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Votive caught on fire!

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I got the shock of my life today when one of the votives we make that I was burning in my kitchen literally caught on fire!

All of a sudden this huge flame shot up from the wick - the height of the glass itself, or higher!

I'm SO lucky that we were sitting just outside when it happened because stupid me had it on the shelf of a kitchen dresser and the whole thing could have caught on fire!

When I raced to blow it out I immediately saw that the wick had curled over and the tip was bowed over dipping into the melt pool.

Didn't this exact same thing happen to someone else on the board? I seem to remember reading about it?

I told Richard about it and he sternly told me off because yes, I sheepishly admit that I hadn't trimmed the wick before lighting it.

I'd burned it a few days before and it was about 1/3 burned down when I re lit it today.....was in a bit of a rush, had people coming over and just lit it without trimming the wick.

I also noted that there was a considerable meltpool......more than what is normal and the glass of course was incredibly hot.

Would me not having trimmed the wick have caused this to happen? Thinking back, it was rather long. :(

It's really given me a fright....thank goodness we don't sell a lot of votives anyway, but the ones we have left I definately don't feel confident about now.

I've never before encountered any problems of this nature with any of the votives we've made and tested.

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Tracy, it was me! I had it happen with a paraffin votive, but the wicks were self trimming and this one didn't and curled over forming a U. I've burned 100s, if not 1000s, and never had this happen before. Then I have the incident I wrote about, and within 2 weeks had another just like it. I presume it had something to do with this lot of wicks, but it has given pause for thought.

In both my cases, the wick was at the proper length when the burn was started, but instead of self trimming, just curled over and the top of the wick bent into the meltpool, and the whole U lit up. What a torch!:shocked2: I will never leave the room of a lit votive again. I now give additional safety precautions with every sale. I've been selling for 13 years, making candles for myself and family for over 40, and do extensive testing. It's only been within the past couple of months that anything like this has ever happened, so it only goes to show that anything can happen, and probably will sooner or later.

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Thanks Bernadette!

Scary isn't it!

It's freaking me out thinking of all that "can" happen.

Makes "never leave a burning candle unnattended"mean really....just never!

I'm wondering if, in my case, having put the candle inside this shelf (Big mistake in hindsight) could have had something to do with it?

Maybe there was a build up of fumes...added to the fact that I hadn't trimmed the wick....?

I'm burning another one now, NOT on the shelf and WITH the wick trimmed.... and keeping a very close eye on it......

Just NOT something you want to have happen hey.

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Were these cd wicks? Were both the waxes paraffin? I have noticed that cd wicking seems to be leaning over as the wax softens. It looks like the wick has wandered but that is not the case. The wick is not staying straight and I'm beginning to think that something has changed in the manufacturing procedure. I would be interested to know. I think zinc for paraffin may make a comeback and I don't know about soy or parablends.


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Hi Chuck, no this was palm wax and the wicks were ACS wicks (from a local supplier here in Australia)

I think we will just do away with votives completely.

We can't buy display boxes here for them and even when shrink wrapped they tend to get tatty looking when constantly transported so they have never been something we've wanted to permanently add to our line.

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Holy crap.... thats always really scary to hear about that kind of stuff. My aunt had a Yankee candle (jar) crack the other day on her dining table, ruined the table finish and her tablecloth thats a family heirloom. Big mistake and shes totally upset about it, because she admitted it had been burning for 8 hours or so straight and she wasnt checking on it, she was just going about her day... but still, I think its sad the jar did that.

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  • 2 months later...

Wow! So scary! Thank goodness nothing worse happened. I was going to suggest trying to burn another votive under strict conditions to test your product, but you are doing that. Hopefully it was just the wick size, but good to do some testing. If you don't feel comfortable with a certain candle type for various reasons, then yea, you may want to discontinue it from your product line. It will give you peace of mind, at least.

Glad all is ok!



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