Antique Oil Lamps

Friday, October 28th, 2011 | Author:
Posted in Antique Oil Lamps | May 12th, 2011

Tips on how to sell antique oil lamps

No matter how you put it, antiques are always eye-candy and subject for collection. These antiques can be in form of pieces of furniture, picture frames, wood decors or oil lamps. Among all these mentioned antique oil lamps are convenient to collect and serve not only the lighting purpose but aesthetics as well.

Antique items are sold in the usual antique stores and sometimes shop fairs. Selling these items is easy but it is important to know some reminders in order to know how you fair in the antique selling industry.

1.When you plan to sell your antique oil lamps, or any antique items for that matter, you need to know the ins and outs on how to sell antique pieces. Selling these things are not the same as selling ordinary goods. When doing this, you can research in the internet or read books to gather information in antique selling.

About the author: lamps are a great investment for your home.


Frequently Asked Questions

    What is the proper way to clean and light antique oil lamps?
    And the proper care of these lamps?

    • ANSWER:
      A piece of sponge fastened on the end of a stick or wire is the best thing with which to clean lamp chimneys. Old newspaper will make lamp chimneys sparkling clean. Simply turn the chimney while stuffing in the paper. You will be amazed at the results. Lamp chimneys are made less liable to break by putting in cold water, bringing slowly to boiling point, boiling for an hour, and allowing to cool before removing from the water. If a small hole is broken in a glass chimney, paste on a piece of paper and it will answer its purpose until you get a new chimney. If you use oil, buy the best kerosene. Test it “outside” by placing a very small quantity in a teacup, and if it does not easily ignite when brought in contact with a lighted taper or match, it is good; poor oil will ignite instantly. Keep lamp oil in a cool dark place; keep all the articles used for cleaning, filling, and trimming lamps by themselves. For these purposes provide an old waiter (to hold the things), a lamp filler, pair of scissors or a lamp trimmer, box of wicks, soap, washing soda, and several soft cloths and towels, also a wire hairpin with which to keep open the vent in the burner. When lamps need an extra cleaning, add one tablespoon soda to a quart of water, being careful that none of the bronze or gilding comes in contact with the soda. When the wick becomes too short to carry up the kerosene, and if you have not time to put in a new wick, a small piece of cotton rag pinned on below will prove a good feeder. When the burners of the lamp become gummy and prevent the wicks moving freely, boil them up in suds over the fire a short time, and they will become entirely clean and work well. Lamps may become incrusted inside with settlings from the oil, and ordinary washing will not remove it. Take soapsuds and fill the lamp about one-third full, then put in a little sharp sand, and shake vigorously. A few minutes will remove every particle of settlings.
      Important: Always fill the lamps every day and in the daytime; never fill a lamp after dark near a lighted lamp; never light an almost empty lamp, as the empty space is nearly always filled with a very explosive gas. Never fill an oil lamp when lighted. If the lamp wick is dry after filling, allow it to become saturated with oil before lighting. Adjust the wick making sure it is level and trim with scissors if necessary. The wick may have to be adjusted to avoid smoking after lighting. In putting out a lamp, turn the flame down low, and wave a fan, book, or paper across the top of the chimney. Blowing down the chimney is very dangerous when a lamp is nearly empty and turned up high. To prevent lamp wicks from smoking, soak them in vinegar and then dry them thoroughly. Never start a fire in a stove or fireplace with the kerosene lamp oil.

      Always be very careful around antique oil lamps, especially when children and young people are present; unlike the youth of Grandma’s day, they are not as aware of the dangers. Lamp oil is quite flammable and should always be used with caution. A dropped oil lamp could explode and destroy a house with fire. Here are a couple of lamp safety tips I learned from my old Dad:
      1. Never overfill the container with oil; fill to just over three-quarters full.
      2. And always make sure the lamp or lantern is sitting on a stable, level surface and never leave burning lamps unattended.


    I am trying to locate a person who can help me value some Antique Oil Lamps I inherited?
    I have a number of turn of the century, Victorian oil lamps. They are very beautiful and I have been told they could be worth a lot. I need a person I can send pictures to and speak with on the phone as well. Thank you everyone for your help. Randy

    • ANSWER:
      You can check with and get an appraisal from either Christies or Sotherbys which are both auction houses. They are based in New York but they have branches in other parts of the country. Sometimes they can even give you an appraisal online or, with pictures, over the telephone. Both houses have web sites that you can use to get contact information.

    Should I shine up the antique oil lamps I bought for my sister or would that ruin the “antique-ness”?
    The glass is in very good condition but the metal between the oil reservoir and the bulb is tarnished.

    • ANSWER:
      give it to your sis and let her decide, cleaning antiques could cause it to lose 50% or more of value or be worthless.

    how do i find out the value of 2 antique oil lamps that are in original, excellent condition?
    these lamps are app 40 in tall and very heavy. there are cherubs on the base and flowers on the globe. each lamp has crystals hanging from the globe. they have not been converted to electricity

    • ANSWER:
      Since they have been converted they probably have lowered the value a bit, but they should still be worth something.

      There are a few things you can do on your own to start trying to price it. First, see if there is a mark on the lamps of the person who made it. Usually on the bottom of it, sometimes around the neck of the item. If you have the maker you can sometimes find something similar.

      You can go to an apraiser and have it done prophecinaly. You should usually get a couple differant estimates, and look for someone who specializes in that sort of thing.

      You can search for similar ones online… here is a lamp that matches your discription:
      You can see how much this sold for, see if it’s the same one, or look for others till you find it.

    Were can I find a ring type wick for an antique oil lamp?
    The lamp has a wick that is circuler not round but like a ring with a diameter of about 3″.

    • ANSWER:
      Here you go, click on the link below and you can view the wicks and choose the one that suits your lamp. Hope they have the one you need.

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