Electric Menorah

August 21, 2011 | by Aish.com

Can an electric menorah with light bulbs be used during Chanukah?

The Aish Rabbi Replies

We do not allow an electric Menorah for Chanukah, since it does not burn in the same manner as the oil-and-wick lamps that were used in the Temple.

Another problem using a Chanukah menorah is that you must have enough fuel at the time of lighting to burn for at least 30 minutes after nightfall. The problem is that when you turn on your electric Menorah, you do not actually have 30 minutes of "stored fuel" there on the spot. ("Har Tzvi" by Rabbi Tzvi Pesach Frank)

However, some authorities do allow an electric Menorah, and it could be used if no other option is available. You must be sure to place these lights in a way that it's recognizable that it is especially for Chanukah (i.e. not where electric bulbs are usually lit). And being that many authorities do not allow it, the blessings should not be recited. (Rabbi Ovadia Yosef - Yabia Omer 3:35:7)

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