and how they can scent your home
I admit it........I am a scent hound. I have spent too much money and time looking for the perfect candle. With two dogs, a cat and three kids I want the house to smell good and that's not always easy. Over the years I have found candles that really have left a delicious aroma in the house. The problem is that they burn out too quickly and when I go to buy another one...................discontinued!
A few years ago I found effusion lamps. I read up on them and decided to buy one. The lamp cost around $20.00 but I used a coupon and got it for $16.00. I bought mine at Kirkland's (one of my favorite stores). I have seen them at Hobby Lobby as well (if you go to their web site, they have coupons for 40% off one item). These lamps are also available all over the Internet. Just put in a search word: effusion lamp and you will find plenty.
I then had to purchase the effusion oil. I got mine at http://www.courtneyscandles.com/ where they also have a large selection of the oils and lamps.
The problem was: I burned through the oil in no time. One bottle costs: $9.95. At the rate I was using my new effusion lamp, at the end of the month there wasn't going to be money left to pay the mortgage, so I thought I could try and make my own. The bottles have ingredients on them which include Isopropyl alcohol and essential oil. The question was, how much of each and was there something else added that they didn't list?
I really got fixated on this and was convinced that I could find a recipe out there. It took a long time to find a recipe, try it, move it around, change the measurements and finally come up with the right ingredients. Much of the information I got came from a Canadian web site.
I was floating around the Garden Web yesterday when I came across a post about candles. Some folks had mentioned the effusion lamps, so I figured I would share all my research.
What is an effusion lamp? They are decorative lamps (glass, blown glass, mosaics) that come with a snuffer cap (to put it out) and a decorative diffuser cap. They come with a wick. The cotton wick attaches to a stone. This lamp has effusion oil in it. It is then lit for 4-6 minutes and then blown out. The stone is now heated, hot and red. This porous stone stays hot for 12-16 hours and the scent is drawn through the wick/stone into the air.
Here is what I have found out through lots of research: Facts you need to know to properly use them.
- always use 91% alcohol. NO OTHER % WILL WORK. It has to be!!!!! I buy mine in Walmart for about $1.00
- After you use your lamp and it has cooled off, place the wick into a sealed, small tupperware that is filled with 91% alcohol. Let is soak overnight or longer. I always have two and alternate. One is burning and one is soaking.
- Please be careful with them. Alcohol is flammable. If you have little ones around, place your burner WAY out of their reach. These lamps are very, very safe but like everything else (even candles) use common sense. They should never be knocked over.
- Use good essential oils or fragrance oils in your mixture (I'll show you the link later on in this post).
- Take good care of your wicks. If you don't soak them, they "croak". They are $10.00 a piece and should last between 6-12 months. If they are burning out on you and you can't light them, you are doing something wrong.
- never, never fill your effusion lamp greater then 50%. That's right. Fill it with oil less than half way.
- one effusion lamp is plenty for my house (3500 square feet), I can smell it all the way upstairs. They are great in a basement too.
- Experiment with the oils. Some are very potent and some are not. If it's too strong, add more alcohol.
- I have used many types of wicks. Lampe Berger makes the best!!! Don't waste your money on others, they burn out too fast. These cost around $9.95 and if you put it into a Google seach you'll find plenty out there. I believe I have seen them on Ebay as well.
- They claim there are health benefits to using these lamps. When you consider they burn alcohol (which kills germs) it makes sense. Effusion lamps give off negatively charged ions that kill mold, germs, odor particles and other allergens. One thing for sure, they do not produce soot like candles do.
- Unlike candles, they can be left alone while you are out or sleeping. Wow....that's great. I come home from being out and my house smells wonderful.
- They do have a long history. I'm not going go into that, but if you are curious: http://www.effusionlampsandoils.com/faq.html
- 16 FL OZ. (473) ISOPROPYL ALCOHOL 91% VOL.
- 5 ml OF ESSENTIAL OIL (about a teaspoon)
- 0.5 OZ. OF DISTILLED WATER
Let your lamp burn up all of the fluid and then cap it off.
I've noticed that the longer my mixes are around, the better they get (kind of like fine wine).
Pictured here is an effusion lamp, the diffusion cap, the snuffer cap, the wick with stone attached and a tupperware that holds the wick over night.
Here is a photo of the Lampe Berger wicks that I use.
Below are some of the scents I have used. There are plenty of Internet sites that sell essential oils and fragrance oils. I purchased mine from:
I have used both fragrance and essential oils.
So now you know what to buy, how to put it together (they usually come with directions) and how to take care of the wick.
Now...Directions for use.
- Fill you lamp a little less than half with the oil that you have made.
- Put your wick in. Let it sit in there for 20 minutes to absorb the oil.
- Light it. Let the flame burn (it will burn high up there 5-6 inches)
- Let it burn for 4-6 minutes (don't leave it unattended and be careful where you are lighting it)
- Blow it out
- Place the diffuser cap on it (that gets hot too so be careful)
- leave it and it will scent your entire house
- Let the lamp burn until all the fluid is gone if you want. If the scent is becoming too strong, then use the snuffer cap. This essentially turns it off.
- When it has cooled, pull the wick and place it into the tupperware container that is filled with 91% alcohol. Leave it in there until you want to use it again. Next time you use it, take it out of the container, place into the lamp and light it up.
Occasionally you will go to light up that wick and it won't work. That means that you need to soak you wick longer. When all else fails, take the wick apart and cut off the black part (it looks burned) and put the wick back together. It's a delicate procedure, but it works very well and your wick will be like new.
I'm sure I probably left something out, so if you have any questions please don't hesitate to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or just post a comment on this site.I will gladly answer any questions you may have. These are wonderful lamps to use but as you can see, they do require some knowledge and little work. You will be happy with the results.
I would love to hear back from anyone that has found a really great scent. Maybe we can all share that information.
I wish I could remember the name of the Canadian web site (it was very much like Garden Web) where all the folks gave me such wonderful information about these lamps.
Christy01 02 03