Know the candle wick

As one of the small accessories always found in the house, the candle is not only used for lighting but it can also be a decorative item. Whatever the use, the most important part of the candle is the wick. It is the soul of the object, which means that the choice should not be made lightly. The candle wick is a very important part of the longevity of a candle.

What is the candle wick for?

In the manufacture of a candle, the essential material is the wax produced by bees. But the key element is the candle wick, which must be chosen carefully. Its role is to supply the flame with fuel. It leads the wax to the flame and also serves as a support for combustion. For the candle to light well, the balance between the wax that serves as fuel and the oxidant in the ambient air must be respected. If the wax is insufficient, in this case the candle wick will be drowned out by the melted wax since the candle does not burn at a good speed. If, on the other hand, it is too much, e.g. if the wick is too big, either the flame gives off smoke with soot or the flame is flickering and the wick cannot provide the necessary amount of wax, which will cause the candle to go out.


The different types of candle wicks

To make the choice, there are two types of candle wick: the braided one and the waxed one. For braided wicks, these are the most known and common models. They consist of many threads braided together. They are made of cotton or linen or hemp thread. There are three models for braided wicks: flat, round and square. The flat braid is the most used and is suitable for all kerosene wax candles. These candle wicks are very economical and are usually produced in very large quantities. However, they are different from those for kerosene lamps. For the round braid, it is more suitable for beeswax candles and those containing more than 60% stearin. It is also recommended for vegetable waxes and those that lack purity. Finally the square is made for thick candles or outdoor candles. This type of wick is not much used and is mainly intended for candles with a large diameter.

As for the waxed wicks, they are dipped in a liquid wax bath and wrapped in wax. This process accelerates the ignition a little more. In the core of these wax candle wicks is paper or cotton braid. Waxed candle wicks are mostly used for small kerosene wax and gel candles. For better rigidity, the wicks are sometimes made around a zinc wire.