A salt lamp is a beautiful decoration for your home. When the bulb turns on inside the salt crystal, a wonderful color is created. Recently some of our salt lamp owners complained about a salt lamp leaking. I realized many of them don’t know what is happening. This is nothing to panic about.
Why is my salt lamp leaking?
The real reason for salt lamp leaking is one of the physical properties of salt. Salt can absorb moisture. Not only Himalayan salt from lamps even Table salt can show this property. One person who lives in the Snowdonia region of the United Kingdom which is a wet region all year around experimented with this.
His goal was to use salt to reduce moisture in a caravan. He took 7 plastic ice tubs and put roughly 1kg of salt in each tub. He leaves it before winter and returns in spring.
The ice cream tub looked like figure C. Solt was accumulated on walls. So we can make a presume. Salt did absorb moisture from the atmosphere and when the water content is high some of the salt becomes a liquid mixture. When winter is over and the temperature increases water vaporized. In winter salt has risen above the original depth and now we have a curved surface.
We can take a look at the science behind this and conclude. At a temperature of 200C, salt can’t absorb water vapor up to a 74% relative humidity level. At a 75% relative humidity level water content in salt (NaCl) increases rapidly.
Characteristics of salt lamp leaking
The most famous salt lamps are Himalayan salt lamps. 98% of Himalayan salt content NaCl(Sodium Chloride). The other 2% goes to minerals which gives the color or any other unique property. Based on the color we can divide salt lamps into different types.
- Grey Himalayan salt lamps.
- White salt lamps.
- Red salt lamps.
- Himalayan pink rock salt lamps.
- Orange salt rock lamps.
Since minerals are only 2% percent of the salt it doesn’t reduce the moisture absorption of salt. So if you place your salt lamp in a place that has enough relative humidity to absorb moisture you will see a salt lamp leaking.
- Water leaking from salt lamp.
- The surface of the crystal is wet.
- New crystals form around the base.
- Some areas turn into a brownish color.
Leaked salt water can be spread around the base of the lamp. When water vaporized salt will stay in that area.
How to clean salt lamp leaking
You should never wash your salt lamp. It is saltwater, not any unclean thing that comes from the lamp. Besides salt is easily dissolved in water. So, if you continuously wash your lamp, salt will decrease and the lamp will be unusable.
The easy way you can do is wipe it with a clean cloth. Microfiber cloths are a good option since they can absorb water. Perhaps you will have to use less rough sandpaper to remove the discolored area. Salt spread on the table after vaporization can also be removed by sandpaper but I recommend using a wet cloth or similar item. It is less harmful to the table and easier to clean.
How to maintain to prevent salt lamp leaking
If you can lower the condition below the requirement of water absorption you can keep it without worrying about salt lamp leaking. But it can be undesirable since relative humidity level with to the respective temperature can be way above the environment you keep the lamp. So place the lamp at a place with the lowest humidity level you can find. If you have an air condition system you may be able to control moisture in the controlled environment.
Keeping the lamp warm is another way to prevent moisture absorption and even vaporize absorbed moisture. This is possible by keeping the lamp on. If you can keep it 24/7 on then salt lamp leaking is less likely to happen. If you don’t like to do it then try to keep it on for at least 16 hours a day.
Placing the lamp on a tray is a wise idea. If salt lamp leaking happened the tray will hold the leaked saltwater so your table is protected by salt.
Myths about salt lamps
I find out a ton of myths and misconceptions backed up by junk science on the internet. So I decided to debunk some of them here.
One of the main selling points of Himalayan salt lamps is the health benefits they talked about. Many salt lamps owner bought lamps for air purifying. But unfortunately, the biggest thing it can do is reduce the moisture level by absorbing water vapor. That is the undesired we talked about.
Another myth is “Salt lamps can create negative ions”. To the people who don’t know about the negative ion case, it is believed by some people that negative ions can reduce mental problems like anxiety and make you feel better. But hundreds of research papers don’t agree with this. The number of negative ions in the atmosphere is very low to think it can do anything. Salt lamps can’t create a noticeable amount of negative ions anyway. As they say H2O molecular hits salt and receive electrons from chloride in the salt lattice and becomes a negative ion. The energy require to achieve this is way higher than the energy supplied by the lamp.
Salt lamps can make your home beautiful but it is not some sort of healing stone. If you like the appearance of salt lamps, buy one and maintain it properly to prevent salt lamp leaking. But don’t waste your money on the lies told by salesmen and society.
Salt lamps can absorb water vapor from the atmosphere and become saltwater. It is normal and you can use it after cleaning it. Keeping it on all day with proper maintenance, you can prevent salt lamp leaking.
I hope this article solves your problems. Stay with us to read more articles like this.