Candles can create a warm and inviting ambiance in any space. However, they can also pose a potential safety hazard if not used correctly. One issue that can arise with candle testing is the formation of a mushroom-shaped head on the wick. This phenomenon is known as “mushrooming,” can have adverse effects on both the candle’s performance and your safety. In this blog post, we will explore why some candle wicks mushroom when burned.
What Causes Mushrooming?
Most candle wicks are made from a braided cotton material. They are treated with various chemicals to improve its burning properties. When the wick is lit, it draws the liquid wax and the fragrance oil up through the wick and into the flame, where it is vaporized and burned. As the wax vaporizes, it creates a pool of melted wax around the wick. Which Is absorbed by the wick and used as fuel to sustain the flame.
Over time, the buildup of chemicals on the wick from the fragrance oil can cause it to burn unevenly and form a mushroom-shaped head. This buildup is caused by incomplete combustion of the wax. Carbon deposits stick to the wick and accumulate over time. The mushroom-shaped head can obstruct the flame, reducing the candle’s efficiency, and increasing the risk of smoke, soot, and even a potential fire hazard.
Why is This Not Safe?
Mushrooming can be hazardous for several reasons:
- Increased Soot and Smoke: When a candle wick mushrooms, it produces more soot and smoke, which can accumulate on the surrounding surfaces, including walls and ceilings. Over time, this buildup can cause discoloration and even lead to respiratory problems.
- Fire Hazard: A mushroom-shaped head can obstruct the flame, causing it to burn hotter and faster. This increased heat can melt the wax unevenly and even cause the candle to flare up, posing a fire hazard.
- Reduced Efficiency: A mushroom-shaped head can reduce the efficiency of the candle, causing it to burn faster and produce less light.
How To Prevent This
Candle wicks can mushroom when burned due to the buildup of chemicals and carbon deposits on the wick. This phenomenon can reduce the candle’s efficiency and pose a potential safety hazard.Preventing candle wicks from mushrooming is relatively easy:
- Trim the Wick: Before lighting a candle, trim the wick to approximately 1/4 inch. This length helps to prevent the wick from mushrooming and ensures a steady, even flame. If you are an candle lover you can find inexpensive wick trimmers on amazon.
- Choose High-Quality Candles: High-quality candles made from natural materials are less likely to produce a mushroom-shaped head than cheaper.
- Burn Candles Safely: Always burn candles on a flat, stable surface away from flammable materials, and never leave a burning candle unattended.
How We Prevent Mushrooming
As a premium candle manufacture, we have high standards for what ingredients go into our candles. We take pride in how our candles are made and how they are tested. Only high quality ingredients are used in our candles to insure they are as safe as possible and that they burn effectively. All of our candles are tested to European standards in our factory. It is at the candle testing stage that we burn test to see if a mushroom forms. Small mushrooms tend to be fine, it is the large mushrooms that can cause the candle to be unsafe. If a large mushroom forms, we test will re-test the candle until there is little to no mushroom.