How to Light an Oil Hanukkah Menorah

Jews all around the world celebrate Hanukkah in remembrance of the miracle of the Hanukkah lights and celebration of the rededication of the Second Temple of Jerusalem. The miracle that is still remember and cherished today by the Jews involved one day worth of olive oil burning for eight days during the Maccabees’ campaign to reclaim the holy temple.

The Hanukkah celebrations start in late December, with the lighting of the menorah, also known as the Hanukkah. There is a specific way to light an oil Hanukkah menorah, which is really easy to learn.


  • 1

    The first thing that you need to do is to set aside some time for lighting the menorah. The task is not exactly a very time consuming one, but it requires a sincere commitment, which is why you should not let yourself become distracted with something else. If you have already poured olive oil in the menorah, then it should not take you more than 10 to 15 minutes to light the menorah.

  • 2

    Remember to get the nine candles for the menorah. Obviously, you will require a nine-candled menorah, which is called a Hanukkah menorah. While you will be lighting the eight candles over the course of eight days, the ninth candle called shamash, distinct from others due to its large size, will be lit every day and used to light the other eight candles.

  • 3

    Refer to the Hebrew calendar to calculate the 24th day of Kislev, the Hebrew month. Confirm whether the aforementioned day falls on Shabbos. It is important to confirm this because if it does, you will have to light the first candle before sunset.

  • 4

    On the first night of Hanukkah, light the shamash and then place it in its position in the middle of the menorah.

  • 5

    Place the first candle in the right-most position on the menorah and then use the shamash to light the candle after reading the three blessings. After you have used the shamash to light the candle, put it back in its position.

  • 6

    Let the candle burn for at least 45 minutes. In case the flame goes out, light the candle again, unless it is Shabbos.

  • 7

    On the subsequent nights of Hanukkah, start by placing the candles corresponding to the night of Hanukkah on the menorah from the right to the left. However, begin lighting the candle from the left to the right, which basically means that the last candle that you place on the menorah should be lit first. Remember to use the shamash to light the candles and instead of reading all three blessings, read two blessings.

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