Oil Lamps

Before electricity was invented, people used oil lamps. These lamps used a light fuel oil to illuminate areas of their home.

Oil lamps work in various ways depending on how they are manufactured, but a pressurized lamp will use a hand pump to pressurize air, forcing the fuel from the reservoir to the gas chamber. The vapor from the chamber burns causing the mantle to heat up providing light and heat.

The lamps are used today in parts of the world where electricity is too expensive or not widely distributed. People also use them in their homes to add a charming, vintage aesthetic to their décor. Read on to find out more about these lamps and what you need to know if you are thinking of adding one to your interior or exterior design.

What is the Difference Between and Oil Lamp and a Kerosene Lamp?

Kerosene lamps and oil lamps are one in the same. The difference is the type of oil you are using to light the lamp.

Lamp oil usually refers to liquid paraffin. It is in the same family as kerosene, but it’s purified so it has a cleaner burn. The fact that it’s purified means it emits fewer toxins into the air.

How Do You Use a Kerosene Lamp?

These are the steps to take in using a kerosene lamp:

  1. Twist off the chimney to access the wick and font which are located at the bottom of the lamp.
  2. Pour the lamp oil into the font until it’s 90% full. The font will have a round metal burner on top of it. Twist off the burner sleeve to remove it. Then pour the lamp oil into it.
  3. The metal burner will have a slot for the wick which can be installed by placing the burner back on the font and turning it to lock it in place. Put the wick into the slot so it hangs down into the fuel chamber.
  4. Cut the wick so it’s flush with the burner sleeve to ensure it burns evenly.
  5. Turn the dial to lower the wick until it barely sticks out of the burner sleeve.
  6. Allow the wick to soak for up to one hour so it absorbs the oil. This will ensure a better burn.
  7. Light the wick and place the chimney over it.
  8. Turn the wick down if the lamp begins to smoke.
  9. Turn the wick down completely to extinguish the flame.

Are Oil Lamps Safe for Indoor Use?

Yes, oil lamps may be used indoors and outdoors.

Which Fuel Should I Use?

It is best to use a fuel that’s eco-friendly, non-toxic, clean, odorless, and smokeless.

What are Some Tips for Safe Usage?

Stay safe when using your oil lamp by choosing a recommended fuel, refueling carefully, and keeping the lamp away from small children and pets when lit.

An oil lamp has a terrific vintage look and adds atmosphere to indoor and outdoor spaces. Now that you know how to use one, you can safely enjoy it in your home. Will you be adding an oil lamp to your décor?
If you have questions please give us a call at (773) 866-0220 or visit our website for consultation.