Not sure if you can tell, but we really like electricity.
As a major distributor of industrial-strength electrical connectors, that makes sense, right? And even though we don’t produce a Remke line of Christmas lighting options (yet), oh how we love them.
With the Holidays on our doorstep, it’s time to make the rest of your house shine bright. We scavenged the Internet and landed on the DIY Network to share with you some Christmas outdoor lighting hacks & tips. Enjoy!
Use a good, stable ladder when installing lights and secure them with insulated holders (never use tacks or nails). Be sure not to install lights on trees that come in contact with power lines.
The power source should come from a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlet. This type of outlet will shut the circuit down if there is overcurrent. If you don’t have a GFCI outlet, a qualified electrician can permanently install one outdoors for holiday seasons to come. Or, you can buy a portable outdoor unit from your local home store for less than $20.
Always use waterproof or water-resistant lights with a tag marked underwriter lab (UL). This means the lights meet national industry standards with the American National Standards Institute. Also, when you’re buying Christmas lights to use outside, make sure they are rated for outdoor use (just like your extension cords).
Double Check Your Lights Before You Hang.
Before installing your Christmas lights, plug them in to make sure all of your bulbs are working. That seems like a no-brainer, but you don’t want to spend hours creating an intricate light display only have them flat line when plugged in.
String Light Tips:
Map out your scheme carefully before installation.
Strings are designed to plug into each other to create long runs, but never use more than three strings on any one run.
Plug light strings into same-length strings. Don’t mix and match strings of different lengths — the wires are rated for different amperages.
Measure the distance carefully and write everything down so you’ll only have to make one trip to the store.
If you need a measurement for spiraling up a post or tree trunk, wrap a string around it, then lay the string flat to measure the length you’ll need.
Invest in some LEDs!
A string of LEDs cost about twice as much as same-sized incandescent bulbs, but because LEDs are so long-lasting, the price differential is erased after two to three years of use. LEDs last two to three times longer than incandescent bulbs. Plus, LED bulbs typically are made of lightweight plastic and less likely to break than glass incandescent bulbs. LED light strings also feature more bulbs per string. Take the plunge!
There’s so much out there about Christmas lighting, and we could go on, seriously. But instead, here are some resources worth taking a look at yourself.
Here’s a great list of the coolest tech products available for exterior Christmas lights.
This Popular Mechanics article maps out literally everything you need to know about Christmas lights. It’s something to print out and hang in your garage.
And last but not least, you can always rely on Pinterest to fill your head with ideas, hacks, and hints about anything. Here’s a board about hanging Christmas lights to get you started. Good luck and Godspeed diving into that rabbit hole.
Enjoy the tips and let us know how your grand holiday light scheme worked out! Comment below with a photo of the finished product.
If you have a question about holiday lights, we probably don’t have the answer. BUT if you have a question related to cord grips, electrical connectors, or manufacturing in general, we’ve got your back.
Send us an email through the contact form below – we’d love to hear from you!