Why Is My Candle Flame So High? Achieve the Perfect Wick with These Tips

Have you ever lit a candle and noticed the flame was higher than usual? A high candle flame can be a sign of an issue with the wick size or placement, which can pose a fire hazard. Understanding candle flames is crucial to achieving the perfect wick for your candles, especially if you use wax melts that can get hot quickly. Additionally, a high flame can result in a strong smell that may not be ideal for some people.

One way to test candles for fire hazard is by burning them and observing any signs of a high flame, such as flickering, smoking, or uneven wax melting. It’s important to also take note of any unusual smell or hot glass, which can indicate potential safety issues. These signs can indicate that adjustments need to be made to the wick size or placement.

By understanding how candle flames work, you can create beautiful and safe candles that burn evenly and smoothly. Testing your candles regularly will help ensure that they are not only aesthetically pleasing but also functional. So next time you light a candle or wax melts, pay attention to its flame and look out for any signs of a high burn or fire – it could be telling you something important about your wick! Additionally, make sure to keep the hot wax away from the edges of the candle to prevent any accidents.

The Science Behind Candle Flames

Have you ever tested candles to see why the flame burns so high? There are several reasons why this may happen, and understanding the science behind fire and candle edges can help you achieve the perfect wick for a beautiful, long-lasting burn time.

How Do Candles Work?

Candles work by the process of combustion, creating fire. When you light a candle, the heat of the flame melts the wax near the edges of the wick. This liquid wax is then drawn up into the wick through capillary action, which is like tiny straws in the wick that pull up liquid wax. As the liquid wax reaches the top of the wick, it vaporizes due to heat from the flame. This vaporized wax then combines with oxygen from the air and ignites to create a flame.

Why Is My Candle Flame So High?

The height of a test candle flame is determined by three factors: heat, oxygen, and fuel. If any one of these factors is out of balance, it can cause your test candle flame to burn too high or too low. This is important to keep in mind when testing candles to ensure they are safe and not a fire hazard.

One reason your test candles’ flame may be burning too high is because of carbon buildup on the wick. Over time, as you burn your test candles, carbon can accumulate on the tip of the wick. This buildup can prevent proper combustion and cause your flame to pose a fire hazard by burning higher than normal.

Another reason for a high burning candle could be due to using a wick that’s too large for your container size or type of wax used in making candles. A larger-than-needed wick means more fuel (wax) will be drawn up into it leading to an oversized and potentially dangerous flame.

If the flame size is too large and there isn’t enough surface area exposed at the top level where air comes in contact with the melted pool of wax during the burning process, this leads towards incomplete combustion resulting in soot formation on walls as well as ceiling areas surrounding the location where candles were burnt.

Capillary Action

Capillary action plays a crucial role in determining the size of your candle flame. The size of the wick and its ability to draw up liquid wax through capillary action will determine how much fuel is available for combustion, which in turn affects the height of the flame.

To achieve a perfect candle wick, it’s important to choose a wick that matches your scented candle container size and type of wax used. It also helps to trim your candle wicks before each use to prevent carbon buildup and ensure proper combustion, which can lead to a high candle flame.

Why Candle Flames are Too High

Have you ever noticed that your candle flame is burning too high? If so, there could be several reasons why.

Causes of High Candle Flames

Wick Size

One of the most common causes of high candle flames is a wick that is too large. When a wick is too big for the candle, it draws up more wax than it can burn, resulting in a larger flame. To avoid this issue, ensure that you choose the right size wick for your candle. You can consult with a professional or refer to online resources to determine which size wick is best suited for your specific candle.

Drafty Environment

Another cause of high candle flames is a drafty environment. If there is air movement around the candle, it can cause the flame to flicker and burn higher than normal. To avoid this issue, make sure that you place your candles away from windows or doors where drafts may occur.

Low-Quality Wax

Candles made with low-quality wax can also produce high flames. These types of candles often contain impurities that can affect how they burn. If you notice that your candles consistently produce high flames, consider switching to candles made with higher quality wax.

Burning Time

Burning a candle for too long can also cause the wick to become too long and result in a high flame. Over time, as wax burns down and melts away, the wick becomes longer and thinner which results in an increased flame height. To prevent this issue from occurring, trim your wicks after each use or every four hours of burning time.

How to Achieve The Perfect Wick

Now that we have discussed some common causes of high candle flames let’s talk about how you can achieve the perfect wick:

Wick Trimming

To ensure that your candle flame remains at the appropriate height, trim the wick to ¼ inch before each use. This will prevent the wick from becoming too long and producing a high flame.

Proper Placement

Make sure that you place your candles in a location where there is no air movement or drafts. This will help keep your candle flame at an appropriate height.

High-Quality Wax

Investing in candles made with high-quality wax can also help achieve the perfect wick. These types of candles are less likely to produce high flames because they contain fewer impurities.

Burn Time

Finally, it’s important to monitor how long you burn your candles. To avoid a wick becoming too long, limit burning time to four hours or less per session.

Solving the Problem of a Tall Flame

Candles are a popular way to create ambiance and add warmth to any room. However, a tall flame can be dangerous and cause your candle to overheat.

Why is a Tall Flame a Problem?

A tall flame can be hazardous as it has the potential to cause fires. When there is too much fuel being burned at once, it produces more heat than necessary, which could damage your candle container or even start a fire in your home. Smoke and flickering are common issues with high flames that could affect the air quality inside your home.

How High Should the Flame Be?

The ideal height for a candle’s flame is approximately 1/4 inch (6mm). This measurement ensures that your candle burns evenly while minimizing smoke and soot production. A shorter wick may result in an incomplete burn while longer wicks produce taller flames.

How Do You Solve the Problem?

Solving the problem of a tall flame in scented candles requires adjusting the candle wick size. Here are some steps you can take to ensure proper burning: check the candle wax type and quality, and adjust the candle wick size accordingly.

  1. Trim Your Wick: If you notice that your candle’s flame is too high, try trimming the wick down to 1/4 inch (6mm) before lighting it again.
  2. Use Wick Trimmers: Invest in wick trimmers if you burn candles frequently as they help you trim off just enough of the burnt wick without damaging or cutting off too much.
  3. Choose The Right Wick Size: The right wick size depends on several factors such as fragrance oil used, wax type used, container shape and diameter among others. It is important to choose the right wick size to prevent a high candle flame.
  4. Experiment With Different Wicks and Candle Wax: Experiment with different types of wicks and candle wax until you find one that gives you the desired flame height and burn rate.

Factors Affecting Candle Flames: Fragrance Oil Load and Wax Type

Achieving the perfect wick is crucial. The height of the flame can affect the overall burn time, scent throw, and even safety. One common issue that candle makers face is a high flame. There are several factors that can cause this problem, including fragrance oil load and wax type.

Fragrance Oil Load

Fragrance oils are an essential component of scented candles. They provide the aroma that makes candles so appealing. However, using too much fragrance oil can cause high flames and sooting.

The ideal fragrance oil load for candles is typically between 6-10% of the total weight of the wax. Anything above this range can lead to issues with combustion. When there is too much fragrance oil in the wax, it can create a fuel-rich environment around the wick, leading to a larger flame.

Overloading your wax with fragrance oils can result in sooting. Sooting occurs when unburned carbon particles escape from the flame and stick to surfaces around your candle jar or container.

To avoid these problems, make sure to measure your fragrance oils accurately and follow recommended usage rates provided by your supplier.

Wax Type

The type of wax you use also plays a significant role in achieving a balanced flame in your candles. Soy wax has become increasingly popular among candle makers due to its clean-burning properties.

Soy wax burns at a lower temperature than other types of waxes such as paraffin or beeswax. This lower temperature allows for a more controlled burn and helps prevent high flames from occurring.

Another benefit of soy wax is its ability to hold onto fragrances better than other types of waxes. This means that you may be able to use less fragrance oil without sacrificing scent throw or quality.

If you’re experiencing high flames with your current wax type, consider switching to soy wax for a more balanced burn.

Other Tips for Achieving the Perfect Wick

In addition to fragrance oil load and wax type, there are a few other tips that may help you achieve the perfect wick in your candles:

  • Trim your wick: A long wick can lead to high flames and sooting. Make sure to trim your wick to ¼ inch before each burn.
  • Use a wick holder: If you’re having trouble keeping your wick centered in your candle jar or container, try using a wick holder.
  • Experiment with different sizes: The size of the wick can also affect the height of the flame. Try experimenting with different sizes until you find the perfect fit for your candle.

By following these tips and paying attention to fragrance oil load and wax type, you can achieve a balanced flame in your candles and create beautiful, safe products that customers will love.

Achieving the Perfect Wick for Your Candle Flame

Candles are a great way to add ambiance and warmth to any room. However, if your candle flame is too high, it can be dangerous and unsightly. Choosing the right candle wick is crucial for achieving the perfect flame height.

Cotton or Wood Wicks

There are two popular options: cotton or wood. Cotton wicks are widely used in candles made of paraffin wax, soy wax, and coconut wax. They are known for their clean burn and minimal soot buildup.

Wooden wicks have gained popularity in recent years due to their unique aesthetic and crackling sound when burning. They work well with soy wax and other natural waxes but may not be suitable for paraffin wax candles.

Trimming Your Wick

Trimming your candle wick is an essential step in achieving the perfect flame height. Before lighting your candle, make sure to trim the wick to 1/4 inch. This prevents the flame from getting too high and causing soot buildup on the edges of the container.

Using a pair of scissors can be time-consuming and difficult; that’s where a wick trimmer comes in handy. A wick trimmer is a specialized tool designed to make trimming your wick quick and easy.

Avoiding Soot Buildup

Soot buildup occurs when a candle burns at too high of a temperature or when the flame is too large compared to the size of the container. This can cause black residue on walls, ceilings, furniture, and even clothing.

To avoid soot buildup on your candle container’s edges, make sure you’re using an appropriate size wick for your container’s diameter. A general rule of thumb is that the diameter of your container should match your wick’s width within +/- 2 mm.

Avoid burning your candle for more than four hours at a time. This gives the wax enough time to melt and prevents the flame from getting too high.

Troubleshooting Your Candle

If you’re still experiencing a high flame despite following these tips, there may be an issue with your wax or wick. Here are some common issues and how to troubleshoot them:

  • Mushrooming: If the tip of your wick looks like a mushroom, it’s because carbon has built up on the wick’s tip. To fix this, extinguish the candle and trim the wick.
  • Tunneling: If your candle burns down in a tunnel-like shape, it’s because you haven’t burned it long enough during previous uses. To fix this, let your candle burn until the entire surface is melted before extinguishing.
  • Drowning: If your candle’s flame is struggling to stay lit or is flickering excessively, it may be due to excess wax buildup around the wick. To fix this, pour off any excess wax before relighting.

Tips for Fixing a Wick That’s Too High or Too Short

Importance of Trimming the Wick Before Lighting the Candle

Trimming the wick before lighting the candle is crucial to achieving the perfect flame height. A wick that is too long will result in a flame that is too high, while a wick that is too short will not create enough heat to melt all of the wax and may cause tunneling. The ideal length for a wick depends on various factors such as candle diameter, type of wax, fragrance load, and colorants.

To trim your wick properly, use sharp scissors or a wick trimmer to cut it down to 1/4 inch before lighting your candle. This length allows for an even burn and minimizes soot buildup on the container or walls.

Adjusting the Wick Length to Control Flame Height

If you have already lit your candle and notice that the flame is too high or flickering excessively, it’s time to adjust the wick length. Here are some tips for fixing a wick that’s too high:

  • Use scissors or tweezers to gently push the wick away from the center of the candle.
  • Blow out the flame and let it cool completely before trimming off excess length with scissors.
  • If necessary, pour out some melted wax around the wick until it reaches an appropriate height.

On the other hand, if you find that your flame is too low or drowning in wax pool, try these steps:

  • Use a toothpick or skewer to lift up any debris around and on top of your wick.
  • Pour out some melted wax around your wick until it reaches an appropriate height.
  • If none of these steps work, consider re-wicking your candle with a larger size.

Tips for Achieving Perfect Flame Height

Getting just right amount of heat from candles can be tricky sometimes. But don’t worry, here are some tips to achieve the perfect flame height:

  • Choose the right wick for your candle. Different types of wicks have different burn rates and will affect the flame height.
  • Use a wick holder or centering device to keep your wick in place while pouring wax.
  • Avoid placing candles in drafty areas where air currents can cause uneven burning and high flames.
  • Always follow manufacturer’s guidelines on fragrance load, colorants, and wax type.

Mastering the Art of Candle Making

In conclusion, achieving the perfect wick for your candle flame is crucial to ensure a safe and enjoyable candle-burning experience. Understanding the science behind candle flames and the factors that affect their height, such as fragrance oil load and wax type, can help you solve the problem of a tall flame. Following tips for fixing a wick that’s too high or too short can save your candles from burning poorly.

To achieve the perfect wick, it’s important to experiment with different sizes and materials until you find what works best for your specific candle-making process. Don’t be afraid to try new things and make adjustments as needed.

Remember to prioritize safety when making candles by using high-quality materials and following proper guidelines. With practice and patience, you can master the art of candle making and enjoy beautiful, perfectly-wicked candles every time.


Q: How do I know if my candle flame is too high?

A: A flame that is taller than 1 inch may be considered too high. If your flame is flickering excessively or producing soot on the container or walls around it, it may also be too high.

Q: What causes a candle flame to be too high?

A: A variety of factors can cause a candle flame to be too high, including an overly large wick size, excessive fragrance oil load in the wax, or using an unsuitable wax type for your particular wick size.

Q: Can I fix a wick that’s too high?

A: Yes! You can trim down the wick with scissors or use a snuffer to put out the flame and then adjust the length before relighting. You can also try moving your candle away from any drafts or adjusting its placement in general.

Q: What kind of wicks should I use for my candles?

A: The type of wick you should use will depend on the size and type of candle you are making. It’s important to experiment with different sizes and materials until you find what works best for your specific process.

Q: How can I make sure my candles burn cleanly?

A: To ensure a clean burn, always use high-quality materials, avoid overloading your wax with fragrance oil, and trim your wick before each use. Make sure to follow proper guidelines for candle-making and burning.