How Tall Should Wood Wicks Be?

Candles are incomplete without their wicks. It can be a chore to determine how tall wood wicks should be. Depending on different candles and containers, wood wick sizes can differ. For that reason, it can be confusing for you to determine the wood wick length.

The best way to determine the size of wood wicks is through the process of a burn test. The length of wood wicks will differ from one container to another. Depending on the depth of the candle container, the wood wick should be placed. Then the length should be adjusted.

cutting wooden wicks

If your candle wicks are not of the appropriate size, the candle will fail to burn cleanly. It will also fail to give you the fragrance of your desire. The candle will melt in the wrong manner as well. So, to understand how tall should wood wicks be, stick around till the end!

How To Pick The Right Sized Wick?

The right wick size depends on the depth and diameter of your container. By setting up the size of the wick in a manner that is not too long for the candle, at the same time, not too short for the surface, you can pick the right size of the wick.

The right-sized wick creates an appropriately sized flame. The wick burns cleanly and has almost no carbon build-up. The melt pool extends to the edge of the container for the candle. The depth of the melt pool is approximately around ½ inch deep.

So, while placing the wood wick in the container, make sure that you pour in your melted candle wax first. As the wax reaches your desired surface, let the wick set with the candle. Do not trim the wick way too early. Rather, wait till the candle is set completely. Then, trim the candle wick so that it is from 1/4 to 1/8 inch above the surface.

This will result in the desired melt pool. The candle will not burn down the middle of the container, creating a tunnel. At the same time, the candle will not flicker continuously as it is not too tall. The candle will burn for a long time and give you the fragrance that you want.

Figure Out Wick Size With Burn Test

To figure out the right size wick for your candle, it is important to conduct a burn test. A burn test helps to determine how well your wick is performing in your candle. This comes in especially handy when you are unsure of what wick size to use for your candles. So, it is an important step in figuring out how tall your candle wicks should be.

Step One: Trim The Wicks

Before starting the burn test, you have to trim your wicks. It is recommended for cotton wicks to be 0.25 inches. However, that is too long to use for wooden wicks. In the case of wooden wicks, make sure to trim them from a length of 1/4 to 1/8 inches from the surface.

You might want to use a wick selection and a sample kit for this process if you are a beginner. Trimming the wicks can be difficult as the sizes are too small. You can use the help of wick selection guides to help narrow down the best size for your test.

Step Two: Place The Candles On A Heat Resistant Surface

In this step, place the candles on a heat-resistant surface. Make sure that they are eight inches apart from one another. Also, make sure that there is no draft present in the room. It is ideal to keep the temperature of the room between 68 and 86 degrees Fahrenheit.

It is vital that you put the candles on a heat-resistant surface, or away from any direct source of heat. This is important because you have to make sure that no external source of heat is melting the candle. As a result, you will get a proper result from the burn test.

Step Three: Light The Candles And Observe

Light the candles that you have selected for the test. Set an alarm for two hours. The candles are to be left burning for two hours. However, do not leave the burning candles unattended. Leaving them unattended may result in safety hazards and unexpected accidents.

After two hours, observe and record the details of the burning candles. You can also take separate photographs of the candles to better understand the results. At this stage of burning, the melt pool should be reaching the edges. Use the findings to interpret the result of the right length of the wooden wick.

Step Four: Find The Results

In this step, interpret the results to find what length of wick works the best for your candles. Notice if the melt pool of the candle is too small in width. If that is the case, then the flame was not large enough to melt the candle wax properly. As a result, tunneling may occur. You can mark that wick as too short to be used for candles.

You must also check to make sure that the flame of your candle is not higher than 0.5 inches. The candle should not smoke or become too hot. If that is the case, label that wick as too large to be used for candles.

The ideal wood wick will have a stable melt pool and a fixed flicker of flame. This will help the candle to achieve a full melt pool in around two hours. The melt pool would be approximately 0.5 inches deep after the end of every burn cycle. The flame height stays ideally between 0.375 inches and 1 inch, depending on the size of your candle.

Importance Of The Right Wick Size

The candle wick is one of the most important parts of the candle that you need to get right. It is vital that you use the right wick size. The right wick size ensures that your candle does not mushroom badly, if at all. It also ensures the right melt pool, a fixed flicker, and a strong fragrance.

Without the right size of the wick, the candle will not burn in a clean way. It will leave a large amount of wax residue in the container. Not only that, with too short wicks, the candle will have tunneling, making the candle wax and fragrances go to waste.

On the other hand, too large of a wick will melt the candle way too fast. It might even cause a large amount of carbon build-up. Due to the high heat, the candle container might crack as well. This is why it is very important that you get the right size wick for your candle.

How Wick Size Differentiates Between Various Waxes

Wick sizes may differentiate highly between various waxes. For a quick overview, the following table may help in understanding the differentiation of wick sizes according to different waxes:

WaxTealightExtra-smallSmallMediumLargeExtra Large2X Large2XL Multi-Wick
SoyMax M124BECO.75CD 4CD 8CD 12CD 18CD 22CD 26CD 4 6″ (triple wicked)
Cargill NatureWax C-6 Soy/Coconut WaxECO 1CD 4CD 8CD 14CD 24CD 8CD 10CD 4 6” (triple wicked)
Ecosoya CB 135LX 8LX 12LX14LX18LX20LX24LX18LX14
IGI Comfort Blend WaxLX 8LX 14LX 16LX18LX20LX24LX 26LX 16
IGI 4688 (J223) WaxLX 8LX 14LX 16LX 18LX 22LX 24LX 26LX 16
IGI 6046 Coconut/Paraffin Blend WaxECO.75CD 3CD 4CD 8CD 12CD 18CD 6 (double wicked)CD 4 6” (triple wicked)


To sum it all up, there is no fixed answer to the question- how tall should wood wicks be. You have to determine the size according to the depth and diameter of your candle container.

Because, in the end, getting the wick size right is very important for the candle to work properly.

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