In-Depth How To Guides

How to Fix a Lava Lamp After Shaking it? (Ultimate Guide)

How to fix lava lamp after shaking it
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Lava lamps have been in use since 1963. From then till now, so many forms of lava lamps have been evolved.

These lamps are much more attractive than simple light lamps. When lit somewhere, lava lamps present the most enchanting scenes.

Lava lamp holds a special kind of wax inside them. The movements of wax inside lamp jar appears as a lava.

Thus, this liquid motion is still in fame for the unique patterns it makes.  Overall it is very admirable to be used for late-night studying. But mostly it is used as a decoration piece in most houses and offices.

Lava lamps sometimes need to be fixed. Here is a complete guide of how to fix a lava lamp after shaking it. Let’s have a look.

So, here we go!

What is a Lava Lamp?

Lava Lamp

Lava lamps turn your bland room into a vibrant and energizing space!

A lava lamp is a special kind of lamp-based on fluid movements. As the lamp (jar) has translucent liquid and wax at the same time inside it, they both cannot be mixed. So actually it creates the most amazing effects.

When the liquid gets heat from the bottom, the wax is pushed upwards due to the heat and as a result, unique fluid motion is produced inside the lamp.

The wax is usually of different colors which reflect different shades of light when lit. Lamp jars are also made with different styles and designs. It is a good decorative piece for the house interior.

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Lava the Original 27-Inch Silver Base Grande Lamp with Yellow Wax in Blue Liquid

How Does a Lava Lamp Work?

Lava lamps are pretty simple. It contains only a few simple elements and is based on basic science. It must have:

  • The floating “blobs” are a compound.
  • An ingredient in which the blob floats.
  • The lighting of the display and the heat needed to move the blobs

The two compounds in a motion lamp must be invisible, or mutually insoluble, to produce floating blobs. All this means that fluid ‘A’ does not dissolve in fluid ‘B’ both do not mix, so you see two different fluids:

one floats above or inside the other.

Oil and water are the classic instances of immiscible compounds. You will get a water layer with a layer of oil floating over it if you fill a jar with conventional mineral oils and water.

This water and oil combination in a pot looks like a commercial lamp with its light turned off; two different layers can be seen in a lava lamp.

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How to Heat a Lava Lamp Quickly?

A lava lamp is made of oil and wax in a glass, and underneath the glass, there is a heat source (light bulb).  The bulb gets hot when the light is turned on.

When the bulb heats up, radiation transfers some heat from the ampoule to the glass.  Radiation occurs when the heat is transferred between two non-touching objects.

As the glass heats up, some of its heat is passed through the wax through conduction. (The bulb is not reaching the glass.)

The drive is heat transfer between two objects which touch each other.  When the wax heats, it melts and gets less dense than the oil around it.

This density change leads to an increase of the molten wax.  Some of its heat is lost when the wax rises.  It loses most of its heat and gets denser after a while at the top, so it sinks.

In the lava lamp movement of wax is like the convection currents in the mantle of the Earth and the air.  The air or liquid may become heated by a heat source and denser and rise.  As air or fluid rises, cooler air or fluid sinks above it as it is thicker and heated when it comes near the heat source.

How Long Does a Lava Lamp Last?

Although it may be tempting to make full use of your lava lamp every hour of the day and night, many of don’t know how long does the lava lamp last. Here is a brief answer to this simple question:

Depending on the bulb and the lamp brand, a lava lamp can last for eight to ten hours. For best results use the lamp for less than eight hours, which allows it to cool to room temperature before reuse.

Essential Steps to Fix Your Shaken Up Lava Lamp

As we have discussed earlier, lava lamps need to be fixed even after they are shaken up. Following are some simple but important steps that you must perform if your lava lamp is being shaken.

Repeatedly turn the lamp on and off

The first thing you would do, when your lava lamp is shaken, is to turn the lamp off. Turning on and off repeatedly will simply help the lava wax to retain its state.

Turn your lamp on and off again for some time when the liquid begins clouding and rest for about two hours. You can try to do it again and again after some time.

Use this lamp continuously for the next 9 hours

The next thing you can do when your lava lamp is switched on and off is to turn it on for 9-10 hours, so there’s a lot of heat to cure the problem. If your lava lamp is not yet fixed, take the next step

Unplug and let it cool down

If you do not yet have your lava lamp fixed after the ten-hour run, you could disconnect it and cool it for about two hours.

The lid is open, and fluid can be discharged. The wax which is cooled and turned into a solid mass, will not spill. Now you’re going to substitute the liquid for it.

Pour lukewarm water but not directly in the fragile wax. Neither shake nor mix sprinkle the water and repeat.

Fill the bottle again with distilled water and leave an air gap of 2 inches at the top. This is important because you add saline and because the wax requires more space to expand to become tighter.

After that the cap is still off, you must turn on. Run it an hour or so.

Waiting, microwave a distilled glass of water for 10 to 20 seconds to make a saline solution.

Dissolve in the glass some Epson or salt. Don’t use table salts because the water will be clouded again with ionization.

Try the Straw hack

Dip the straw about a centimeter in the lamp wax. Place your finger on the top of the stroke and transfer it carefully to the bottle of the lamp.

Don’t shake or mix the water. Wait about 10 minutes before the solution is transferred.

Do this step for every 10 minutes repeatedly until the wax can float on the lamp bottle.

Finally, to promote separation of wax from the rising orbs, you can add a small drop of liquid dish-washing soap. Then add two colors to match the color of your wax.

Screw the cap on the bottle when finished. After that, you have a new fresh, clean lava lamp ready for use.

Silicone oil is slightly fragile in lava lamps. The water can cloud permanently if the lamp is shaken or turned upside down.

You can perform the following steps to restore the clarity of the water. Remember, however, that opening the lamp cancel the warranty. Send it back for a replacement if your lamp arrives new but cloudy.

Easy Tips and Tricks to Avoid Shaking Your Lava Lamp

We have gone through a complete and ultimate guide to fixing the lava lamp when its shaken. Now let’s discover some easy tips to avoid your lava lamp being shaken. Here we go!

  • Remove your lava lamp from direct sunlight as it may cause color fading.
  • Place your lava lamp in those areas that you can read easily and should not be disturbed. If your lava lamp is somehow removed, it is less likely to be shaken.
  • Do not remove the globs or tear off the cap. You access the bulb from inside it via the bulb hatch when you want to replace it.
  • Replace the bulb only when the light is not circulating or when it is burning out. The bulb is used for most lava lamps. Make sure that the bulb you are using with your lamp is compatible.

Final Verdict

People using Lava Lamps often face such situations where they have to fix the lamp. Fixing a shaken lava lamp is also one of those situations.

But there is nothing serious to worry about. As mentioned above, there are so many simple ways by which anyone can fix the shaken lava lamp at home.

No extra repair charges, no fuel charges, just follow the steps and get your problem solved within hours.

Lava lamp users are overwhelmed not only by its light but it also creates a satisfying effect for them.

So if you have Lava Lamps at your home don’t worry about its shaken state. Just follow the steps and your lamp will be fixed!

Related Video: How to Tell If You Have a Defective Lava Lamp?