How Long Can Candles Burn?

An average candle can burn for 5 to 8 hours per ounce of wax. The exact lifetime of a candle depends on the type of candle wax, wick size, shape of the candle, and additives. However, you don’t want to burn your candles for hours on end, since that can damage the candle and may result in a potential fire hazard.

The first time you light a candle, you should burn it no longer than roughly one hour per inch of its diameter. This will allow your candles to burn evenly across the surface and establish a footprint for its future burn.

Burning a candle for too long can damage the candle and result in physical and chemical changes in the candle that can’t be reversed. Moreover, leaving your burning candles unattended for a long time can be a dangerous fire hazard.

How long does the average candle last?

Generally, the average candle burns for roughly 5 to 8 hours per ounce, but different types of candles burn longer than others. Paraffin candles have the lowest average burning time because the wax has a very low melting point.

Color additives and fragrance oils can have a big influence on how long your candle will burn. Moreover, decoration like dried flowers or flame-retardant items inside the candle can also impact the melting point and burning time.

Moreover, the size of the wick is also an important factor to consider. A bigger wick will bring more wax to the flame, which makes the candle burn brighter and faster.

It’s normally recommended to use your candles within twelve to sixteen months of purchasing them for the best aroma. Past a year, the ingredients in lower-quality candles might begin to separate. You can visibly see the separation in the discoloration and lines as they begin to form.

How long should I burn a candle the first time?

The first time you get a candle, you should burn it for roughly one hour per inch of its diameter to spread the melt evenly across the surface of your candle. This will ensure that your candle will bun evenly in the future and will last as long as possible.

So the time you should burn your candles the first time is determined by the shape of the candle and not the weight of it. So a narrow pillar candle should be burned for only a short amount of time, while a candle in a broad glass jar will last much longer even though it contains the same amount of wax.

Depending on the type of candle wax you use, limiting the duration of the first burn will be more or less important for ensuring your candle will last a long time.

Can I leave a candle burning all day?

It is not safe to leave a candle burning all day because there are many risks of leaving them unattended, even for just a few minutes. Candles can easily start a large fire, especially if they are freestanding and not encased within a jar or container.

There are many safety risks involved with leaving a candle burning all day, with the largest risk being house fires. House fires can happen within an instant, and unattended candles are one of the most common reasons that accidental house fires start. To avoid this, never leave your candles unattended.

Long-term candle burning can also deteriorate your candle. Normally, cheap candles are made with low-quality wicks, which might lead to wick mushrooming after a long burn.

Frequently asked questions

How long do votive candles burn?

Votive candles can burn roughly 7 to 9 hours per ounce of wax. So, a standard 2-ounce votive candle can burn for roughly 15 hours, while a 3-ounce votive candle will last about 24 hours.

How long does a tea light candle burn?

Many tea lights are advertised to last for 4 to 6 hours. However, depending on the type of wax used, most tea light candles can burn for 2 to 5 hours in practice.

How long do floating candles burn?

The burn time of a floating candle depends on its size. A 2″ floating candle will normally burn for up to 4~5 hours, while the bigger 3″ candles can burn more than 8 hours. However, you should be careful when placing the candle in the water to make sure it stays dry. If the wick of the top of the candle gets wet, the candle might burn out much faster.

How long do taper candles burn?

As a rule of thumb, a taper candle will burn for approximately one hour per inch of candle. So a standard 12″ taper candle will burn for roughly 12 hours.

How long do Diptyque candles burn?

Diptyque candles are made to burn longer than the average candle you can find in the store. A Diptyque candle can buy for roughly 50 to 60 hours.

How long do Yankee candles burn?

The burn time of a Yankee Candle depends on the type and size of the candle. A small jar candle will last 25~40 hours, while a large jar candle will last 110~150 hours. The votive candles from Yankee Candle are 1.7 ounces and burn for roughly 15 hours, which is slightly longer than regular votive candles.

Yankee CandleWeightBurn TimeSize
Small Jar Candle104g25-40 hrs5.8 cm x 8.6cm
Medium Jar Candle411g65-90 hrs10.7cm x 12.7cm
Large Jar Candle623g110-150 hrs10.7cm x 16.8cm
Votive Candle49g15 hrs4.6cm x 4.8cm
Scented Tea
Light Candles
9.8g each4-6 per Tea Light3.8cm x 1.9cm

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