Best Emergency Candles: Stay Lit and Stay Alive

Best Emergency Candles Stay Lit and Stay Alive

What’s the most simple way of beating the darkness during an emergency blackout?

I am talking about the reliable, old-school way of lighting a candle.

Imagine an unprecedented event like an EMP attack resulting in a no-end-in-sight blackout. To pass the long dark nights, you need a passive power source like emergency survival candles.

This is the review of the 8 best emergency candles on the market. To top it off, we will also add a buyer’s guide to help you make the best choice.

Our Choices for the Best Emergency Candles

Overall Score 90%
Reliability 90%
Value 95%

Pros:

Cons:

What We Like

Bolsius is a brand that has been making premium-quality candles since 1870. So, you can depend on their products without a second thought.

These unscented white candles come in a pack of 45. That makes them one of the cheapest options in the market.

The first thing you notice is the long profile and an even thickness. That allows the candles to generate a smooth flame and burn for longer hours.

Note, each candle is 6.5 inches long and the burning time is 7 hours. So two of these packs can easily last through a long period of emergency.

These candles are also smoke-free and don’t drip. That makes them safe for use in small and enclosed spaces in a bug out location

The high-quality paraffin wax and a pure cotton wick also ensure a clean and bright flame. This also ensures that you can store them for long periods without any chance of degradation.

What Needs Improvement

Honestly, there isn’t much to dislike here. Still, the burning time could have been more. 

They don’t come with a stand either. So make sure that you use a stand to keep them standing safely.

Bottom Line

These candles come with a traditional look. So besides handling emergencies, they work great as Christmas or dinner candles.

Overall, these simple but effective survival candles offer the perfect balance between price and performance.

Overall Score 90%
Reliability 100%
Value 80%

Pros:

Cons:

What We Like

Stonebriar specializes in stylish home decor pieces. But make no mistake about it. Their candles are a great choice for tackling those dark nights.

Now, one of the best things about these candles is the good burning time. The 3×4 pillar candles burn for 35 hours. 

Other than that there are the 3×6 and 3×8 sizes. They burn for 65 and 80 hours respectively. You get two choices of colors- white and ivory.

The use of high-quality paraffin and lead-free cotton wick ensures a clean and smoke-free flame. So you won’t be breathing smoke in a confined space. They are unscented as well.

One more thing…

These long burning emergency candles also come in a sturdy cardboard box. So storing them isn’t an issue.

What Needs Improvement

In our tests, they burnt slightly less than the specified 35 hours, especially when the ambient temperature is high. Stonebriar could have done a better job here.

Also, they need to be used with a candle holder or a tray to prevent wax spillage.

Bottom Line

Considering the price, we feel that a set of these candles offer the right bang for your buck. If you’re looking for emergency backup lights, this is a great option.

Overall Score 80%
Reliability 80%
Value 80%

Pros:

Cons:

What We Like

Established in 1971, UCO specializes in preparing candles and candle lanterns for outdoor and emergency use.

These candles are made from natural beeswax and provide a burning time between 12 to 15 hours. 

The high-quality cotton wick ensures a smooth flame and clean burning. At the same time, the non-paraffin-based composition makes it friendly for the environment. 

That’s not all…

The 100% natural beeswax is obtained from Texas beekeepers who have a family legacy of beekeeping. The bees are kept free from chemicals in spotless facilities. This ensures the high quality of the wax.

The high-melt temperature of the wax also minimizes dripping and generates less smoke. Compared to ordinary candles, the overall soot build-up from these is much less. 

Moreover, there’s the pleasant aroma of beeswax that we liked.

We also noted these candles generate a decent amount of heat. Great for tackling cold nights.

What Needs Improvement

The thing is, these are best used with the UCO candle lanterns. That needs some extra investment.

Otherwise, you’ll need a stand to use them safely. The 1.25-inch diameter isn’t good enough to keep them free-standing.

Next, we felt that they burned longer when the temperatures were on the lower side.

Bottom Line

As long burning emergency candles, these are a dependable choice. They are great for use in small spaces and the 3-pack set is easy to store.

Overall Score 80%
Reliability 90%
Value 70%

Pros:

Cons:

What We Like

For more than five decades, Coghlan’s has delivered top-class products for outdoor lovers. This survivor candle offers no less in terms of quality and performance.

What stands out is the innovative design. The candle comes with 3 wicks. Lighting up one will provide 36 hours of burning time.

Need more light? 

Then you can light up all the three wicks. However, the burning time will come down to 12 hours.

The other thing is, the candles are set in a durable tin container. So you won’t need a separate stand. So you can use them anywhere you want- even inside your bug-out vehicle.

The compact size also makes it easy to store. A convenient lid and a box of matches are included. 

Overall, we liked the attention paid to the details.

What Needs Improvement

In real-life use, the single wick burns for slightly more than 30 hours. We expected 36 hours from it.

Other than that, some users also faced issues with the lid of the container.

Bottom Line

The light delivered from three wicks is sufficient for beating the darkness in an emergency hideout. Moreover, the flexibility of the candle makes it stand out from the competition.

Considering the price, this long-burning emergency candle is a great choice for survivalists and general outdoor lovers as well.

Overall Score 85%
Reliability 95%
Value 80%

Pros:

Cons:

What We Like

Now, these candles are handcrafted in Europe by expert candle makers who have perfected the art for generations.

The result?

They burn slowly and produce a consistent flame with a warm glow. The flame doesn’t generate any smoke either.

Keep in mind that these emergency candles use a vegetable oil wax that delivers an exceptionally long burning time. Each candle can burn for 9 days or 216 hours! 

Also, the self-standing design is pretty effective for emergency use. The plastic holder also keeps the flame protected from winds. Moreover, there isn’t any chance of wax dripping off.

You can buy a single candle, or packs of 3,6, or 10 depending on your needs. 

What Needs Improvement

The plastic holder takes some brightness away from the flame. Still, they are good for a survival situation where you don’t want to attract attention by a bright light.

Remember, these aren’t compact survival candles. A pack of 10 will need quite a bit of storage space.

Lastly, they come with a higher price tag than the others in this list. So if you’re on a budget, look elsewhere.

Bottom Line

Honestly, this isn’t a traditional survivor candle. But they offer solid performance without compromising quality.

If you want a long burning candle, go for it.

Three Additional Emergency Candles

What We Like

This product from Candlelife is one of the best survival candles in terms of safety. High-quality liquid paraffin is packed inside a container, resulting in a safe candle that burns for a long time.

How long?

Each candle will burn for around 115 hours. You can buy 3, 4, or 6 packs that will see you through the longest of emergencies.

Besides, the design ensures that there isn’t an issue with storing half-burnt candles. Nor do you need a stand or a tray to use them safely.

The flame is smoke-free and odorless. There isn’t any soot formation either. You can also increase the brightness by pulling out the wick as needed.

Goo news: the product comes with a 30-day return period. If you aren’t satisfied, you get your money back.

The plastic container is well built and is light enough to pack along with your emergency gear. 

What Needs Improvement

Some users prefer a glass container with candles. Honesty, we liked the portability of the plastic can and the fact that it won’t shatter if dropped.

That said, oil-based liquid wax candles can leak when overturned. So make sure to store them properly.

Bottom Line

If you don’t mind the non-traditional design, these are one of the best emergency candles in the market.

What We Like

These emergency candles from SE have a special feature. It uses a combination of soy wax and palm wax. 

Is it much different than paraffin wax?

Yes, it is. Soy wax is made from soybeans and hence it’s biodegradable. It produces less soot, fewer toxins, and burns longer. 

Moreover, a lower melting point makes this candle easy to use during cold winters.

Now, this candle comes with three wicks. Each wick provides a burning time of 12 hours. You can burn all three to get maximum light and heat. The candle is enclosed in a waterproof aluminum can. So storing and using is super easy. There isn’t any spillage either. The flame is odorless and burns consistently. Another advantage of soy and palm wax.

What Needs Improvement

On the downside, soy wax tends to get softer when stored in very hot temperatures for long. So keep them out of hot zones.

In our tests, the candle burned for around 30 hours. That was less than what we expected.

The weight of a unit is 3.6 oz. So it isn’t the best option for ultra-light survival packing.

Bottom Line

With the flexibility of 3 wicks and a long burning time, these are some of the best survival candles you can pick. Considering the price, they are also great for those on a budget.

What We Like

This candle lantern from UCO stands out by combining a warm glow with the safety of a collapsible lantern.

The aluminum frame keeps it compact and the spring-loaded tube keeps the flame at an optimum height. Not to forget, UCO supplies 3 pieces of candles with the lantern. Each has 9 hours of burn time. With a weight of 6.4 ounces with the candle, the unit is lightweight. A fleece bag is also supplied for storage.

Also, we found the unit sturdy enough to withstand rough handling.

Most importantly, unlike other long burning emergency candles, you can use this inside a tent. The protective glass chimney reduces any chances of fire hazards. 

We wouldn’t place it near the tent wall though.

The candle burns with a lovely warm glow and emits no smoke. The chimney also creates a windproof environment for the flame.

So you can easily head out in the darkness with this lantern. There’s a carrying handle too.

A hanging hook allows you to hang it from any object. A twist-lock at the base ensures proper storage.

What Needs Improvement

This isn’t a candle that will burn for extra-long hours. If you want 120 hour emergency candles there are better options.

Besides, the top part of the lantern does get hot after a few hours of use. So handle it with care.

Bottom Line

Frankly, if you’re looking for a simple candle, there are other choices that are more affordable.

Still, the unique windproof design of this lantern adds to the overall convenience and safety. A great choice to improve the versatility of a simple candle, especially for camping trips and other outdoor activities.

Points to Consider while Choosing Emergency Candles

emergency candle in the dark

There are a few aspects that you need to keep in mind while picking survival candles for your emergency kit. If you don’t have an emergency generator or other way to generate power, a survival candle will be your last hope. 

The Type of Wax

The wax is the main fuel of a candle. There are quite a few wax types and each one has a different set of pros and cons.

Solid paraffin: This is the most common choice for survivor candles. Paraffin is derived from petroleum and it does give out fumes depending on the oil content. Also, it doesn’t last as long as the other wax types.

Liquid paraffin: It has more purity and better stability and doesn’t emit fumes. It also lasts longer and burns better than solid paraffin.

Soy paraffin: Soy wax burns longer than paraffin and are more environmentally friendly. They are usually mixed with other waxes while making candles. However, soy is softer and melts easily.

Beeswax: This is another completely natural option that produces a clean flame and minimum soot. It’s also more expensive than the other types.

Type of Wick

The burning time and flame quality of the candle also depend on the type of candle wick. The wicks are usually made from cotton and can be a flat braid or square braid type. 

In reality, makers don’t specify the type of wick used for the candle. So this isn’t a factor that you can control while buying the best survival candles. However, survival candles with multiple wicks are a better choice to prevent wastage of wax.

Burn Time

This is one specification that you must check before buying an emergency candle. It will also help you determine the number of candles you need to buy for prepping. 

The burn time will also help you to determine the storage space that you may need in your emergency shelter. 

The factors that affect burn time include ambient temperature, air movement, and candle size.

For overnight use, you need a candle that will last for at least 12 hours. However, for handling disasters, picking 120-hour plus emergency candles is a good choice.

Frankly, any candle that burns less than 6 hours, isn’t worth buying for emergency situations.

Safety Factors

First off, emergency candles should not have any unpleasant odor. This can give some people a headache. But more importantly, this means that the candle emissions contain harmful chemicals. Inhaling them for long hours isn’t safe.

Also, dripless candles are the best choice since they don’t spill melted wax. 

Note: Candles made from cheap quality paraffin wax can give out toxic chemicals like acetone, toluene, and benzene. So it’s best not to include such candles in your survival kit.

When the candle doesn’t burn efficiently, soot is produced. Make sure to choose an emergency candle that generates a clean flame. 

Stability

No matter where you’re using a candle, you need to make sure that you keep it stable. An overturned candle can not only spill hot wax but can also lead to a fire.

The best emergency candles come with a wide base that allows them to stand on their own. In case you’re using a thin candle, use a candle holder. Keep them away from flammable substances and don’t leave them unattended.

The Advantage of Emergency Candles

Power outage candles aren’t as powerful as liquid fuels or wood when it comes to delivering heat and light. When it comes to emergency preparedness, having ample light during a SHTF scenario could mean life or death. 

The average light intensity of a candle can be between 10 to 15 Lumen. On the other hand, an LED bulb can deliver more than 100 Lumens per watt. However, you can use a mirror or a reflective surface to get more out of a plain candle.

Even so, candles can last forever when stored safely, are easy to use, and generate less toxic chemicals while burning. What’s more, they are one of the cheapest options in the market for emergency lighting.

The truth is, during an SHTF survival scenario, every drop of fuel can be precious for preppers. In such situations, candles can be a reliable source of light and heat to help keep you safe. They will not only save fuel but also help you preserve the fire tinder.

In addition to that, candles are a good source of steady heat. Lighting up a few candles can help you overcome hypothermia on a freezing night. The steady heat can also be used for warming up food. 

Overall, candles are great emergency essentials that offer good burn time and excellent value.

A word of caution: make sure that you light the candle in a well-ventilated space. Keep them away from pets, children, and anything that might burn. Lastly, extinguish the candle before leaving the room or going to bed.

FAQs

Which Candle Wax Burns The Longest?

  • Soy wax burns for the longest duration.

What kind of candle gives off the most light?

  • In reality, the light delivered by a candle depends on many factors. You can use a candle with multiple wicks to control the light intensity.

What’s the difference between emergency candles and regular candles?

  • The best emergency candles are designed to burn for longer hours than the irregular ones. They also produce less smoke and soot.

Is it bad to light candles in your room?

  • When burned in a ventilated room, unscented candles made from natural wax don’t have any harmful effects on human health.


Final Thoughts

So it all adds up to this. Candles are a great emergency light source. Your emergency survival plan should also include tools like survival shovels and survival sawsFor preppers, packing a few emergency candles in the bug out bag is never a bad idea.

Now that you know all about the best survival candles out there, go ahead and pick one.

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