Saturday, December 8, 2012

Burn your candle the right way.

Lit candles are symbolic for many occasions in the world. Christmas time, and a romantic dinner are a couple of occasions that come to mind. Unfortunately, for many poor people around the world candlelight might be the only way to get light at night. However, if the rapid rise of electricity prices continues in Australia, many people here will be forced to burn candles for their lighting.

This brings me to a quote from Thomas Edison, (1847 t o 1931) American inventor and business man. “I shall make electricity so cheap that only the rich can afford to burn candles.” – Wouldn’t we wish that this would be so?

So, my advice for safe candle burning is: “Do not burn your candle at both ends.” This phrase originates from a short poem by Edna St. Vincent Millay, which read:

I burn my candle at both ends,
It will not last the night.
But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends,
It gives a lovely light.

Basically, it’s meaning centres around the fact
that if you burn a candle at both ends, while the light it gives forth will be brighter; it also won't last as long. An alternate interpretation would be that if you burn a candle at both ends of the day - that is to say, both early in the morning, and late into the night - it wouldn't last as long either.

It is also an expression that means living with impetuous eagerness. A candle burning at both ends simultaneously (not sequentially) will give out a lot of light, but burn up in a hurry. Usually this is a metaphor for dissipation, excess, and overindulgence.  So, just light your candle on the right end. - Werner


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Tips for safe candle burning.
By Vanessa Huckeby
When you first start burning candles, you don't expect to do much more than light a match and enjoy the candlelight. While this is certainly a simplified version, for most of us candle burning is a science and an art. The good news though, is by following some simple candle maintenance rules, the better they will burn and the more they will enrich your candle burning experience.  The even better news is that there really isn't that much to do as things to be aware of.

1.    The first time you light a pillar candle, burn it one hour for every inch of its diameter. This will allow the pool of wax to extend to the outside rim and prevent your candle from forming a "canyon" in its centre. Burning your candle this way will also set its memory. Each time you re-light the candle it will "remember" to burn out to the rim.

2.    Keep your wicks trimmed!! This essential for a clean, smoke free burn. Many people complain about candles that smoke and this can be eliminated by trimming the wicks to ¼ inch every time you burn the candle. This is true for all types of candle.

3.    If your candle is smoking despite trimming the wick and checking for debris in the melt pool, extinguish the candle immediately. Trim the wick again a little more and allow to cool before relighting. The smoking will stop. With a quality candle, you shouldn't have problems with smoking, but it is worth remembering that scented candles will smoke more than unscented candles.

4.    When you burn a highly scented candle, sometimes "mushrooming" will occur on the wick. Treat this as a friendly reminder that you need to trim the wick.

5.    Candles need to breathe. If you burn a candle in a small room, it is likely to smoke. Please consider the size of your room when you display your new candles.

6.    Never "blow out" a candle. Blowing will spray the wax everywhere and cause the candle to drip and smoke. The most effective way to extinguish the flame of a candle is to use a candle snuffer. If you don't own a snuffer, the best way to extinguish the candle is to place your forefinger in front of the flame before you blow. This clever trick means that the air will hit the flame from the sides instead of hitting it directly.

IMPORTANT! While everything I have described will enhance your experience burning candles, the advice below is essential. Please ensure you read this advice for burning your candles safely.

•    Never leave a burning candle unattended!
•    Keep out of the reach of children and pets
•    To prevent smoking, trim wick to ¼ inch prior to each use and keep trimmed.
•    If candle smokes, extinguish, trim wick & re-light
•    Keep debris out of the melt pool
•    To prevent fading, keep out of direct sunlight.
•    Extinguish by dipping wick into melted wax then reposition. This will help to eliminate smoking.
•    If candle burns unevenly due to a draft, carefully push the wick to the higher side. If this causes dripping, extinguish, cool and relight. Repeat a few times and the candle will repair itself.
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My thought for today. Werner
We are no more than candles burning in the wind. - Japanese Proverb
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E. and B. Phillips said...

Very interesting, you are always full of surprises. My husband and I love dinner by candlelight, but I didn’t know much about candles other than putting a match to it. And, I loved the phrase, “Don’t burn your candle at both ends.” We always enjoy reading your interesting and informative blog.

B. Lepoldi said...

The humble candle; an interesting read. Candles will be our lights in the not too distant future, if we don’t get rid of that redhead in Canberra.

Beverley said...

A interesting posting. - Werner