Hang Your Christmas Lights

Christmas Lights

Tips for Hanging Your Christmas Lights

Christmas LightsThe time to deck your halls is fast approaching. Decorating your home or business for Christmas includes adorning and lighting the outside. The hanging of Christmas lights often presents a huge challenge. To help with this here are a few tricks of the trade.
To make sure that hanging your outdoor lights plan ahead. It is much better and safer to do this before it gets too cold and wet outside. Because this can be tricky some people leave their lights up all year. This is not recommended. Having you Christmas lights outdoors all year not only is unsightly but it causes the strings to quickly deteriorate.
Depending on where you live the American Thanksgiving celebrated on fourth Thursday in November is often a guideline. Many people like to get their Christmas lights up early in November before the snow starts to fly. They may not turn them on at this time but they will be ready to go. Others like to wait to hang their lights until the American Thanksgiving weekend. In this case when they are all up they can be immediately used, as Christmas is then just a month away. Regardless of your preference be sure to pick a dry day when conditions are safe.
Christmas LightsPart of your early planning should be checking your strings of lights. After removing them from storage, inspect the strings for broken lights, and frayed cords. Throw away any strings that are not in good condition. It is a good idea to do this early because you may find you need to replace some of the strings. If you wish to continue with your previous theme you will need to shop for new ones while the stores still have a plentiful supply. As well as checking the strings of Christmas lights you should examine your extension cords and timers.
Draw up a plan of where you want the lights to go, then test the distances with the lengths of the strings and the extension cords. Set up your timers in easy to reach convenient places. You may find it easier if you use a tape measure to determine the width and height of the area you wish to light.
Christmas LightsBefore you start to hang check your strings of lights against your measurements. It is much easier to have an extra string on hand than to run short at a crucial point. If you need fasteners to hold the lights invest in several packages. Many new varieties are available that can be installed and left up all year. The clips should be about 12” apart in order to keep the strings hanging taut. Avoid the use of nails or staples as they wear away at the wire coverings and cause an electrical fire hazard.
Your plan should complement the style of your home and the look of the neighborhood. It is sometimes a good idea to get all the neighbors together to do a street look.
When you are all set to hang the lights, see if you can find a buddy to help. A second person to hand the lights to you and to steady the ladder will make the work safer and much easier.
Christmas LightsStart from the closest electrical outlet and work around the perimeter of your home. Anchor the lights in the clips and add strings as necessary. Be sure to keep the strings taut bearing in mind that the strings are not very strong. If you pull too hard the wires will break and the string will be useless. Be aware of how many strings that can be put together to conform to the electrical load limit. It may be necessary to use more than one outlet to accomplish your plan.
When you are finished test the lights and adjust as necessary. Remember there is no right or wrong idea for Christmas lights. Big to small displays all bring joy to the season.

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