How to Melt Old Candles to Make New Candles

eHow may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story.

If you have old loose candles that you're not sure what to do with, recycle them by melting the wax into new glass containers. Use anything from small votive holders to mason jars. This easy DIY is a thrifty way to add some new life to your house decor.

Recycle your old candles into new candles.
Image Credit: Angie Diersman

Things You'll Need

  • Medium cooking pot

  • Large tin can

  • Loose candles

  • Pre-tabbed candle wicks

  • Glass containers

  • Locking pliers or oven mitt

  • Wood skewers

Supplies for candle making.
Image Credit: Angie Diersman

Step 1: Melt the Old Candle in a Tin Can

Add 2 inches of water into a medium sized cooking pot and bring to a boil. Place an old candle into the tin can and center it in the boiling pot. Lower the heat to medium and let the wax slowly melt to liquid.


You can use any kind of double boiler, but if you’re just starting out, a tin can is an inexpensive set-up.

Melt wax in a double boiler.
Image Credit: Angie Diersman


Never leave melting wax unattended. Monitor at all times.

Step 2: Attach the Wick

Cover your work surface with tin foil or newspaper in case of drips or spills. Add a small amount of wax to the bottom of the glass container and stick the wick upright. You can add the wax with an old spoon or by pouring a small amount from the tin can.

Attach the wick to the bottom of the container.
Image Credit: Angie Diersman


Use a pair of locking pliers to get a good grip on the tin can, making it easy to pour the wax.

Step 3: Pour Melted Wax into the Glass Container

Prop up the wick using wood skewers. You can also use a clothespin or anything you have around the house that will support the wick. Slowly pour the melted wax from the can into the glass container until it's almost full. Leave a small amount of wax to top off the candle once set.

Support the wick and pour wax into glass container.
Image Credit: Angie Diersman

Step 4: Allow Wax to Set

Add additional wick supports if needed and allow the wax to set for 6-8 hours. Different types of wax set-up differently. If you notice a dip near the wick, heat up the remaining wax and top it off.

Allow wax to set for 6-8 hours.
Image Credit: Angie Diersman

Step 5: Trim Wick

Trim the wick to 1/4 - inch and light your candle in a safe area.


If you are working with different wax colors, rinse the can with boiling water between uses. This will prevent the colors from mixing.