More About Candle Covers aka Candle Sleeves


Are you searching for new chandelier candle sleeves?

I’m guessing your candle sleeves (aka covers) have become brittle and are breaking.  Or, they have turned an uneven and unsightly yellow.  Or, they’ve burned around the edges.  All of these occurrences are good reason to buy new candle covers.  So, how do you figure out what to buy?

Sizing – How to determine the proper size of your candle cover.

You will need to know how long they are – top to bottom.  Chandelier manufacturers use many different sizes – there is no standard.  Some are easy to cut with scissors or a serrated  knife, but others require a ban saw to cut. We are always happy to cut to size.

Next, you will need to measure the diameter.  Here are the most common diameters:

European Base - 15/16" inside

European Base Candle Covers

The European Base (for E14 220 sockets) is almost 1″.  These are not standard in the USA, but if you have imported a chandelier from Europe and are using bulb adapters, the above cover could be what you need.  We do have these available – but not on the web site.  Give us a call.

Candelabra Base is 7/8″ inside

Candelabra base candle covers

The Candelabra Base, above, is most common.  These are for the small, E12 sockets, and the covers are 7/8″ diameter.

Medium Base is 1 3/8″ inside

Medium base candle cover

The Medium Base socket cover is 1 3/8″.  This size is more commonly used on lamps these days, but prior to the 1950’s, it was quite common to see these on a chandelier.


For safety sake, don’t put higher than the recommended wattage in any socket, but most especially if you don’t want to ruin your candle sleeve.  A high wattage bulb will turn the edges dark or can even create a fire hazard.

Make sure that the cardboard insulator is slightly above the edge of the cover – this protects the cover from the heat of the light bulb.

Quick Tip

If the edges of your cover are brown, simply remove your light bulb, slip the covers off and turn them upside down.  Slip them right back on the socket so that the burnt edges are on the bottom and hidden.


Candle covers are made of so many materials, but the most common is plastic.  Some plastic is heavy walled and opaque.  Some is not – so make sure to purchase quality plastic. Polymers are also common and frequently used to create the covers that look like wax drip candles. Cardboard is also available – a bit more like the old styles.  And, there are wax covers – which is beautiful, but make sure to follow the recommended wattage maximums so that they don’t melt.  Some more modern fixtures have metal covers, but these don’t generally need to be replaced.


This is a matter of preference – there is no advantage in choosing one color over another.

As always, if we have missed any piece of information that you are curious about, send us an email or ask us here!


UPDATE to answer Elizabeth's question in our comment section:  

To extend a socket, you will have to change the socket out to a taller one or raise the existing one with a pipe under the socket. Either of these methods will require the wire to be longer to reach the higher contact points.  Sometimes there is enough slack in the wire to meet a higher point, but most likely the arms will need to have new wire pulled through. 

If you are lucky, your existing socket will be adjustable and set at the lowest point.  If so, you can loosen the screw holding the socket at the level it is and then slide it taller. Carefully.  Remember, the existing wire may not be long enough. 

Always turn your electricity off when working with your chandelier sockets! 

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  • Nancy Daniel
Comments 15
  • Nancy from King's Chandelier
    Nancy from King's Chandelier

    Hi Alissa. Electrical sockets do need a cardboard insulator for safety. It sounds like you need a medium base (without examining your fixture I couldn’t be sure), and I don’t have any of those with candle drips. :(

  • Alissa

    I am wondering if it is okay to cover the sockets on some light fixtures with plastic candle covers, or if I need to put in cardboard insulators, first?? (I have a photo, but am not sure how to attach it, so could you please email me and I can send it to you?) Also, on that note, I think I’d like white covers with drips… from what I can tell it is about 4" tall and 1 1/8" interior diameter tube that fits…. do you carry those? (I would need 10) Thanks!

  • Nancy from King's Chandelier
    Nancy from King's Chandelier

    Hi Robin. Without examining the fixture, it is difficult to determine how (or if) you can change your chandelier from medium base E26 sockets to candelabra sockets E12 without covers. However, I can made a generalization or two. There are candelabra based sockets that are JUST the sockets – not extenders to make it tall. You may be able to attach those once you have removed the existing sockets, but there will be 1’ or so of the actual socket that will need to be covered. I recommend having an electrician look at it. You can also purchase reducers – E26 to E12, which will reduce the bulb size without changing the socket.

    Many of the older chandeliers were made with E26 sockets and glass globes, and we frequently change these to the extended candelabra sockets.

  • Robin

    I purchased a used light fixture and want to make some changes to it. It has 8 arms with regular bulbs in sconces pointing up. I would like to change these to candelabra style with no covers. Can this be done?

  • Nancy from King's Chandelier
    Nancy from King's Chandelier

    Hi Emily. I believe you sent us an email about your unusual piece – which, unfortunately, I do not have a solution for you. I wish I could help!

  • Emily

    I’m trying to replace what appears to be the base/bottom of an exposed candle on my antique chandelier. The plastic pieces are ~2” long, 1.5” in dia, are hollow- but with one end solid fitted with a long narrow screw that screws in underneath the socket casing holding. so it appears the candles are being “held” mid- pillar (vs resting in the socket base), and when viewed from below, you just see the solid candle bottom. I have seen plenty of candle sleeve replacement options, but never these lower “base” pieces. Any ideas of where/how to find replacement pieces? Thanks!

  • Nancy with King's Chandelier
    Nancy with King's Chandelier

    Hi Zara. It should be safe to use metal as long as you have the insulators. They are cardboard pieces that cover the socket where the electrical connections are made. They cover all of the actual socket and the screws holding the wires tight. Also, you need to make sure that the bulbs do not touch the metal.

  • Zara

    Hi, is it safe to use metal covers for my light? How do I know if the light has an insulated socket? Please let me know. Thank you

  • Nancy from King's Chandelier
    Nancy from King's Chandelier

    Hi Faith. I truly have no idea what is going on. As long as the bulb can reach the connection in the socket, the cover should not make a difference. You say that the over is cut to the right height, though, so that should not be the problem.

  • Faith Johnson
    Faith Johnson

    Replaced chandelier socket cover, cut to riight height, screwed in light bulb. Bulb will not work. Take cover off, screw in same light bulb without a cover. Bulb works. What’s going on?

  • Nancy from King's Chandelier
    Nancy from King's Chandelier

    Hi Jan. I’ve sent you an email with some possible sources. I don’t have any Euro covers with the drips. :(

  • Jan Kagley
    Jan Kagley

    I have a lovely chandelier I purchased in Venice Italy. It’s candle covers have become brittle. I need to replace them but they are European dimension not North American. I need six covers which are white and have faux candle drips on the top. The dimensions are 25mm ID and 2 1/2” tall but maybe 70 mm tall. How can I find what I need?

  • Nancy from King's Chandelier
    Nancy from King's Chandelier

    Hi Meg… in addition to my email to you, I have a bit more information. Our resident expert, Tim, says he hasn’t seen any that have been actually glued to a candelabra socket. Usually, what you are experiencing is one that has shrunk so much, that it fits really, really tight. You can try to “slit” it open with a sharp edge, but make sure to disconnect your power and don’t cut the wires underneath! When we have covers that are to tight to remove, we take the socket off, then use brute strength to pull the cover.

  • Meg Ann
    Meg Ann

    Our candle socket covers appear to be glued into the chandelier. Any recommendations for best way to remove?

  • Elizabeth Richardson
    Elizabeth Richardson

    I would like to replace my candle covers with longer ones. Do you sell parts that would allow me to extend the height of the sockets from the chandelier “arms” ? I think a longer-looking candle will really improve the look of my chandelier. Thanks!

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