Candle Wick Too Short? Discover The 3 Simple Steps To Stop Your Candle Burning Out.

You light up your favorite candle but it keeps burning out. Sound familiar? You might be looking at it thinking "Is my candle wick too short"? Well, that might actually be the issue. Too-short of a wick can be frustrating and can prevent you from fully enjoying your candle.

In this blog post, we'll explore the importance of a properly functioning candle wick, common reasons why a wick might become too short, and steps to fix it. Whether you're an avid candle lover or just starting to incorporate them into your home, this guide will help you get the most out of your candles.


Causes Of A Too Short Wick

Did you know that there are two main types of causes for short candle wicks? One type is outside of your control, while the other is within your control.

The first type is usually caused by how the candle was made. If your candle wick is drowning in its own wax pool or buried inside, the wick might have been cut too short by the company.

Shipping and delivery during hot summer months can also cause cotton wicks to bend, tilt or become completely covered in wax.

The second type of cause has to do with how the candle was burned. But no worries! Not only can you fix it, you can also prevent it from happening in the future.

If you've forgotten to trim your cotton wick, it can start to curl and "mushroom," making it more likely to fall into the wax pool and become buried. On the other hand, if you've trimmed the wick too short, it can also become buried. And if your candle tunnels, creating a small hole around the wick, the hole can become filled with melted wax and bury the wick.

By understanding the causes of short candle wicks, you can keep your candles burning beautifully and brightly.


Too short of a wick and the candle goes out


A Quick Test

First, grab a long wand candle lighter or an extra-long match. Place the flame directly on top of the wick, and hold for up to 30 seconds to melt the surrounding wax.

You can also try holding the candle upside down during lighting, but don't let the wax drip on your hand, so limit this to 10-15 seconds.

If you were successful in lighting the wick, fantastic! Let the candle burn for a few hours until the wax surface is evenly melted.

But what happens if the wick is buried too deep or is still too short after doing the above suggestions? No worries, this is an easy fix for both regular wicks and wooden wicks. We've got you covered with some tips, using stuff you already have at home. Check them out below if you need to relight a difficult candle wick.


Tools Needed To Fix Your Wick

Before we get started, let's take a look at the tools you'll need to fix your too-short wick. The good news is, you won't need any expensive equipment.

You'll need a:

  • heat gun/blow dryer or a long wand candle lighter to melt the wax around the wick.
  • pair of tweezers or a Q-tip to help nudge the cotton wick back into an upright position.
  • paper towels to absorb any extra wax.

Steps to Fix a Too-Short Candle Wick

Here's what to do when your candle wick is too short:

Step 1:

Soften the wax around it with a heat gun or blow dryer (or a long wand candle lighter). If your cotton wick is still buried because it's bent or tilted, stop heating it once the wax is soft and move on to the next step.

If your wick was snipped too short, then keep warming the wax until it creates a smooth, even surface of melted wax before moving on. 

Step 2:

First, let's tackle the buried cotton wick challenge. With a pair of tweezers or a trusty Q-tip, expose and gently nudge that little wick back upright. You'll want to make sure it's sticking out above the surface of the wax. And don't forget to hold it steady until the wax cools.

If you're having trouble, let the wax become opaque before you give it another go.

Now, if the wick (cotton or wood) was trimmed too short, you'll need to pour out some of the melted wax. Get rid of enough wax until the wick has about 1/4 inch (6mm) of length above the surface. Be sure to use a paper towel to avoid making a mess.

Once all that's sorted, let the wax cool and re-solidify for at least 4 hours.

Step 3:

After freeing the wick from your candle and getting it to the correct height in Step 2, it's time to relight it. 

We're going to reset the candle's "memory". By allowing the wax to evenly melt across the entire top layer (all the way to the candle jars walls), it will smooth out any unsightly marks left behind. Plus, you'll prevent the frustrating tunnelling effect that can bury your wick during your next burn.

Wondering how long this will take? It varies by candle size, but a good rule of thumb is to let the wax burn for one hour per inch of diameter. Follow this last step for perfect candle burning.


Benefits of Fixing a Too-Short Wick

Fixing a too-short wick can have several benefits. It can stop your candle burning out.

It can also prevent tunneling, which is when a candle burns down the middle, leaving a lot of wax on the sides. Tunneling can reduce the overall lifespan of a candle.

Fixing a too-short of a wick can also help to maintain proper fragrance dispersion. With a properly functioning wick, you'll get the most out of your candle and be able to fully enjoy its scent.


In conclusion, fixing a too-short wick is easier than you might think, and with a few simple steps, you can get your candle back in working order. Just remember to have your tools on hand, follow the steps closely, and enjoy the benefits of a properly functioning candle. With the right care and attention, your candles can continue to add ambiance, warmth, and style to your home. So don't let a too-short wick get in the way of your candle-loving experience.


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