How Long Does A Tea-Light Candle Burn?

How Long Does A Tea Light Candle Burn

The average burn time of a tea-light candle typically ranges from 3 to 5 hours. However, this duration can vary depending on factors like the quality of the candle, the size of the tea light, the type of wax and wick used, and environmental conditions. 

However, some may burn for a shorter period, while others, particularly high-quality or larger ones, may last longer. To determine the exact burn time for a specific tea light candle, it’s advisable to refer to the manufacturer’s information or packaging, as they often provide precise details regarding burn times for their products.

Let’s explore more candle tricks and tips.

What is a Tea Light Candle?

A tea light candle is a small candle enclosed in a thin metal or plastic case. This special design allows the wax to melt and stay inside as it burns. Tea lights are usually affordable and come in large quantities. You can light several of them together to create a gentle, cozy light. These candles can be unscented or have a fragrance. You can also find various decorative holders to put them in if you want to use them as decoration.

Factors Affecting Burn Time

Factors Affecting Burn Time

Quality of the Candle: The quality of the candle itself plays a significant role in determining burn time. Higher-quality candles are typically designed to burn more efficiently and can last longer. Factors influencing quality include the type of wax used, the quality of the wick, and the manufacturing process.

Candle Size: The physical size of it can have a direct impact on how long it burns. Standard tea light candles have a specific size and typically burn for a certain duration. Larger ones will generally burn for a longer time, while mini ones will have shorter burn times.

Wax and Wick Type: The type of wax used in the candle can influence burn time. Common types of candle wax include paraffin wax, soy wax, and beeswax, each of which has its burn characteristics. Additionally, the quality and composition of the wick can be affected.

Environmental Factors: Environmental conditions, such as drafts and air circulation, can impact the burn time. Drafts can cause the flame to flicker and the wax to burn unevenly, potentially shortening the burn time.

Usage Considerations: How it is used also matters. For example, trimming the wick before lighting the candle and ensuring a stable and level surface for it can help optimize burn time and safety.

Manufacturer Information: Manufacturers often provide specific information about the expected burn time of their tea light candles. This information can be found on the product packaging or in the product description. It’s advisable to refer to this information for accurate estimates.

How To Make Tealight Candles Last Longer?

If you want your tealight candles to burn for a longer time, follow these easy steps:

  • When you light a new candle, let the melted wax cover the whole surface. This helps it burn evenly next time. If you only burn the center, it won’t last as long.
  • Keep the candle wick (the string in the middle) short, about ¼ inch. It gives a better, brighter flame and helps the candle burn evenly. Trim it when the candle is cool.
  • Don’t put it where there’s a breeze from vents, fans, or drafts. This can make it burn unevenly and create smoke or soot.
  • Make sure there’s no stuff in the melted wax pool. If there’s debris, it can mess up the candle’s burning and scent. Keep the wick clear.
  • Wait for it to cool down before lighting it again. It takes about 2 hours for it to cool completely. This is important for safety and making it work well. Don’t try to trim it when it’s still hot, or you might burn your fingers. Even if it seems like a long wait, it’s worth it to let it cool down.

Tea Light Candle Burn Times

Candle TypeWax TypeCasing TypeBurn TimePrice (Approximate)Light Type
Supermarket Tea Light 1ParaffinMetal3 hours 17 minutesApprox $0.12 (£0.10) per tea lightSmall pinpoint light source
Supermarket Tea Light 2ParaffinPlastic2 hours 41 minutesApprox $0.30 (£0.24) per tea lightWarmer wider spread light
Independent Tea LightBeeswaxMetal5 hours 32 minutesApprox $3.50 (£3.00) per tea lightYellow/gold small but radiant light

As for votive candles

BrandColorHeightWick SizeWax Burn TimeWick Burn Time
Interiors By DesignWhite1 inchhalf inch2 hours2.5 hours
MainstaysBurgundy1 3/4 inches3/4 inch3 hours4 hours
Yankee CandleBlue1 3/4 inches3/4 inch3.5 hours4.5 hours
CitronellaYellow1.5 inchhalf inch3 hours4 hours

On average, votive candles burn through most of their wax in about three hours, with the wick continuing to burn for an additional half to one hour.

These burn times can vary depending on factors like wick size, candle weight, and wax composition. While experts suggest longer burn times, this test shows shorter burn times for votive candles.

The type of wax and wax blends, as well as design features, can also impact burn times for different candle types.

Finally, for tealights:

  • They are smaller, and on average, they have a burn time of about 2 hours, but some may be advertised to burn for 4 to 6 hours.
  • In a test of generic cheap tealights, they burned for 1.55 hours, while other reports mentioned varying burn times in online reviews.

Can a Tea Light Cause a Fire?

Yes, a tea light can potentially cause a fire if not used safely. Here are some tips to avoid fire risks:

Surface: Always place your tea light on a flat, heat-resistant surface. As it burns, the wax inside can get very hot. Placing it on a flammable surface can lead to a fire. You can use heat-resistant plates or pot stands if you don’t have a decorative holder. Make sure the surface is level to prevent wax spillage.

Positioning: Also, give off heat, and having flammable materials like curtains or paper near them can be a fire risk. Avoid placing tea lights where they might be easily bumped or knocked, especially around children and pets.

Never Leave Unattended: Never leave a lit tea light unattended. Even though it will burn out eventually, there’s still a risk of debris or objects falling near the candle, potentially causing a fire. Be especially cautious during events or celebrations where alcohol is being consumed, as this can increase the risk of leaving a candle unattended or forgotten.

How to Extinguish Tea Light Candles

If you want to put out a tea light candle before it burns out naturally, you can follow these steps:

Extinguishing a Tea Light Candle:

  • Blowing on the flame can work, but be careful not to blow wax around.
  • The best way is to use a candle snuffer, which looks like a bell on a stick. It covers the flame and puts it out without causing wax splatters.
  • Avoid using water to extinguish a tea light, as it can be messy and risk spilling hot wax.

Relighting a Tea Light Candle:

  • It’s recommended to relight a tea light only if it still has half or more of its wax left. If there’s less than half, it might not burn evenly.
  • If it is less than half burnt, it’s better to discard it rather than trying to relight it.

Long Lasting Tea Light Candles:

  • Some tea lights are labeled as “long-lasting” with burn times of over 8 hours.
  • These typically have a larger diameter or height and more wax, which makes them more expensive.
  • Consider your intended use before buying long-lasting ones, as most domestic uses don’t require such extended burn times.
  • For shorter events, a regular one may be sufficient.

Battery-Operated Alternatives:

  • If you want the effect without the fire risk, battery-operated tea light candles are available. These plastic replicas have LED flickering flames and come in various designs.

Manufacturer Information

Manufacturer Information

If you want to know about tea light candles, here’s how:

  • Check the candle package for details like how long it burns and safety tips.
  • Look at the product description if you’re buying online or in a store. It tells you how it works and what’s in it.
  • Go to the candle maker’s website for more info.
  • If you’re still curious, contact them through phone or email.
  • When buying online, the seller’s page might have a link to the maker’s website for more info.

To get the best and most accurate info about a tea light candle, go to the people who make it or their customer support. That way, you’ll have all the answers you need.


1. How long does tea candles burn?

Tea light candles have a relatively short burn time, typically up to about 4 hours.

2. What candle burns for 8 hours?

Stonebriar Long Burning Tealight Candles are known to burn for up to 8 hours.

3. Can you leave a tea candle on overnight?

No, leaving a candle burning overnight is not safe and can pose a serious fire hazard.

4. How long do LED tea lights last?

LED tea lights can last about 200 hours with a new battery, as they use efficient CR2032 button cells.

5. Can I burn a candle for 2 hours?

No, It’s generally recommended not to burn a candle for longer than four hours and to allow it to cool for at least two hours before relighting.

6. Can a candle burn for 3 hours?

Candles should not burn for more than four hours at a time to ensure safety, and they should be extinguished before leaving a room or going to bed.

7. What is the 8 10 rule for candles?

The 8-10 rule suggests placing one 8-ounce candle for every 10 feet of room space to evenly distribute the scent.

8. Can a candle burn all day?

No, Candles should not burn for more than 4 hours at a time to prevent potential fire hazards and ensure safe use.

Final Words

In conclusion, the burn time of a tea light candle varies depending on several factors, including the type of wax, casing, and the quality of the candle. While most tea lights last around 3 to 5 hours, our experiments revealed significant differences in burn times. 

Furthermore, Beeswax tea lights burned the longest but came at a higher cost, while paraffin-based tea lights, whether encased in metal or plastic, had shorter burn times. The choice of tea light can affect the ambiance it creates, as different light types emerge from varying burn times.

Lastly, whether you seek a small pinpoint light, a warmer wider spread light, or a small but radiant yellow-gold light, understanding the factors influencing burn time is essential for making the most of your tea light candles.