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How to Make Tiki Torch Fuel [2 Easy Ways + 5 Easy Steps]

Tiki torch can create an exclusive environment on your patio. But if you don’t have the fuel, it can be a bummer. So, are you thinking of costing some bucks on fuel? No, I’ll save your bucks.

How to make tiki torch fuel?

You can either use isopropyl alcohol or vegetable oil. Mix distilled water with the alcohol and shake it up. Then use it as tiki torch fuel. If you want to use vegetable oil, pour it into a can. Make a hole in the lid and insert a wick. Light the wick up and put it in the tiki torch. 

There are multiple steps and you can use other ingredients to enhance the fuel. We have a detailed guide for you to follow and learn about them. 

Using Isopropyl Alcohol as Tiki Torch Fuel

There are standard tiki torch fuels available in the market. But if you don’t have one, you don’t need to worry. Using some simple things can light your tiki torch up. 

You can also use this method to fire a fireplace. If you do so, clean the fireplace first. Enough talking, let’s get the list of ingredients now. 

Things you’ll be needing

  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • Distilled water
  • Fragrance (optional)
  • Empty bottle to mix

Step 1: Measure the Ingredients

FIrst, measure one teaspoon of distilled water and 16 ounces of isopropyl alcohol. Isopropyl alcohol is really flammable. It is 99.99% alcohol. So using it by itself is really dangerous

Mixing it with water will make it a bit flammable. 

Step 2: Mix the Solution properly

Next, mix water with alcohol properly. The water must dilute the alcohol. You can put the mixture of water and alcohol in a bottle. Then shake it up. 

Step 3: Add Fragrance

Adding fragrance will make your experience on the patio better. Even though this is an optional step. It is not hard to do. 

Add ½ a teaspoon of essential oil. Such as citronella. You can make citronella oil at home. Add the essential oil to the shaking bottle. 

A good essential oil can be hard to find. Listed below essentially has a strong scent which will last a long time:


Not all essential oils are good to breathe in. Essential oils which are made with natural products are ok to breathe.

Step 4: Pour the Fuel Mixture

Now that the mixture of water, alcohol, and fragrance is ready. Pour it in the fuel chamber of the tiki torch. 

Use the appropriate amount for your torch. Pouring too much can cause a burst of flames.

Step 5: Light Up the Torch

Carefully light the torch up from a corner. Using long match sticks is perfect in this scenario. 

If you are using a gaslighter, please be careful. The fumes from the mixture can light up before the flame touches the torch. 

By following these few steps, you can use isopropyl alcohol to light your tiki torch. But if you have kerosene lying around, you can use that by itself. But be careful with kerosene. Don’t mix it with your cloth as getting  kerosene out of cloth is a big hassle.

Using Vegetable Oil as Tiki Torch Fuel

Isopropyl alcohol doesn’t usually lay around our houses. But vegetable oil does. You can use vegetable oils to light up your tiki torch. 

Using vegetable oil is also better than using store-bought tiki torch fuel. The store-bought one has additives that are harmful to your health. 

Things you’ll be needing

  • Canola or olive oil
  • An empty can and a led with a hole
  • Essential oils for fragrance (optional)
  • cedar/ lemongrass/ citronella/ eucalyptus/ chamomile/ rosemary to repellent bugs
  • Wick 

Step 1: Prepare the Can

The vegetable oil needs to sit in a jar. If you pour it in the torch, it won’t light up. Vegetable oil itself is not that flammable. The fat will burn to light the torch up. 

Get a can or a jar. You can use an empty spaghetti sauce can. Cut the lid of the can and make a hole in the middle. 

Step 2: Pour the Vegetable and Essential Oils

In the empty can, pour 1 cup of vegetable oil and essential oil. It’s better to use rose or lavender oils. Use not more than  2 teaspoons of essential oils.

But be careful while pouring as it’s hard to remove oil stains from clothes

Step 3: Use Herbs to Repellent Bugs

Afterward, you can use a few other things which will get rid of bugs. You can use all of them or even one of them. Use eucalyptus repellent Mosquito. 

Put the herbs in the jar with the oil. And let it stay there for an hour or so.

Step 4: Put the Wick Through the Hole

Now that your oil is ready. Put the wick through the hole in the lid. You must wait a few minutes so the wick sips the oil in. Wait 20 minutes or so for the wick to be wet.

Put the lid on and your oil is ready.

Step 5: Light up the Fire

Bring the wick out of the can ½ an inch. Light the wick up which is exposed out of the can. You can use normal matches or a gaslighter. 

At last, place the can on top of the tiki torch. 

And, here you go. You have a functioning tiki torch fueled by vegetable oil. 


Questions: How can I make the wick?

Answers: You can use fabric rope to make the wick. Or cotton strips to make the wick.

Question: How long will the fuel burn?

Answer: The duration of the burn will depend on how much oil you use. A cup of vegetable oil or 16 ounces of alcohol will last several hours. 

Question: Can I use gas lighter fluid as tiki torch fuel? 

Answer: No. Using gaslighter fluid is really dangerous. It can burst into flames and cause a fire. 


By following all the above steps you know how to make tiki torch fuel. It’s not that hard to do so.

Always be careful when you’re working with flames. Don’t let children play with the torch.

Have fun at the patio party!