Can You Use Oil Lamps Indoors? (Facts Explained)

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Most people want to know if oil Lamps are safe indoors. 

This question arises because of the way Oil Lamps are designed and the types of fuel used to light-up the lamp.

Oil lamps are safe to use indoors to light up the room and provide brightness at night. However, you must not allow outside breeze to get inside since oil lamps are specifically designed for indoor usage. 

The oil lamps are alternative to electricity. They serve in the absence of electricity to provide ambience.

Oil lamps are built to keep indoor warm, and enhance the lighting mood of the users. They provide excellent ambience and durable light you can afford.

The oil lamps are simple designs and are easy to use. Therefore when using oil lamps indoors, simply follow the instructions for safety purposes.

In this article, we will answer some of the often asked questions about oil lamps. 

What Kind Of Oil Should I Use On An Oil Lamp?

The important aspect of an oil lamp is being able to select the best oil that’ll burn well, safe, reliable and healthy — since it is an indoor appliance.

The lamp oil is specifically made for indoor oil lamops because it not highly combustible. Another alternaltuive oil you can use is the coloured lamp oil. This one is mainly designed for oil lamp.

Though, coloured lamp oil has the capacity to stain lamp glass shade, chimney, burner and discolor the lamp in the long run. 

To prevent fire outbreak and healthy wise purpose, avoid using highly ignitable substances like:

  • Diesel fuel
  • Mineral spirits
  • Acetone 
  • Propane
  • Paint thinners 
  • Household cleaners/turpentine 
  • Gasoline 

Also avoid using citronella oil for repelling insects only in the outdoor lamps in oil lamps that’re designed for indoors.

Another factor that determines the types of oil you’ll use for your oil lamps is the wick. Bcause different wicks select different lamp oil. 

Before you choose any oil for your lamps, you must nature of the wick. It’s the determined factor of how it burns.

Oil and wick works together. These are among the most important parts of oil lamps. How wick burns depends on the type of oil in the cylindrical container.

How ambience and illuminate oil lamps it is, depends on the wick and the nature of the oil. That’s why it importsant you use the exact oil when setting it up.

However, oil lamps comes in different size and shape. The size and shape are very important, because it what determine the degree of warm it will produce.

It has different satnding positions; free standing position, hook hanging position,and wall-mount position. 

Here are some of the common and best oil for lamps are easily be found in the stores and online are:

  • Olive oils
  • Nut oils
  • Seed oils
  • Hemp oils
  • Vegetable oils
  • Fish oil
  • Mustard oil
  • Castor oil

Not all wick burn faster and smoothly with all the oil listed above. Therefore you need to carry out research to know the types of oil that will burn well with your wick

Part of the research is to test the wick with different kinds of oils to know which one will allow oxygen that’ll make it burn faster and steadily to produce the required warmth.

When Should I Refill my Oil lamp?

The right time for you to refill your oil lamps is when its not be in use. At this point, it may not be hot.

Don’t refill the oil when the lamp is on and hurt. Hence you will risk getting your hands burnt.

Why you should not refill your oil lamps when it’s on, is that the burners, chimeneys and glass globes might be very hot during that point. 

So, you need to wait for the oil lamps to cool before you disassemble the parts and refuel it.

For example, refilling the hanging or wall-mounting oil lamp, you need to open the cylindrical container first, and pour oil into it. 

To avoid oil spillage on the floor, place the front on a level surface to pour the oil slowly.

After you’re done with the fill, then rub oil on the wick. When you rub oil on the wick, it will ignite and burn easily and faster. 

The oil lamp will burn faster when the wick is well soaked. You can allow it for one or two minutes aftrer refilling the cylindrical containers — for the oil to go around the wick.

What Level Should The Fuel Be?

When refilling an oil lamp, be careful not to over fill it — because over-filling will make the oil spill on the floor and on the body, which is not safe and healthy for users.

Over refilling can ignite unnecessary fire, which may lead to uncontrollable fire outbreak. Even though you want the oil to saturate the wick, care has to be taken as well, not to pour it on the floor.

The size of your oil lamp determines the filling level you might adopt. If the oil lamp is big, you might likely want to fuel the front in approximately ¾ full to avoid unwanted spillage that’ll cause fire.

Another precaution you need to take is to let the wick and burner be at the same level. When you maintain the same level of fuel with a burner and wick to avoid fire.

when you have successfully done all these, then go ahead to ignite/light-up the wick. Lower the wick slightly to maintain an even, level flame. 

The recommended flame you should maintain for your indoor oil lamp is ⅜ inches that is little bit above the burner.  

Appropriate level of fueling and maintaining the same level of wick and burner will enable you to avoid fire out break. 

How To Ignite Oil Lamps?

It’s easy to ignite an oil lamp when you have successfully fueled it with the right oil. Also maintaining an appropriate oil level. 

Close the front cylindrical container very well to avoid spill-over oil on the body during fueling. 

Ensure you set the wick at the same level with the burner before you ignite with fire flame. 

Ignite an oil lamp with a fire flame to keep it burning to produce the exact warmth you need indoors. 

Once you ignite the oil lamp, watch out for the fire flame, if it’s to reduce it or not. If the fire flame is more than ⅜ inches, you need to reduce it. This will make the oil lamp produce conducive and healthy flame.

If the fire flame is too high, it will cause unnecessary smoke that’s not healthy to inhale. Therefore lower the wick once your notice the flame is too high that’ll generate smoke.

Is It Difficult To Fix Oil Lamp Glass Burner Globe? 

First, you need to check if the glass globe is the same size with the stand.

Take the glass burner globe to scroll it on the stand. Do it gently, for the glass burner globe not to crack or brake. 

The glass burner globe is tight when it stops scrolling up. This means it has held it firmly when it stops scrolling — especially if the glass burner globe is the same thing as the stand. 

How To Maintain Oil Lamp

To maintain an oil lamp involves total cleaning. Starting from the burner, glass burner globe, and the stand.

Often cleaning an oil lamp makes it last longer. Before you proceed to clean the oil lamp, ensure it’s not hot.

When it is hot, allow it to cool down before you disassemble it. If not you’ll get your hands hot.

Once the oil lamp is cooled, you can disassemble the oil lamp into different parts to properly clean it.

After that, get a clean rag and deep it into clean water to wipe off the glass globe, to remove any dirt on the glass globe.

Then, get the burner and clean every dirt or stain that might prevent the flow movement of the oil.

Take the burner and remove any smoke that it might have gathered around the mouth. Check the wick to ensure it’s properly set. Use a wet rag to remove any smoke or dirt.

Oil Lamp Safety Guidelines 

Never you ignite an oil lamp without attending to it. Turn it off when you’re done using it and when leaving the house. This will prevent it from accidental fall that might lead to fire outbreak.

It’s advisable not to store oil lamps with oil on the cylindrical container, to make it last long and to prevent it from catching fire.

Keep the oil lamp out of reach children, especially when it is on. Hence they might bump into it and get hot.

It’s better to use and refill your oil lamp with white oil than coloured oil or fragrant oil. The white oil will get the lamp dirty on time neither is it hazardous to human health — the coloured oil spoils wick easily compared to the white oil.

Ensure you moisted the wick with oil before you ignite for easily burning. One of the best wicks in the market is the one made with cotton. The cotton wick absorbs oil faster than other makes.


Having answered some of your questions concerning oil lamps, then using oil lamps will no longer be a challenge.

You can go ahead to use an oil lamp indoor with the right burning oil. Follow the precautionary safety rules stated to keep your oil lamp last longer.

This alternative to electricity is used to make the indoors warm, therefore the current oil lamps are quite different from the traditional oil lamps.