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Are you in a cold emergency and wondering if a flower pot and tealight candle can save you?
You might have heard of the flower pot heater hack that has been circulating on social media.
But does it really work?
In this blog post, we will explore the science behind this hack and whether it can actually provide enough heat to save you in a cold emergency.
The Science Behind The Flower Pot Heater Hack
The basic idea behind the flower pot heater hack is to use a couple of bricks to elevate a terracotta pot, place a few tealight candles under the pot, and light the candles.
The theory is that the terracotta pot(s) and the optional bolt somehow amplify the heat from the tealight candles.
However, this theory is literally impossible, as it violates the first two rules of thermodynamics.
Things don’t just magically get hotter.A burning candle converts the chemical energy in the wax to heat energy.
One tea candle will produce around 30 watts of heat.
The way you burn the candle does not change the amount of heat produced, provided it is fully burned.
A candle outside a clay pot or inside a clay pot still produces 30 watts of heat.
The clay pot is the same before you light the candle and after the heater cools down.
Since it does not change, the first law of thermodynamics says it can’t produce heat.
To test the flower pot heater hack, we built a couple of different versions ourselves and measured the results.
We used a terracotta pot, four tealight candles, and a couple of bricks to elevate the pot.
We lit the candles and placed them under the pot.
After 10 minutes, we measured the pot at just under 270°F (132°C).
We also tried the same experiment with a single candle, and the pot got up to 127°F (53°C).While we did get a surprising amount of heat from this setup, it doesn’t work the way some think it does.
The same amount of heat is coming out of the candles whether there’s a pot above them or not, so it’s not that you’re ‘making the candle hotter.’It would take nearly 60 candles to effectively heat a 100-square-foot room, which is not practical or safe.
Candles can help provide heat transfer, but they aren’t very efficient.
The flower pot heater does not increase the amount of heat, just its usefulness.
While the flower pot heater hack can provide some heat, it is not a reliable or safe way to heat a room in a cold emergency.
It would take a large number of candles to effectively heat a room, which is not practical or safe.
Instead, it is recommended to have a reliable source of heat, such as a portable heater or a generator, in case of a cold emergency.