Q:

What dissolves candle wax?

A:

Quick Answer

While commercial solvents may not reliably dissolve candle wax, a combination of scraping and reheating can remove spills on clothes and carpets. Candle wax left in glass containers can be removed by reheating and wiping with a paper towel.

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Full Answer

Before wax can be safely removed from clothes, furniture or carpets, it must be fully hardened, as rubbing soft wax may drive it further into the fibers. If it is not yet hardened, people should carefully rub the spill with an ice cube to quickly solidify it. Once prepped, they can scrape the spot with a butter knife, spoon or credit card to remove as much wax as possible.

With the majority of the wax gone, the residue must be reheated before removal. This involves placing several layers of brown paper bags or paper towels on the front and back of the spot to absorb the wax and protect the item from direct heat. A moderate iron with light pressure, or a hot blow dryer and moderate hand pressure, should be applied to the spill site. The paper should be changed frequently to increase the amount of wax that is absorbed. When the paper is clean, the process is complete. If a stain remains on the item, the area should be pretreated and cleaned according to the label's directions.

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