How Efficient Are Your Christmas Lights?

LEDs or Incandescents?

With the holiday season approaching, it’s a good time to take inventory of your Christmas lights. Are your decorative lights LEDs or incandescent?

Many shoppers opt for incandescent lights because they’re cheaper, familiar, and come in a variety of colors and sizes, however, they are going to need to be replaced more often and cost more to keep on. According to, incandescent string lights have a lifespan of about 1,000 hours while LEDs can last up to 50,000! That’s a handful of holiday seasons’ worth of incandescents and a lifetime of holiday seasons worth of LEDs. LEDs are also safer to decorate with. According to, LED string lights are the best option if you want to connect multiple strings. You can connect up to 24 strings of LED lights to a single wall socket. Incandescent lights can overload the socket and could increase the risk of electrical fires.

Convinced to switch yet? Let’s look at the cost of running them.

How much can I save if I switch to LEDs?

Incandescent string lights are less energy efficient because they lose about 90% of their electricity to heat. LEDs require less wattage and less electricity, meaning they could save you up to 80% on your electricity bill during the holiday season. According to the Department of Energy, the cost of using 200 incandescent mini-lights on a tree for 10 holiday seasons is $122.19, while 200 LED lights would only cost $17.99 over the same amount of time.

Although the initial buying cost is higher than traditional incandescent lights, LEDs offer long term savings. Plus, you don’t have to worry about the bulbs getting hot or having to replace the bulbs since they don’t burn out like standard incandescent string lights!

I already have LED lights, what else can I do?

Already have LED string lights and want to become more energy efficient? According to, purchasing a Christmas light timer can help manage when your lights are on and off. A timer will help you manage your energy usage, all while eliminating the stress of wondering if you went to bed or left town with your lights on.

What should I do with my old lights?

Before you ditch your incandescent or broken lights in the trash, consider recycling them! Lowes and Mom’s Organic Market offer programs to safely recycle your old Christmas lights for you. Online retailer, Holiday LEDs offers customers a coupon for LED lights when you return your old ones via USPS.

Thank you for reading. Our team at Energy Efficiency Experts hope you and your family have a safe, efficient, and wonderful holiday season.

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