The lava lamp was invented in 1963 with a British guy named Edward Craven-Walker, and found by a pair of American entrepreneurs in 1965. The remainder is groovy history, at least if you lived through the 1960s in the usa. No matter how lovingly maintained, lava lamps can become unclear. Whether you are repairing a flea market find or restoring a beloved personal treasure, you can clear up that muddy water. But, before you begin, you must ensure that the lava lamp is totally cold and all the wax has settled to the bottom.
Unplug the lava lamp and unscrew the top, using vise grips, if necessary. Put a folded dish towel between the vise grips and also the lid to avoid scratching or breaking the glass. Turn on the lid counterclockwise to unscrew it.
Pour all the water out of the lava lamp. Do this very slowly so that you don’t disturb the wax in the bottom of the lamp.
Pour cold water gradually into the lava lamp, allowing it to run down the side rather than splashing directly onto the cold wax. Fill the lava lamp with 2 to 4 inches of water.
Swirl the cold water gently in the lava lamp to wash out the interior of the glass. Pour it out attentively. Repeat this three to four times until the glass is clean.
Fill the lava lamp with water, just to where the neck starts to narrow. Hold the lamp at an angle below the faucet and let the water rush down the side so that you don’t disturb the wax.
Wipe down the exterior of the lamp to ensure there are no wet spots. Plug in the lamp. Turn on the lava lamp. Do not touch it or move it until all the wax has melted. It is going to likely not climb up the way you’re used to seeing it in this point.
Add two drops of dish soap to your lava lamp.
Dissolve 4 tbsp. Of Epsom salts into about 1 cup of warm water. The measurement doesn’t have to be precise. Stir the water until all the Epsom salts meltdown. Keep adding Epsom salts to the water until it stops spreading. If your glass will not take longer that 5 or 6 tablespoons of Epsom salts, stand the glass in a bowl of warm water. You want the water to be supersaturated with the Epsom salts as you possibly can.
Lift a very small bit of the salt water to a straw, pipette or eyedropper. Carefully add it to the lava lamp, a couple of drops at a time.
Put the lid back to the lava lamp once the wax starts splitting in smaller pieces the way that it did when it was brand new, or is at least close to doing this.