Candle Tunneling, “What the heck is that” you may be asking? Candle tunneling is when a candle burns down the center, dropping below the top of the wax and leaving a hard tunnel of wax around the edge of the container. As a result, the wick becomes more challenging to light, cutting down your burn time and usage of your candle.
If you want to get the best use out of your candles, learning proper candle care to help prolong their life will help you enjoy your favorite scents longer. So, let’s take a look at some candle care tips that will help you learn how to prevent candle tunneling. Plus, how to fix it if it happens.
How to prevent candle tunneling
The first burn is Important
Let it burn (Let it burn), let it burn (Let it burn), gotta let it burn …Usher had it right! The first burn of your new candle is essential for establishing the life of your wax. Essentially, it sets the wax memory for the burning process going forward. Therefore, you should allow the first layer of wax to completely melt for your first burn before blowing it out. Not allowing a full burn leads to a tunnel being created during the next lighting. And this gives candle tunneling as unmelted wax sticks to the side.
To avoid this, ensure you fully allow the candle to burn for each use for at least 1 hour for every inch in width (i.e., 1 inch=1 hour, 2 inches -2 hours…, and so on.)
Following this candle care tip allows for a longer burning time that will help prevent candle tunneling and give your candle a longer life.
Choose the right candle
Not all candles are created equal. Many are made with bad ingredients, or the composition of the wick and wax is just not of great quality. Tunneling is usually a clue that the wick is not the correct size for the wax or the container. Cotton wicks soak up the wax, which makes it burn quicker, but can leave a lot of wax behind. On the other hand, Wooden wicks burn lower, creating a low smolder that allows the wax to warm more evenly for a level burn. Ardor Bin candle wicks are 100% naturally sourced and created to ensure your candle burns longer and brighter. So, choosing the right candle is important in maintaining your candle long-term. It helps prevent candle tunneling plus proper candle care.
Related: Wooden Wick vs. Cotton Wick: Which is Better For My Home?
How To Fix Candle Tunneling
The Foil Method
Oh no! You found out about candle tunneling after it happened to you–no problem. There are still candle care steps you can take to save your candle so you can enjoy them for hours to come. You can do the foil tent method if you caught the tunneling early. To do this, light the candle and then place aluminum foil shaped like a dome on the top. Create a small opening for air and the smoke to rise at the top. This will heat the wax, melting it off the edges of the container and flowing back into the center of the candle.
If you caught the funneling issue early, there is an easy candle care tip to help you out. You can heat the top of the candle with a blow dryer set on high heat to correct the wax memory. Be sure to not place the speed too high as to blow the wax-up the sides, and you only want to melt the top layer. This will smooth out the wax, allowing you a clean slate for you to light your candle the next time around.
The Oven Method
Another candle tunneling fix option is heating the candle in the oven. You can heat the oven to 175 degrees Fahrenheit, placing it on a cookie sheet for about 5 minutes or less. Be sure to watch this closely and turn on your oven light to keep a lookout for when it’s ready. Remove the candles from the oven, placing them on a safe surface, allowing them to cool and the wax to resettle.
Getting the most use out of your candles involves practicing proper candle care. And candle tunneling is one of the biggest issues when it comes to proper candle care. However, with the tips we’ve shared, you should be able to fix the issue at any point. Plus using candles like Ardor Bins’ which provide candle care instructions will help set you on the right path from the start. So note these candle care tips to enjoy your candles from the first light until the last burn.