What Does It Mean When a Candle Makes Popping And Crackling Noises?
You’re seated alone, basking in the comfortable atmosphere of your room. No sounds, no distractions— it’s just you and your little candle. Then all of a sudden, the candle goes ‘pop-pop!’ and crackles out of nowhere! Well, this is definitely something undesirable to hear on a relaxing night. Other than these sounds suggesting a possible fire hazard, it’s just unpleasant for a candle to be doing that, right?
Candle enthusiasts usually encounter a lot of problems with their candles. From the smoke down to its flame size – but there’s actually more to a candle than just lighting it up.
Let’s dive deeper into why a candle makes popping or crackling noises for this article. If you hang out ’til the end, maybe you can take away some tips on avoiding this situation for the next time you light up your candle!
What Is A Popping And Crackling Candle?
A popping candle is exactly what the term implies: A candle that creates unusual crackling or popping sounds similar to the noise of burning wood when watching a bonfire.
Well, spiritually, they say that it means someone with bad intentions is talking bad about you. Who knows! However, kidding aside, there are actually tons of possible reasons why a candle could be making these sounds.
We are going to go through the reasons why and how you can stop it.
Itching to know more about why this happens to your candle, aren’t you? Well, let’s now find out!
Why Is My Candle Making Popping Or Crackling Noises?
Frankly, a popping candle is usually caused by multiple things. All of which may contribute to a significant risk of a fire hazard when left unattended as an irregular burn is made.
A candle that usually crackles and pops may be due to an excessively long candlewick, air bubbles released in the candle wax, or moisture around the wick.
If you’re one of those who extinguish a flame using water or put candles in the freezer before using them, you need to stop doing that. Now. Whoever told you that tip may have lied to you.
All jokes aside, these things actually do more harm than good for your candles. Storing a candle in the freezer greatly lowers its temperature. As the freezing candle gradually melts after being brought outside to room temperature, moisture collects around the wick. This excess moisture affects how the candle burns, causing an erratic flame that makes a popping or crackling sound.
Long Candle Wick
This is now your sign to trim your wick shorter if you haven’t! Remember that a candle wick should ideally be cut down to ¼ inches. A wick too long will eventually accumulate carbon, causing it to be disfigured like a mushroom.
A mushroomed candlewick uses more fuel if left unattended. When this happens, the candle will be unstable as it burns eccentrically longer than usual, creating crackling, popping sounds. An erratic flame, in this case, should be immediately extinguished.
Debris And Impurities
If we were being honest – how should anyone know if debris gets in the candle?! Unfortunately, debris like dust or particles is problematic for a candle.
A candle sitting around for some time inevitably collects dirt here and there. That’s when the problem starts. Dirt that accumulates on the surface and melts into the candle’s wax causes an irregular and unstable burn among other unwanted things, like soot.
Sadly, this is one manufacturing issue you can’t really do anything about. As bad as it sounds, just return it or buy another candle.
Due to a faulty step in the candle making process, a poorly-made candle may cause a couple of air bubbles to be trapped inside the candle wax.
So, what? Well, when this ‘bad apple’ gradually burns, the air bubbles are released into the wax, which eventually causes the candle to make popping or crackling noises while burning.
Is It Normal For Candles To Pop And Crackle?
If you got this far, you might be weirded out by the things that cause a candle to make popping sounds. Aren’t you wondering, isn’t it normal for candles to create noises like those?
A few pops might be okay, sure. But, it is definitely not normal for a candle to constantly pop and crackle. Continuous sounds should alert you of a possible hazard requiring an investigation.
Suppose your candle has already been popping and crackling for quite a while. In that case, its container might get fractured or the unsteady flame may grow larger.
As we mentioned, you can check either the candle’s wick length or wax for any contaminants or air bubbles. In the worst-case scenario, if it’s a case of a manufacturing issue, then – maybe it’s time to bid your candle adieu.
And there’s another reason as to why you might have to say goodbye to your candle…
Will My Candle Explode If It Crackles?
Yes… and no.
No, because candles aren’t your usual time-ticking bombs that could go boom at any given moment just because they crackle and pop. However, a popping sound may indicate a possible hazard in sight when left unattended. In that case, an explosion may still be possible.
In a simple and science-y way of saying, too much heat trapped inside a candle’s container traps steam inside, creating pressure against the container and causing it to explode.
Let’s say you have a crackling candle in a glass jar. Moisture that accumulates in the candle may be heated once the temperature inside the jar increases, turning moisture into steam. This steam creates pressure against the jar’s walls resulting in a possible explosion.
Now that you learned about the possible risks of a popping and crackling candle, are you curious about how you can stop your candles from doing this?
If you are, then hang around some more for valuable and handy tips you’ll surely thank us for!
How Can I Stop My Candles From Popping & Crackling?
There are actually several things you can do to make your candle safer and stop it from popping and crackling.
1. If In Doubt, Throw It Out
Manufacturing issues are inevitable for any product. Air bubbles, for example, might be a bad contaminant for a candle once they are released into the wax. Some candles also have impurities due to a flawed process that poses a risk.
Our advice? Discard or return the candle. It is definitely not worth the risk of experiencing a fire hazard.
2. Keep Your Candles In A Cool And Dry Place
Since dirt and dust are harmful contaminants for any candle, it is best to keep your candle in a dry place to keep it away from any debris. Even your bathroom sink or kitchen counter is not a safe storage place. Go get them now!
Why? Candles are prone to drawing in more moisture from these places since they are locations with water sources. With more moisture, the chance of the candle container exploding increases, putting you in danger. Furthermore, the wax will accumulate dust and debris which will make the candle pop.
3. Put A Cover On Your Candles In Between Uses
Hey, it’s time for you to get into the habit of covering your candle after using it! This keeps your candle fresh, especially if it has fragrance or essential oils.
More importantly, covering your candle keeps the factors causing a crackling sound at bay. A lid keeps your candle dirt, dust, and moisture free. Thereby reducing the risk of hearing crackling or popping sounds from your candle. This simple step indeed goes a long way if you keep it to heart!
4. Clean The Top Of Your Candle
Just like our previous step, wiping off the top of your candle before using it again ensures the elimination of any dust, grime, or moisture that may have accumulated prior to your usage.
Use a damp, lint-free cloth to gently wipe the top surface of your candle. NEVER use alcohol in doing so since it is highly flammable. Heads up on your soy or coconut wax candles, though! Since they are softer than usual, wipe their surfaces as lightly as possible to avoid smudging.
5. Trim That Wick!
You’re probably unaware of this, but a candle’s wick does so much in determining the flame of our candles. Do yourself a favor and start caring for your candles’ wick by learning the proper maintenance!
As a head start, the basic tip to avoid crackling noises caused by a candle’s wick is to trim it to an optimum length. Cut the wick down to no longer than ¼ of an inch. This simple task will prevent soot production and ‘mushrooming’ of the wick before every use, which decreases the chance of hearing popping sounds from your candle.
6. Keep A Close Eye On Your Candle
Never, ever leave a candle unattended. When you leave a lit candle unsupervised in a room, you may not hear any popping or crackling noise that could indicate danger. How will the possible fire hazard be addressed if no sounds are heard?
Luckily, most of our top-notch solutions for you are easily understood and feasible. However, the worst thing that could happen is to throw your candle away. But, can a candle be easily thrown out?
When Can I Throw My Candle Away?
Proper precautions should still be observed when throwing candles away. In fact, a candle is ideally thrown out when there’s only about an inch of its wax left or when the candle is entirely useless beyond repair despite attempting to rescue it.
Ensure that the candle has completely cooled down and is unlit when thrown in the trash! Throwing a warm candle or container heightens the risk of causing a fire in the trash.
Say Goodbye Forever to Pops and Crackles!
Phew, now that was a lot, wasn’t it? As the saying goes, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. An ounce of knowledge won’t hurt anyone, and we’re glad to be of help to every candle enthusiast out there in dire need of advice or solution!
To sum it all up, any issue with your candles should be attended to immediately without delay. Even a simple crackle-pop sound could suggest bigger trouble, such as producing excess soot or buildup of pressure in a candle’s container.
By following our innovative tips on how to further prevent your candle from making these noises, you can ensure a pleasurable experience with a calm flame. But if all else fails and the manufacturer is to blame, then it’s best to just throw or return the candle.
Lighting a candle sure does require extensive knowledge. You are now one step ahead of giving yourself an enjoyable experience with your own candles!