10 Candle Safety Tips for Christmas

The Christmas season will be here soon, and garlands and holly will cover our homes. Scented candles will flicker amid the decorations, filling each room with the comforting smells of gingerbread and sugar cookies. Yet, those cheerful flames can create problems if you’re not careful; candles cause 2 percent of reported house fires.

We want your holiday to remain bright, happy, and safe, so we’ve compiled a few candle safety tips you’ll want to keep in mind during your yuletide celebrations.


  1. Never leave a burning candle. Always keep a lit candle in sight so you can act quickly if it falls over or catches a nearby object on fire.


  1. Keep lit candles away from flammable objects. Make sure you place them in clear areas, where flames can’t reach draperies, decorations, or other items that may burn quickly.


  1. Place candles in the center of your tables and away from children. Make sure you put them in safe locations so passersby won’t knock them over and children can’t easily snatch them.


  1. Trim wicks to ¼ inch before lighting. Long wicks may burn and drip unevenly.


  1. Use proper candle holders. Use holders large enough to collect wax and sturdy enough to handle heat.


  1. Don’t let a candle burn all the way down.


  1. Use a snuffer to extinguish candles. Never use water. Splashing a candle with water may cause wax to splatter or glass containers to break.


  1. Place candles in well-ventilated rooms and away from drafts. Only burn candles in rooms with plenty of airflow, but keep each flame clear of drafts that might blow lightweight items in its path.


  1. Snuff candles that don’t burn properly. Extinguish the candle if it smokes, sputters, or burns too high. Then, you can try cooling it, trimming the wick, and relighting.


  1. Let a candle cool completely before placing it in the trash.