A friend of mine bought a piece of furniture that had a super smelly wood varnish, so I read around online and someone said to light candles to burn the chemical fumes. Does anybody know if there is a chemical reaction between the wood varnish fumes and the candles? they are unscented candles and I assume they can break down the hydrocarbons in the wood varnish fumes. Are there any other harmful chemical in the wood varnish fumes that are not oxidized by the candles that cannot be smelled by humans?

  • $\begingroup$ He should let it stay to dry. Simply keep it on sun or in a dry, warm well-ventilated room for some time (days to weeks). $\endgroup$ – permeakra Mar 1 '15 at 18:41

Smelly compounds can be destroyed by free radicals wich are formed by a burning candle. But you need a lot of candles for your apartment. Candles were also used in bathrooms (after toilet visits) to destroy smelly compounds like $\ce{H2S, CH3-SH, CH3-S-CH3}$ ...

A better and safer way is it too use cyclodextrin. This compound absorbs molecules and destroys them as well. Cyclodextrin is the working stuff inside the air-improvement sprays.

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