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How to make smokeless lamp oil

Updated February 21, 2017

Catalytic fragrance lamps not only destroy odours and kill bacteria, they fill the air with pleasant scents. Manufacturers price these lamps reasonably, but the smokeless oil you need to fill them is expensive. You can make your own smokeless lamp oil with a few ingredients for much less than buying oil from the shop. Choose your favourite essential oil fragrance and you are ready to combine the ingredients. Light the lamp, sit back and enjoy the aroma.

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  1. Open a 450 g (16 fl oz) bottle of isopropyl alcohol. To the alcohol, add 7 g (1/4 fl oz) of distilled water and shake to distribute the water.

  2. Add the essential oil. Add 10 ml (2 tsp) of pure essential oil To the isopropyl alcohol and distilled water. You may want to start with less and try it out. Some essential oils have a more powerful scent, so adjust to your preference.

  3. Screw the lid on the isopropyl bottle and shake the solution. Label the jar with a permanent marker, so it's not mistaken for clear alcohol.

  4. Fill the lamp half full. While some manufacturers suggest filling the lamp two-thirds full, too much oil will cause problems keeping the lamp lit.

  5. Run the lamp for at least 30 minutes to spread the scent through your room before shutting it off.

  6. Tip

    Look for 100 per cent, uncut essential oil. Some oils are watered down and will smoke.

    Buy your essential oils at craft shops or online.


    Do not use isopropyl alcohol that is a 70 per cent solution -- it has too much water in it.

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Things You'll Need

  • Isopropyl alcohol (91 to 99 per cent)
  • Distilled water
  • Essential oil
  • Catalytic fragrance lamp

About the Author

Pauline Gill

Pauline Gill is a retired teacher with more than 25 years of experience teaching English to high school students. She holds a bachelor's degree in language arts and a Master of Education degree. Gill is also an award-winning fiction author.

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