Introduction: Remove Candle Wax With Hot Water

I’ll show you the easiest way I know for removing candle wax so you can reuse the jar. Besides your candle, you’ll need a chopstick and some hot water. I’ve seen folks suggest a method using a freezer and a knife, and I’m here to tell you there’s a safer, easier way!

Step 1: Poke Some Holes

Picture of Poke Some Holes

Use your chopstick to poke holes in the wax so the water can more easily get to the bottom of the jar.

Step 2: Pour Hot Water

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Pour in your hot water. It should be just off the boil— if it’s not hot enough, it won’t get the job done. The water starts to melt the wax, which floats to the surface. Enjoy the show while it lasts, then let it cool down for a few hours.

Step 3: Dump After Cooling

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Eventually all the wax pools on top and solidifies again as it cools down. Then you can just scoop it out and dump the wax. Use a strainer or paper towel to prevent chunks of wax from going down your sink.

Step 4: Clean Up and Enjoy!

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If your jar has labels you want to remove, soak it in soapy water for an hour or more. The labels and any excess wax should come off with a sponge, otherwise you can rinse it with another blast of hot water.

Now you’ve got a new juice glass, or some craft supply storage. Let me know how you’d use your candle jar in the comments.


christine828 (author)2017-09-17

WARNING: Don't ever let the hot wax go down your drain. I did, and had to have the plumber come An expensive and embarrassing mistake!!

HowardT12 (author)2016-10-14

Gotta remember this one! Thanks.

Ungenious (author)2016-09-20

Love the GIFs! Thanks for sharing.

TracyW68 (author)2016-08-29

I just use wax cleaner. Works Ann's smells awesome!

TracyW68 (author)2016-08-29

I use candle wax like a charm Ann's smells great too

fixfireleo (author)2016-08-11

why not just microwave it, pour out the wax then wash with hot, soapy water?

bekathwia (author)fixfireleo2016-08-12

I couldn't microwave my jar because the base of the wick is made from metal.

JoseC176 (author)bekathwia2016-08-25

...uh maybe grab a pair of pliers and pull the metal out? Then microwave it and wash it with warm soapy water?

EmmitS (author)fixfireleo2016-08-12

first, the wax might overheat and catch fire. second, it will still leave a layer of wax in the jar.

Zaacharia (author)2016-08-14

Don't throw the wax away - save your dryer lint in those tiny paper cups and drip the wax over it - perfect fire-starter.

BeckyJoM (author)Zaacharia2016-08-25

a small piece of waxed paper (which used to be used a lot more when I was a kid-than what I'm aware of now ) or even the white paper that meat is wrapped in after butchering, etc. > makes a wonderful fire / trash fire starter-also ;-) .

KronoNaut (author)2016-08-23

Thank you for this. A much easier and safer method than I was doing.

onemoroni1 (author)2016-08-14

I do the microwave method. I dig out the wick metal and just melt it and pour it out. You will burn anything in the microwave if you want. Use common sense.

royhchiu (author)2016-08-12

I using similar method, except instead of just pouring hot water onto the wax, I "double boil" to raise the water temp.

Rebou (author)2016-08-11

What a great idea, I shall certainly use this easy looking method in the future.

thepoisonivy (author)2016-08-11

This is smart and simple. Thank you! I would, however, advise that anybody reusing the jars for something food related be careful; lead is often present in glass used for decorative candles.

andrej (author)2016-08-11

some labels goes off with the oil - just spill some oil on peace of paper towel, attach it to label and let it soak.

coryalex (author)2016-08-11

So simple! I love it!

I used to heat them in the oven and toss out the wax... but that still wasn't perfect, and I ran the risk of burning myself or making a mess.

This is so safe and easy. Thanks for sharing! :)

AlainaZ (author)2016-08-09

What a clever solution. I usually melt it over the stove and pour it into the trash.

The brand candle I use makes perfect little bowls for olives, crackers, etc for my dinner parties

bekathwia (author)AlainaZ2016-08-10

Awesome, thanks for sharing!

gmendez3 (author)2016-08-09

It comes SOO in handy with my latest Instructable hahah fun!

bekathwia (author)gmendez32016-08-10

I enjoyed your candle tute, must smell so nice! Also your profile pic with David is most excellent.

About This Instructable




Bio: Becky Stern is a content creator at Instructables. She has authored hundreds of tutorials about everything from wearable electronics to knitting. Before joining Instructables, Becky ... More »
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