Tips for Outdoor Christmas Lighting
Chrissy in Indiana asks for Tips when Installing Outdoor Christmas Holiday Lights: Safe Practices for Installing Outdoor Christmas Lights.
Outdoor Christmas and Holiday Lights
Electrical Question: Only one part of our Christmas lights are working since we had the rain storm.
- A couple of weeks ago, I spent an enormous amount of time putting up our Outdoor Christmas Lights.
- I created our own swag lights using 3 sets of mini lights to make the swags 100, 150, and 200.
- A couple of days ago I tested them and they looked great. We didn’t keep them on because we were waiting to light them on Thanksgiving night.
- It rained almost all day Wednesday and all of Thanksgiving day, and it reached freezing temperatures last night.
- Now only one part of our lights are working and come on with a timer every time.
- The majority of our lights are not working since we had the rain storm.
- My dad checked the GFCI circuit and that wasn’t the problem, and it wasn’t a circuit breaker in the basement because our porch lights work fine and that is where the power comes from for the mini Christmas lights.
- I’m wondering if some rain water got into the power strips or extension cords and froze which shorted out our lights.
Could this be?
How can I fix them?
Will they thaw or dry out and begin to work again without me doing anything?
I have the light keeper and have tried plugging the strands into it and pulling the trigger 20 times, but had no luck.
Please, PLEASE help me! I’m desperate and don’t know what to do!
Thanks so much!
This electrical question came from: Chrissy, a Other from Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Thanks for your electrical question Chrissy.
Safe Practices for Installing Outdoor Christmas Lights
- If the plug strips are not rated for being used outside then this will be a problem especially if they are getting wet. The outdoor designation is known as NEMA 3R and water proof or water resistant depending on the exact application and exposure to the weather elements.
- Drying out the Christmas lights and plug strips may help but this will most likely happen again.
- Keep in mind that a lot of these strands of Christmas lights have built in fuse protection that is designed to prevent overloading the wires which can lead to a hazardous condition including causing a fire.
Tips for Installing Outdoor Christmas Holiday Lights
- Make sure to use electrical extension cords and multiple outlets that are rated for outdoor use.
- Install the power source components in covered areas where they will not be exposed to direct weather.
- Always plug outdoor holiday lights into GFCI protected circuits or GFI outlets.
More about the Home Electrical System
Wiring GFI Outlets
- GFCI and GFI Wiring Diagrams
- The features and benefits of GFCI outlets and receptacles will give you a clear understanding of the importance why these safety devices are required by code to help protect you and your family against accidental electrical
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.
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