Can Candles Go Bad? Yes, and Here’s How to Fix That

Candles were formerly a source of light for people before becoming mostly an ornamental item. Even in the present era, many individuals keep candles on hand in case of an emergency.

Are the candles you bought a decade ago for this reason still going to work when it’s most needed? Or have they reached the end of their useful life and need to be replaced.

Candles do not disintegrate, however most candles are made of organic components will do so gradually. 

Scent deterioration and color loss will be the first signs of this process before the wax’s integrity is jeopardized. A candle, on the other hand, will burn as long as there is wax and a wick.

It’s essential to maintain your candles if you want to extend their life and ensure that they burn efficiently. You can enjoy a fragrant candle for longer or have a source of light when you need it most – in an emergency – by doing so.

How Long do Candles Last?

Candles made of paraffin wax or beeswax do not die out. Even if the wax and wick have already been lit, they will burn for decades. Here are my favorite beeswax candles.

Candles similar to the soy wax candles, on the other hand, degrade with time and typically won’t be functional after a year or two.

They’ll normally still work after a couple of year, although the burn quality may be compromised. 

How to Store Candles

You may extend the life of your candle by taking certain steps, especially if it’s created with organic waxes or aroma oils. Keep it out of direct sunlight is one of the best things you can do. Because UV radiation degrades things over time, colors fade and scents vanish, this is the case.

You’ve probably observed that things left outside or near a window fade with time, and this is the same concept at work. Once you’ve done burning your candles, transfer them to a more shaded location if they’re in the sunlight.

It’s also a good idea to keep your candles in an airtight container to preserve the organic . Some candles come with a container and a cover, which you can simply replace when you’ve finished burning them. If your candles don’t come with a container or a cover, consider purchasing an airtight plastic box to store them in when not in use.

If you choose an opaque box, the candles will be protected from the sun and you may leave it out. If you buy a transparent one, you’ll need to find a dark place to keep it.

Tips to Store Candles

  • While the candle is burning, keep it away from breezes and fans. This is to maintain a consistent burn and prevent sputtering or blowing out of the flame. 
  • Before each burn, trim the candle wick. This will also aid in even burning and lessen the likelihood of smoke, which will stain the container. If soot stains do appear, wipe them on a regular basis. Be weary of the heat, though.
  • Ensure that the entire first layer of wax melts on the first burn (this may take several hours). This will aid in the “memory” of the candle wax and avoid tunneling, which occurs when only the middle of the candle melts down.
  • To avoid the wax from superheating and losing its fragrance, don’t keep the candle burning for more than four hours at a time on consecutive burns. Allow the candle to cool and harden fully before relighting it.
  • Keep the candle’s top clean and dust-free. You won’t have to worry about this if you store it in the container described above.

Signs Your Candle Expired

If you come across some candles that have been mishandled, a fast visual assessment might reveal a damaged candle. Look for discoloration and crystallization around the corners, especially. 

Soy-based candles are more likely to show obvious changes several years after they were made. Despite being properly preserved, scented candles will eventually lose their smell. 

Another way to tell that a candle has expired is if the scent has a nasty odor when burned. As a result, most providers advise using scented candles within a year after purchase. While the candle may not provide the intended suggestion of an apple orchard in your room, these candles will suffice for emergency lighting.

Final Words

If you bought your candles for the aroma, use them within a year of purchase and keep them correctly between uses to get the most fragrance out of them. After the candles have been cured for 1-4 months, they will have the strongest scent.

If you keep your survival candles in a cool, dry place, they will endure for years before losing their burn time. If you’re buying candles for an emergency, go for paraffin-based or beeswax candles because they burn for a long period.

I prefer beeswax candles such as these from Amazon. They’re far less untidy and convenient to stow at home or in a bag.

1 thought on “Can Candles Go Bad? Yes, and Here’s How to Fix That”

  1. Who’d have guessed there was so much to learn about candles? I’m officially shaken! This was the blog I didn’t realize I needed until it was too late!


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