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Oozing Goo Lava Line    Main Conferences    General Goo  ›  RESCUED: How long can you run a lava lamp? Moderators: Dr.WHAT, MattMJB0188
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RESCUED: How long can you run a lava lamp?  This thread currently has 56,518 views. Print
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December 19, 2006, 8:51am Report to Moderator

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NOTE:  The following thread has been rescued from the old version of the Oozing Goo Lava Line that crashed and burned in December of '06.

Mr. Ben Aug-12-03, 03:48 AM (PST)
"How long can you run a lava lamp?"

    I was just wondering if a lava lamp can be damaged by running for too long. I've had mine running for about a week now, and it seems to be fine, but I would really hate to damage it in such a stupid way as just running it for too long. Thanks, TTFN

Table of contents

RE: How long can you run a lava lam..., Pepper, Aug-12-03, (1)
RE: How long can you run a lava lam..., Mr. Ben, Aug-13-03, (2)
RE: How long can you run a lava lam..., Masa Rov, Aug-26-03, (3)
RE: How long can you run a lava lam..., someone, Jan-09-06, (4)
RE: How long can you run a lava lam..., creambuns, Jan-10-06, (5)

Pepper Aug-12-03, 05:42 PM (PST)
1. "RE: How long can you run a lava lamp?"

    According to the directions you're not supposed to run a Lava lamp for more than 10 hours at a time.

Mr. Ben Aug-13-03, 10:39 AM (PST)
2. "RE: How long can you run a lava lamp?"

    Thanks! It seems ok still, but I will be turning it off now

Masa Rov Aug-26-03, 05:07 PM (PST)
3. "RE: How long can you run a lava lamp?"

    Will it get damaged if it is left on all the time? The instructions in the lava lamp I purchased ("Groove Tube") do not make any mention of it. All they say is that lava lamps need "breaking in" and that best function is attained after a week to ten days.

someone Jan-09-06, 05:12 PM (PST)
4. "RE: How long can you run a lava lamp?"

    >Will it get damaged if it
    >is left on all the
    >time? The instructions in the
    >lava lamp I purchased ("Groove
    >Tube") do not make any
    >mention of it. All they
    >say is that lava lamps
    >need "breaking in" and that
    >best function is attained after
    >a week to ten days.
    DUHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Of course it will trust me mine did

creambuns Jan-10-06, 11:56 AM (PST)
5. "RE: How long can you run a lava lamp?"

    Some directions just aren't clear enough, especially if you've never owned a lava before.

    Usually lava's take a few cycles to break them in but over a few days, not all at once.

    After that all should be sweet. I agree with the not running it for more than 10 hours per day....we all need a rest, even lava lamps.

    Some heat up quicker than others. I only run mine for about 5 hrs a day otherwise the lava starts to break up into tiny blobs and it spoils the overall effect (plus it means that your poor lamp is starting to overheat)

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December 23, 2006, 9:25pm Report to Moderator
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I leave mine on all day some times, I forget there on and come in my room and the lava is all sunk to the bottom.  I need timers!!!!!
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December 23, 2006, 9:44pm Report to Moderator

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     I got tired of my lamps overheating. It is a terrible feeling seeing your globe in one big hot blob after only a little time flowing. I call this condition "down for the count".

     I bought a bunch of 30 watt bulbs. (A15 appliance bulbs from That way my globes aren't overheating. If a globe overheats after five or six hours, then I'll try a 30 watt bulb in it. It will take longer to warm up, but it will keep running without overheating. I've done this mainly with 32 oz globes, but I did downgrade the bulb with two 52 oz. Now they flow much better. Each globe is different and 40 watts is too hot sometimes, especially for a 32 oz. Lava World uses that bulb as standard probably because it is easy for consumers to buy. It is the bulb they use both on the 52 oz and the 32 oz even though the former is more than fifty percent bigger than the latter. Not very precise if you ask me.


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January 25, 2007, 12:56am Report to Moderator
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With standard bulbs, many Lava Lamps will heat up after several hours so that most of the goo is at the top of the globe, and stays there. How long it takes to achieve this temperature depends on the volume of the globe, and the wattage of the bulb. I believe that the factory recommends no more than 10 hours continuous use without a cooling period.
On the other hand, I have two 32 oz Starships which have run continuously for several years on dimmers turned down to just maintain lava action. In my opinion, most 32 oz models with 40 watt bulbs will need a dimmer, 52 oz Aristocrats are acceptable, but would probably work better with either dimmers or perhaps a 25 watt bulb instead of the standard 40 watt.
I recently received a black/clear 32 oz globe direct from Lava World, it ran very well with no dimmer for about a week, then the black color bled out into the clear liquid, rendering the entire globe opaque. While I have heard that this is a fairly common problem with black/clear, I wonder if it would have lasted longer if it had been running on a dimmer?
So, to answer your question, a lava lamp can run a variable length of time, depending on how much heat is being delivered by the bulb. If the bulb is turned down so that it cannot overheat, then very long service is possible.
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