‘Tis the season. Carols, hot chocolate, wrapping paper, and…CHRISTMAS LIGHTS!
Every year thousands of people pull out the lights and work to top Clark Griswold. But if you’re new to the Christmas light game, how do you know where to start?
We have some quick and easy tips to get you started on the road to Christmas light glory.
1. Plan–Yeah, yeah, this isn’t the part you want to think about. You just want to get started! But, a little planning will save you time later in the process. Think whether you want to hang lights from the gutter or shingles. Do you want white or colored lights, large or mini? Will you have lights on the bushes and trees, or just on the house? You could even take it one step further and actually measure all the straight lines you plan on attaching lights to.
2. Safety first–Be smart when hanging Christmas lights. The safest outlet to use is a ground fault circuit interrupter outlet. Also make sure your extension cords are rated for outdoor use, your lights are waterproof, and your ladder is sturdy. No one wants to spend Christmas in the emergency room!
3. Pick your light type–There are dozens of types of lights. The bigger C7 and C9 bulbs are more traditional, but miniature bulbs are becoming very popular. Net and icicle lights provide a nice punch to the landscape, and everyone loves the animated models sold in all the big box stores. LED lights will help you cut energy costs, and most fixtures come in LED options.
4. Get to work–Remember to use all purpose light clips instead of staples or nails. Take a step back regularly to assess your work and make sure it’s taking shape the way you want it to. Consider installing a timer along with the lights to guarantee they turn off when you want them to.
Now the best part. Call your whole family out into the yard, insist they drumroll and make a big production out of plugging everything in.
And hope it all works.