Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

I bought new 2 Heritage Grandes a couple of months back with black starlite base and dimmer. Both have clear liquid.
Both are running in the same room with same ambient temp. About 65F
One has Neon Green lava one has Neon Pink (Actually really nice red).

Ive run the one with Green lava a few times
and it seems stable and makes nice large lava blobs and shapes, sometimes the top and bottom lava connect. Using dimmer can adjust to my liking. So all seems well with the Green Lava.

The Neon Pink (Actually Really nice red) however it only worked nicely, once the first time I used it, it's lava shapes looked just like the Green lava version.

I've only run the Neon Pink one 3 or 4 times. Now it just spits grape to pingpong ball size blobs no matter the dimmer setting. At 100 percent makes about 15 of em happening at one time. Lesser setting produces less of them but at the same small grape to pingpong ball size blobs size. I've tried all dimmer settings from no flow to full flow

So something in the lava or liquid changed after the first use.
I was careful not to overheat.

Any ideas to get bigger blobs?

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Thanks for reply. Hopefully someone else had that prob and fixed it and will share how they did it.

Room temp might be too cold for the pink lamp.  You can switch the lamps around and see if it makes a difference, also make sure it's not in a draft.  You could also try covering it with a towel during warm up, but don't leave unattended.

Hi Keith

Room temp might be too cold for the pink lamp.  You can switch the lamps around and see if it makes a difference, also make sure it's not in a draft.

Today I'm trying switching bases. These take about 6 hours to get flowing so I should know tonight if that did any good.

Tomorrow I'll try upping the room temp. 

You could also try covering it with a towel during warm up, but don't leave unattended.

Is the purpose of covering with towel to simulate higher ambient temp?

In effect, yes.  Or to put it another way, to make the globe retain heat that would be lost to a cooler room.  I have a green that takes about 5 hours to heat up, ambient temp about 72.

Frank Lee Hawkins said:

Hi Keith

You could also try covering it with a towel during warm up, but don't leave unattended.

Is the purpose of covering with towel to simulate higher ambient temp?

Make sure the coil is covered in wax on the pink one as well.  If the wax is not connected all the way around, it's not getting the lava hot enough either.

I was able to fix mine. I had the same problem. My new hot pink and clear grande lamp I just got 2 months ago worked great and then it changed to just spit balloons, peas, grapes and then overheated. I let it cool and tried it and it was the same. I tried spinning it and it wouldn't stick to all of the coil. I took a smaller coil and threw it in and it started working. I replaced the original coil and took out the smaller coil and it now flows just like all my others. Since I changed the coil, it doesn't overheat with the dimmer on high.

I tested the original coil I took out and a magnet would stick to it so I Just bought a Menards zinc coated compression spring. Works great but no idea how long that will last. I need a good source for grande coils.

These hot pink and clear grandes are absolutely beautiful when they're running right. Wish they lit up under a black light but they don't.

i agree with bridget.  to expand, heat the globe until the wax is in a liquid state.  then take the globe off the base and place it on a flat surface.  put your hand on the top of the globe and gently swirl the globe back and forth while keeping the base of the globe on the flat surface.  this helps the wax adhere to the coil and will give you larger blobs.

Bridget T said:

Make sure the coil is covered in wax on the pink one as well.  If the wax is not connected all the way around, it's not getting the lava hot enough either.

Thanks to all for your replies.

I wanted to try a few things before posting here again.
Here's a few things I've tried.
Tried upping room temp to from 68 to 82. No change.

Tried swapping bases with older Grande base which seems to have 1 inch more clearance between bulb and globe bottom. No change

Looked at springs in 4 lava lamps while cold and this Pink Grande spring is the least covered with the wax by far.

So I heated it and while wax was hot on the pink grande I put on some gloves lifted globe over my head and could see the spring bottom was still not surrounded in wax. So I set the globe on flat surface and did various slow moves to the globe until the spring was fully engulfed in wax. I then set it back on it's base.
It took a couple of minutes to get flowing again and for a few minutes the lava flowed correctly just like the first perfect run. And I thought cooool it's fixed. I thought Wrong.

After 5 minutes the flow returned to messing up and spitting grapes again. I again checked spring and again the spring was not coated at the bottom where it's resting on the glass. So I repeated process. It ran ok for about 5 minutes again, then returned to messing up and spitting grapes again.

So now I'm not sure if it's bad wax or bad spring or if i should keep trying to reattach wax hoping that 3rd or 20th time is a charm.

One of you had said.

I tested the original coil I took out and a magnet would stick to it so I Just bought a Menards zinc coated compression spring.

So then sounds like spring being magnetic is somehow bad? could someone explain that?

I'm trying to avoid popping Grande top to add another spring, but I do have a small lava lamp I could sacrifice for it's spring to toss in the grande if that the only reasonable coarse of action left.

Yeah, if it's not a heat issue it's most likely a spring issue.  Sometimes a coil will have issues and the wax just won't adhere to it.  Actually, zinc coated springs aren't recommended because of deterioration issues but stainless steel is.  Several members have used stainless steel screen door springs with good effect, but the coil from the other lamp may be just fine.  Since you've only had the lamps for a couple of months, you might try contacting Lava Lamp to see if they will send a replacement.  They do have a pretty good track record in that regard.  Susan is the one to contact, but I don't have her contact info right now.

Since you've only had the lamps for a couple of months, you might try contacting Lava Lamp to see if they will send a replacement.  They do have a pretty good track record in that regard.  Susan is the one to contact, but I don't have her contact info right now.

I called Susan, She was very nice but has no access to coils. So I grabbed a small coil from and old 20oz lamp and put it in. I left the big coil in there. So now there's 2 coils. I think that having both in there should make enough heat to work right. If 2 coils make it a little too hot, There's always the dimmer.

I put the smaller coil in the cold grande figuring it will settle to the bottom once the wax gets flowing.

I'll post here later as to if it worked or not. I was also thinking that if the 2 springs get tangled in the future and and one of them stands upright and ugly. I could redo it using one large spring stainless steel spring from a hardware store or worst case sacrifice my 15 old grande for it's coil. Or maybe someone will be sell separately proper lava coils by then.

Yep, that worked. Dimmer does have to be at 100% to get enough heat to the coils, but I can live with that. I've sealed it back up and am back in happy Grande land.  Thanks to all for all the help :)

one of my neon grandes has 2 coils and one has only 1 coil.  i imagine they did this for a reason.  perhaps a variation in the formula, requiring more heat?  maybe they forgot to put 2 coils in some that need more heat to flow properly?  i have no idea!  regardless, glad your lamp is working!

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