Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

Hello!

I have two fluidium lava lamps and just recently was able to get the UK and European converter plugs that now allows me to plug them into my American outlets. However, I have two issues....

1. It seems like it is taking hours for the lava inside the lamp to do anything so I am wondering if maybe I don't have the right bulb in the lamp? Does anyone know what kind of bulb a fluidium takes? Is it normal for fluidium lamps to just take hours to heat up and do anything?

2. Also, my orange fluidium lava lamp arrived from Germany very cloudy. It was sent during the summer when it was very hot and wasn't packaged very well so I believe it got shaken up while the lava was warm and that caused the cloudiness. I thought that maybe it would settle down once sitting for a long time and then warming it up but it hasn't. So I researched how to refill a lava lamp using this method here in this video.. ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E1cLubV7vuc ) but wasn't sure if this would work for a fluidium lamp as well. Lastly, is there any other way to clear up the cloudiness besides this method above or is the only best way. Can anyone help me with this?

Thanks in advance! <3

- Lovin Lava

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If you are using the fluidiums with the original mathmos bulbs, they will not work properly being plugged directly into a US wall outlet by only using a plug converter.  UK uses 220-240V in home outlets whereas 120V in the US. You can get a 40W 120V bulb that will screw into the lava lamp and that should work fine. Or you can get a step up power converter and plug it into your house outlet and then plug the fluidium into the converter and up the Voltage to the U.K. standard of 220-240V that the lava lamp was designed to use.  Personally, I can tell you from experience having ordered a Astro from Mathmos, took a few extra steps to get it shipped to me here in the US, that the US 40W 120V e14 base bulbs made my Astro flow beautifully.  You will most likely need to go online to buy that particular bulb as most places in the US won’t keep an e14 base bulb in stock. It is possible to find them in stock at some places though. I found two at a local specialty bulb store and scooped them up.  I personally opted to run my Astro off of the original 35w 240V e14 Halogen reflector bulb that came with it using the step up converter. Honestly, I can’t really tell a difference in the flow between using a regular US 120V bulb or the 240V bulb. Regardless of the Voltage, the lamp is designed to use a 40w bulb, so as long as you are running a 40w whether it’s 120 or 240V, the same max wattage is being used. The 120V allows less energy to flow to the bulb at once where the 240 lets more flow to the bulb at once.  Either way only 40w is being used.  For the cloudiness of the one lava lamp, try turning it on until the wax is fully melted then turn it off and let it completely cool down. Then you can try to run it again. That’s the only method I know of personally besides changing the fluid. Hope this helps. 

Thanks you so so much for all of this helpful information!

I've been researching step up converters since i read your reply and I believe I am going to go that direction since that is the voltage they were made to function on which makes sense to me.

I did want to ask if you have a converter that you would recommend and was also wondering what wattage converter is appropriate for Mathmos lava lamps, specifically fluidiums? I see that there are 1000 watts all the way to 5000 (less as well). What wattage is appropriate? I want to get what I need for my lamps to function well but not go overboard and break the bank if that makes sense. Was looking at this one... https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07T1GXSH3/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?...

Would that be a good one or would you suggest something else? Thanks in advance for the helpful guidance and advice!

Hi, I am glad to help. Honestly, the easiest and cheapest method of getting the lamp running properly would be to get a 120v bulb that will screw directly into the lamp.  If you want to get a power converter the you’ll need to figure out the max watts used in order to determine the size converter to buy.  The fluidium uses a 40watt ses halogen floodlight.  You’ll multiply the 40w times how many hours per day you’ll run the lava lamp. So for instance, if you run it 8-10 hrs a day which is typically the max recommended run time, you’ll get between 320-400watts used per day.  Your converter should be able to handle this output plus a certain percentage more to ensure that it doesn’t burn out.   I’ve seen recommendations differ from 25% - 50% of the additional wattage added to the max wattage to get the total wattage needed for the converter.  Basically, I go with the 20-30% recommendation.  That would be 25% of 400 watts added to 400w which equals 600 total watts. So I would suggest between a 500watt and a 750 watt step up converter. I run a 500 watt converter for my Astros and I’ve had no problems at all. As far as brand, I don’t have a clue. I bought the cheapest 500w up converter that I could find on amazon that had a U.K. plug on the front. I can send you the info for that particular converter if you’d like.  Again, it is definitely worth trying to get a 120v bulb with an e14 base and screw it in and see if it works well enough to avoid the up converter. From experience, my lamp flows exactly the same on the 120v bulb as it does on the 240v mathmos bulb and up converter. I opted for the converter just so I would know for sure that what I’m seeing is exactly what Mathmos intended. But it looked great both ways!  I’ll get back to you with the converter info shortly. Hope this helps!

Thank you so much for all your helpful advice!! I really appreciate it!

Based on what you shared about your experience then I think I will try the light bulb first before investing in a converter. Do you think that this light bulb from amazon will work well? 

Looks like it fits what you described. (120v bulb, 40 watt bulb with an e14 screw in base)

https://www.amazon.com/40R16-120V-E14-Volts-120V-Watts-Reflector/dp...

If the bulb above is incorrect, could you suggest a good one?

And yes, if you can please send me the info on the converter you got. That would be very helpful as well! :o) 

Yes that bulb should work. They have multi packs of the same ones.  That’s very similar to what I used. I’m adding a photo of the converter that I got for mine. 

Thank you so much! I'm going to get some of those bulbs and see how it goes. Do you know if all mathmos lamps take that same bulb? Asking because I also have an astro baby and an astro original that I'm trying to get working as well and if they take that same bulb I will order enough for each I have. 

I’m sure different models take different bulbs. I go to the Mathmos website and click on the extras or replacements tab and find the lamp I’m looking for and check out the specs for the bulb.  The voltage will be different in the Mathmos site but the wattage of the bulb will the same as the wattage of the bulb you will need here in a 120v. What lamps do you need bulbs for?  I’ll find out the bulb for ya. 

Oh wow! Thank you! And yes, that makes sense that different lamps would require different bulb types. I believe what I have is a copper mathmos astro original lamp and then two mathmos astro baby lamps. Thanks again so much!

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