Heat Your Room with 1 Candle plus Flowerpots, Nuts and Washers

Tactical Intelligence
Wednesday, 20th November 2013

If you want to heat a room with just one candle and save even more money you need to create thermal mass and then radiate it with terracotta pots. It more simple than you could ever imagine.

After a crazy week when half a million people visited our site to check out the video, 'How to Heat Your Room for 8 Pence a Day', we thought you would appreciate a refinement of this idea that generates even more heat from a candle by increasing the thermal mass within the first pot. Please share this page too so that those who saw the first post can also test out this new design.

Putting it all Together

The process for putting together the candle heater is very simple:

What You Need

Some stainless steel nuts, washers and a bolt plus three flowerpots! Do not use zinc as it gives off toxic fumes when heated. Here's the detail.

  • One 4? terracotta (not glazed) pot

  • One 2? terracotta (not glazed) pot

  • One 1 1/2? terracotta (not glazed) pot

  • Two 1 1/2? x 1/4? washers

  • Three 1 1/4? x 1/4? washers

  • Three 1? x 1/4? washers

  • Eight 3/4? x 1/4? washers

  • Seven 1/4? nuts

  • One 3? x 1/4? bolt

Assembly Instructions

I think that the easiest way for you to learn how to put one of these heaters together is to follow the cutout image (to the left) I used from the heatstick.com site:

Making the stand

I found the simplest stand to make is to purchase three 4? corner braces.

















Then just put the three braces together with the middle brace facing the opposite direction and bend the outside two just enough to support the heater.

How it Works 

The basic purpose of this heater is to capture the heat given from a candle flame and to concentrate it into a steel and ceramic radiator assembly. After some time, the ceramic surface will act as a thermal mass and begin to radiate the captured thermal energy into your room or office. Here's how heatstick.com describes it (image and description c/o heatstick.com):

Heat rising from a burning candle (or electric lamp) is first trapped in the Steel Inner Core and surrounding Ceramic (Terracotta) Inner Module.

The Inner Cores get very hot and radiate heat to the Ceramic Middle Core.

This entire inner region gets VERY VERY HOT! Heat synergistically builds up and 'boils out' of the Terracotta Inner Core into the Ceramic Middle Core. The Middle Core heats up and begins to Radiate Heat. Heated air 'boils out' into the Terracotta Outer Core.

The Large Surface Area of the Outer Core begins receiving Heat. The inner wall surfaces become very HOT! Heat travels through the wall to the Outer Surface.

The Outer Surface gets VERY WARM to HOT and gently begins to Radiate Heat into your home or office. 

Cross-posted from: www.tacticalintelligence.net/blog/how-to-make-a-candle-heater.htm


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kttecatt |
Fri, 31/01/2014 - 03:58

We built this exactly as you specified, and then with some other size pots and more hardware. In all cases, while the pots did get warm, they did not radiate any heat into the room. As a matter of fact, I couldn't feel the heat on my feet, even with them up on the table, 2" from the pots. While I understand the premise of this project, it did not stand up to our at home test.

Ma8nolia |
Fri, 31/01/2014 - 18:28

Recently, thousands of motorists were stranded in their cars in Atlanta, GA and Birmingham, AL, which they then abandoned for warmth and food. Suggestions were made for storing mylar blankets etc in the trunk (bonnet, heheh) of the car. It might be nice to also be able to heat the car for a while with candles and with the window cracked, using no zinc material, as it is toxic, as is Teflon. I don't know of a safe way to put the housing into a car. Any suggestions for modification?

rebeltf |
Mon, 10/02/2014 - 10:27

I bet not one of the above naysayers have tried this before offering Bill Nuy Science Guy advice and/or admonishment.

This method indeed works and works well considering the DIY nature of the materials used , nobody said your going to heat your house or concert hall with these , they are meant for smaller room , spaces , tent , etc. It works , I've used them and made them as gifts , I'm using one this moment !

"Science" has been proven wrong many , many times , so put that in your pipe and smoke it. Maybe it'll keep you warm....

tomdunnavant |
Tue, 18/11/2014 - 13:34

I built the dang thing, and placed it over my gas heater, directly over the pilot light, the i monitored the temperature in the room, expected to get at least a couple degree bump in temperature. Not one degree, no improvement, no savings, but in the spring, i have three new flower pots.

jm beckers |
Sun, 08/02/2015 - 23:46

I saw this subject on a Dutch site, I didn't read all comments.
Combustion of wax will indeed give you an amount of heat, one can't change that. So heating a room with?
It is a matter of feeling.
A room heated with radiation heat (from a stove or some pots like this) will feel more comfortable at a lower temperature as one heated with air convection heating. The difference is 4°C.
It is also easy to imagine: you will feel the heat from these pots, standing 3 or 4 meters away from them. If you just burn the candle, you'll have to hold your hand above the flame to feel something.

emmawilson |
Wed, 11/02/2015 - 07:42

Take the chill out of the air with a outdoor heater. Premium Patio offer high intensity outdoor radiant heater suitable for tough outdoor heating applications. Ideal for creating warm and cozy atmosphere.

Henry99 |
Mon, 07/05/2018 - 14:24

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