Do Lamp Candle Warmers Work?

What Are Lamp Candle Warmers?

Lamp candle warmers, also sometimes called wax warmers, are devices that heat and melt scented wax to fill a room with fragrance. They consist of a light bulb or heating element contained within a housing that sits atop a dish. The dish holds wax melts, wax cubes, or the top portion of a candle cut off to fit inside. When the lamp is turned on, the heating element gently warms and melts the wax, releasing its aroma into the air.

Unlike burning candles which use an open flame, lamp candle warmers melt wax using electric heat. This allows them to warm scented wax safely without the dangers of an open flame. It also provides more control over the melting and fragrance release. The wax melts gradually over time, infusing the whole room with the scent rather than just the immediate candle area.

Lamp candle warmers allow you to experience the scents of candles without lighting them. They are an ideal option for safely enjoying candle fragrances in homes with children or pets where open flames may be risky. They can also help extend the life of candles by allowing the wax to be warmed repeatedly.

How Do Lamp Candle Warmers Work?

Lamp candle warmers utilize a simple method to heat and disperse fragrance from wax candles or melts. The main components are a lamp base, light bulb, and warming plate. When the light bulb is turned on, it emits heat that transfers to the metal warming plate placed above it. The warming plate acts as a heated surface to melt wax placed on top.

As the wax melts, fragrant oil is released into the air through evaporation. The lamp bulb provides just enough concentrated heat to melt the top layer of wax without burning the candle wick. This allows the warmer to continuously melt more wax and emit fragrance over time, without having an open flame.

A lampshade over the warming plate helps direct heat downwards while also trapping some of the rising fragrant air currents. Vents in the lamp housing then allow the warmed, scented air to naturally convect upwards and circulate out into the surrounding room. So in summary, the warming plate, shade, and vents work together to both melt wax and disperse fragrance using the heat and airflow from an interior light bulb.

Benefits of Using Lamp Candle Warmers

Lamp candle warmers provide several benefits over burning traditional candles:

Safer than burning candles: With a candle warmer, there is no open flame. This reduces the risk of accidental fires and burns. Candle warmers are safer to use around children and pets.

Energy efficient: Candle warmers use less energy than burning a candle. They only use about 15-25 watts. This makes them an energy efficient option for home fragrance.

Customizable scents: You can use your favorite scented candles or wax melts in a candle warmer. This allows you to customize the fragrance in your home. Candle warmers give you more flexibility over scent options compared to burning a scented candle.

Drawbacks of Lamp Candle Warmers

While lamp candle warmers have their benefits, they also come with some drawbacks to consider:

Limited Scent Throw

One of the biggest drawbacks of lamp candle warmers is their limited scent throw. The warming plate is small and contained, so the scent is not able to disperse throughout a room as well as from a traditional candle. The scent throw may only reach a couple feet around the lamp.

Require Electricity

Lamp candle warmers require electricity to operate, unlike traditional candles. This means you cannot use them during power outages. It also restricts where you can place them in your home, as they need to be near an outlet.

Wax Can Spill

If the wax melts more quickly than expected or the dish on the warmer overflows, wax can drip down the side and make a mess. The wax can be difficult to clean if it drips onto surfaces like wood furniture or carpets.

Tips for Using Lamp Candle Warmers

To get the most enjoyment and functionality out of your lamp candle warmer, follow these tips:

Proper Placement

Determine the ideal location in your home to place the lamp candle warmer before plugging it in. Avoid placing it near curtains, furniture, or other flammable items. Set it on a stable, flat surface away from high traffic areas.

Use a Timer

Consider plugging your lamp candle warmer into an outlet timer. This allows you to program when it turns on and shuts off automatically. Turning it on 30 minutes before you arrive home fills your space with scent. Shutting off after several hours prevents overheating.

Regular Cleaning

Dust and wax can build up on the ceramic plate over time. Unplug the unit and wipe it down at least once a month using isopropyl alcohol to maintain performance.

Proper Maintenance

Only use the recommended bulb wattage for your model. Replace bulbs that burn out immediately to prevent damage. Clean melted wax off the plate after each use.

Safety Considerations

As with any electrical device, take some precautions while using a lamp candle warmer:

  • Supervise children and pets around a lamp candle warmer, especially models that get hot on the outside.
  • Don’t leave a lamp candle warmer on for extended periods of time when unattended.
  • Make sure the lamp candle warmer is on a stable, level surface away from curtains or other flammable materials.
  • Check that the warmer is unplugged before cleaning or moving it.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for safe usage.
  • Inspect electrical cords for damage and don’t use candle warmers with frayed or exposed wires.
  • Use only appropriate light bulbs and wattages recommended for the specific model.

With proper precautions, lamp candle warmers can be a safer alternative to burning candles, reducing the risks of open flames in the home.

Popular Brands and Models

When looking for a quality lamp candle warmer, some top brands and models to consider include:

Candle Warmers Etc

Candle Warmers Etc is one of the leading manufacturers of lamp candle warmers. Some of their top models include:

  • Lantern Candle Warmer – A best seller with a vintage lantern design and auto on/off feature.
  • Ellipse Candle Warmer – A unique ellipse shape with brushed nickel or oil rubbed bronze finish.
  • Orchid Flower Candle Warmer – Features a hand-crafted orchid flower design.


Homemory makes stylish and affordable lamp warmers. Popular options include:

  • Ceramic Flower Candle Warmer – Comes in various floral designs with a safety auto-off switch.
  • Hammered Metal Candle Warmer – Has an elegant hammered metal design in silver or bronze.
  • Clear Glass Candle Warmer – A classic clear glass design that blends into any decor.

Other top brands like Yankee Candle, Scentsy, and Candle Impressions also offer quality and stylish lamp candle warmers to consider.

Comparisons to Other Home Fragrance Methods

Lamp candle warmers offer some key differences compared to other popular home fragrance methods like burning candles, essential oil diffusers, and plug-in air fresheners:

vs. Burning Candles

  • Candle warmers melt candle wax without an open flame, reducing the fire hazard.
  • They don’t produce smoke or soot like burning candles.
  • Lamp warmers allow you to fully use up candle wax instead of “wasting” the last bit that won’t burn.
  • There’s no need to monitor a burning flame.

vs. Essential Oil Diffusers

  • Candle warmers only require candle wax, while diffusers use essential oils which can be more expensive.
  • The scent throw may be stronger from melting candle wax than diffusing oils.
  • No need to refill water in a candle warmer like many diffusers require.

vs. Plug-in Air Fresheners

  • Candle warmers provide more natural fragrance from candle wax versus artificial fragrances used in many plug-ins.
  • The scent variety can be wider with various candle options.
  • Candle warmers are reusable with just an electricity source, while plug-ins require constant repurchasing of refills.

Cost Considerations

Lamp candle warmers provide a cost-effective way to fill your home with fragrance compared to traditional candles. Here are some key points on the pricing and operating costs:

The average price for a basic lamp warmer is $10-20. More advanced models with features like timer functions or remote controls can cost $30-50. High-end designer models may cost over $100.

Watch for sales, coupons and deals from retailers to help lower the purchase price. Popular times to buy include holiday weekends and inventory clearance events.

Once purchased, there are no recurring costs for lamp warmers besides electricity. They use minimal energy – the equivalent of a single lightbulb when running. This makes them an affordable option for long-term use.

Compared to constantly buying new candles, the lamp warmer can pay for itself over time. The wax melts used are also fairly inexpensive, often $1-5 for a pack of cubes.

Overall, lamp candle warmers provide pleasant ambiance at a fraction of the price of constantly burning through traditional candles. The low operating costs make them a budget-friendly way to scent your home.

The Bottom Line on Lamp Candle Warmers

When looking at the overall verdict on the effectiveness and value of lamp candle warmers, there are a few key takeaways:

First, lamp candle warmers can be an effective way to scent your home or office with the lovely aroma of a scented candle, without having an open flame. The heated plate of the lamp warmer gently melts the top of a candle, releasing its fragrance. This allows you to safely leave the candle warming for hours, versus a lit candle which can only burn for a few hours before the wax is used up.

Second, lamp warmers are a cost effective option in the long run compared to buying traditional candles. You can reuse the same candle over and over with a warmer, getting significantly more use out of it. Warmers also allow you more flexibility to blend fragrances, change scents seasonally, or match a scent to your mood.

However, warmers do come with some drawbacks. They can take a while to melt the candle and fragrance a room, versus an open flame. The scent also may not be quite as strong or evenly distributed as a burning candle. Warmers require electricity to run, while traditional candles do not.

Overall, lamp candle warmers can be an excellent candle alternative for many households. If you want a safe, cost-effective way to scent your home with lovely candle fragrances for hours on end, a quality warmer is worth considering.

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