Castor oil is an essential oil prepared from castor seeds or Ricinus communis.
Moreover, this oil has been in existence over the centuries and it became popular for its numerous uses such as serving as a laxative or emollients, treatment of rheumatism, serving as an important oil for aromatherapy, etc.
So, in this guide, we will enlighten you about everything you should know about castor oil as well as discover whether or not castor oil is flammable.
What Is Castor Oil?
The primary ingredient in castor oil is “Ricinoleic or Linoleic acid.” Meanwhile, ricinoleic acid is a flammable acid that causes skin burns when it touches the skin.
On the other hand, ricinoleic acid in castor oil is used in the treatment of some forms of cancers. Owing to this, castor oil is a special oil used throughout the world.
However, the presence of flammable ricinoleic acid in castor oil made a lot of castor oil consumers wonder if the oil is flammable or not.
So, Is Castor Oil Flammable?
Yes and no. Castor oil is non-flammable but can catch flames when subjected to high heat. The flammability grade for castor oil is 1 which corresponds to high combustibility and low ignitability.
That is, castor oil will combust readily but will not ignite easily unlike flammable zinc. Hence, it is very unlikely for castor oil to catch fire unless it is exposed to ignition sources (eg, open flames, candles, or sparks) that can activate its flammability nature.
Cooking with castor oil in an oven can also enable the oil to ignite readily. Therefore, before using or cooking with castor oil, read the package instructions carefully and take the necessary precautions.
What Is The Flashpoint Of Castor Oil?
Castor oil has a flashpoint of about 444.2°F. At this temperature and in the presence of naked flames, castor oil will ignite readily.
Likewise, the autoignition temperature for castor oil is 838.4°F. Without any ignition source, castor oil will auto-ignite spontaneously at this temperature and might even explode.
Is Jamaican Black Castor Oil Flammable?
No, the Jamaican black castor oil or black castor oil is neither flammable nor is it explosive. This is because Jamaican castor oil is stable under normal circumstances and even at ambient temperatures.
Jamaican black castor oil is made from the seeds of the castor bean plant which makes it non-flammable under normal conditions. However, when subjected to extremely high temperatures which are not possibly feasible in our homes, black castor will catch fire.
Plus, this form of castor oil is used as a laxative for the treatment of some skin conditions.
Can You Burn Castor Oil?
Since castor oil is not flammable, you can not burn it. Castor oil will only burn at a relatively high temperature.
Castor oil is a non-flammable oil, nevertheless, you need to observe some safety precautions while using it. As useful as castor oil is, it could also be dangerous, although the benefits of castor oil to humans surpass its hazards big time.
Ranging from castor oil’s rejuvenating, antifungal and anti-inflammatory effects on the skin to its ability to relieve constipation, castor oil is indispensable.
Lastly, here is a safety data sheet for castor oil that explains more about how to handle the oil safely.