Candles for preparedness, or simply for ambience. The lights go out when the grid goes down. One of several ways to light up a room is the candle. So I thought it would be interesting to figure out how much do candles cost per hour when they’re lit. I know, I’m a geek that way…
There’s nothing quite like the warm glow of several lit candles in a room at night. Some may find it to be romantic. Or simply calming. If you’ve ever sat around a campfire, you know the somewhat mesmerizing effect of watching a flickering flame.
Sure, there are other sources of light that you might use during a power outage or grid-down situation such as the ‘hurricane’ oil lamp, flashlights, headlamps, solar-powered landscape LED lights, lanterns, etc..
However lets look at the ordinary candle as an option too.
How Much Does It Cost To Burn A Candle?
I figured out how much it costs per hour to burn a candle for each of several different types. Tea light, votive, pillar, and taper candle sticks. I wanted to discover what might be a economical choice for stocking up on some candles for preparedness.
I had a look at lots of the candles available from Amazon and calculated the cost per hour to burn them – while looking for the best price.
Here are my updated results for the lowest operating candle costs…
(2022 candle prices – obviously subject to change)
2-cents per hour cost for Tea Light Candles
4 Hour Burn Time
The following Tea Light candles cost approximately $19 for 200 candles. They will burn ~4 hours. It’s the least expensive type. However they are tea lights, and don’t give off the same flame as ‘regular’ candles. They do serve their purpose though. We do have a number of decorative holders around the house that accept tea light candles. They are nice in their own way.
4-Hour Unscented Tea Lights (200)
4-cents per hour cost for Votive Candles
10 Hour Burn Time
Based on current pricing, the least cost-per-hour candle that I could find of the Votive style candles are as follows. $31 cost for 72 votive candles. That’s 43-cents each. They’re approximately 1.2″ tall and 1.5″ wide. They burn approximately 10 hours each. I have a lot of these too. They’re easy to deal with and fit nicely in votive style holders. They burn a bit brighter than tea lights.
10-Hour Unscented White Votive (72)
10-cents per hour cost for Pillar Candles
43 Hour Burn Time
These are bigger. If Pillar candles are your style, one of the best value seems to be the following. They are 5″ tall, 2.75″ wide. Long burning 43-hour Pillars… They cost $56 for 12 candles. That’s $4.67 each. I have lots of these too. I like them for their longer burn time.
43-Hour Unscented Pillars (12)
12-cents per hour cost for Dinner Candlesticks
6 Hour Burn Time
These are your typical candlesticks. There are all sorts of them, some taller than others, etc. They cost more to burn, but they are unique in their appearance. Great for the table. One of the best value (cost vs. burn time) for the typical dinner style candlesticks are apparently the following. They are 7″ tall with a 0.8″ base. They’ll burn for 6+ hours. These candles currently cost 75-cents each ($45 cost for 34 candles).
7″ Candlesticks (45)
Candles are probably the least safe when it comes to alternative lighting. It stands to reason that an open burning flame in your house could present a problem. A few common sense tips include the following:
- Set candle on a non-flammable solid base (holder)
- Don’t burn near anything flammable (curtains, etc.)
- Kids in the house? Use extreme caution re: placement
- Pets in the house? Be sure the candle is out of reach
- It’s never good to leave a burning flame unattended
- Never leave the house with candles burning
Store candles in a cool place (out of direct sunlight) so they will not melt or warp. Ask me how I know…
Candles For Preparedness
So, do any of you store extra candles for alternative lighting?
A number of years ago I purchased a lot of candles for this purpose. Votive seemed to be the best general value, so I focused on that style. Although I also purchased a quantity of tea light, pillar, and taper style.