This is the most popular method for melting candle wax. It is also the method used in most candle making guides and one would find more information concerning it. But what is a double boiler exactly? And why should it be used?
What is a Double Boiler?
A double boiler is made using two pots or pans with one placed in the other. The bottom pot is the one in direct contact with the heat and holds water. A second pot or pan is then placed inside the bottom pot with boiling water. This second pot holds the wax. First, this is done because wax can be flammable and direct contact from the pot holding the wax to the heat source would most likely cause a fire. Another reason is that the method helps the wax to melt evenly especially with the boiling water below it.
There are specially made double boilers that can be purchased. But you can make a custom double boiler yourself using two pots in your kitchen. The pot on top containing the wax is the pouring pot. If you are doing this, then it means that upper pot should be reserved for candle making. This is because it is no longer safe to be used for cooking any longer. The lower pot can still be used for cooking since it only held water.
How to Melt Candle Wax in a Double Boiler
In using a double boiler, one also needs a heat source. Gas stoves are the most popular at homes and can be used. Electric stoves can also be used for this. But set the heat level to medium. Melting wax does not take long, so you should keep stirring your wax while it melts and constantly watch its temperature (with a thermometer, of course) to make sure it does not go beyond the flashpoint of the wax. Each type of wax has a different flashpoint.
This is the temperature of the wax causes it to become highly flammable.
Generally, your melting wax temperature should not exceed 200°F. While the wax melts you can do other things such as setting up your wick in the container or mold. But constantly monitor the wax. It will only melt in a few minutes and even waxes like soy wax with lower melting point would take a shorter time to melt.
In adding scent or colour. You can do so while the wax melts, still in the pot. Or you can turn off the heat, let the wax cool to suitable temperature (usually the flashpoint of the fragrance) if already more than that and then add scent oil as you please.
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