Choosing the right lights for your Christmas needs involves the consideration of a number of different variables. As you probably already know, not all lights are created equally and some are fit for some purposes more than others are.
Types of Christmas Lights
Replacement bulbs are often the cheapest of all lights but allow you to change the lights when they burn out. However, they can be quite problematic as one bulb going can mean a number go out and this means you have to locate the right bulb before the other’s work. This can take time and patience. These lights often have short lifespans and often only work for two or three years before needing to be replaced.
Non-replaceable bulbs – these cannot be replaced and so eliminates the need to find a broken bulb. On the downside if a bulb breaks then you have to throw them out.
LED – No copper wire here and a longer life than traditional lights (up to 50,000 hours) means that LED are quite a good option for Christmas lights. They also don’t heat up and can be used indoors and outdoors depending on the lights.
Solar Lights – These are the perfect outdoor light and mix solar and LED technology to provide a long lasting light that is low on running costs and lasts longer than the standard. They do cost more than many other lights, but are a great choice.
Battery – Portable and easy to carry around, they don’t need a plug and are ideal for hanging on specific items. However, batteries need replacing quite often. Many battery lights come with a range of twinkle and static settings.
10 Tips for Choosing Lights
- Lights for outside are different from indoor lights and need to be conditioned to withstand cold and wet conditions. Make sure your lights are certified for this purpose if you are using them outside
- Of course, you should never use outdoor lights inside as they won’t have been safety tested for indoor use. Nowadays it is possible to purchase lights that perform both functions.
- Generally 50 lights per foot (12inches) is sufficient
- If you want a more traditional feel coloured lights can really help, they also mean you won’t need as many decorations.
- Clear Christmas lights are more contemporary and stylish
- Consider access points before you place the tree in the room, as you won’t want leads strewn across the floor.
- Lights can also be added to windows via suction cupsamd across mantel pieces with garland hooks
- Check lights before packing them away each year. Always replace bulbs before packing away and wrap them up in bubble wrap for best storage.
By following our guide to Christmas lights you can be sure your tree will look like the belle of the ball.
Cormac Reynolds writes for UK Christmas decoration site Festive Lights – the one stop shop for all things festive.
Photo Credit: Sebastian Dooris (CC BY 2.0)
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