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Outdoor Christmas Lighting

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Happy Holidays! That time of the year is coming upon when fireplaces are donned with fancy red stockings, presents are wrapped in excited secrecy, and neighborhoods come alive with outdoor Christmas lighting. Many homeowners will be competing this season for the cutest and best choice of outdoor Christmas lighting on the block!

As with many traditions, outdoor Christmas lighting has a history reaching far back into more than just one culture. The concept originated with lighting midwinter fires in places like ancient Scandinavia. Whole trees were lit on fire during the Yuletide festival. Sometimes a wheel was also set on fire and sent rolling down a hill, representing the journey of the sun!

Gradually the custom evolved from fire to small pinpoints of light. The first Christmas trees, developed in Germany, were lit with candles attached to the branches. Modern day incandescent bulbs have now replaced candles, and are laid out on both interior and exterior surfaces for a festive glimmer.

When it comes to the electric outdoor Christmas lighting craze, the tradition is purely American and has only in recent years spread to other countries. We seem to be fascinated with installing gorgeous outdoor Christmas lighting on our homes, businesses, stores and any other facilities near a power source! Outdoor Christmas lighting is such a popular tradition that stores compete with each other every year for the cheapest prices, making it convenient and relatively inexpensive for consumers!

The more experience you have had with outdoor Christmas lighting, the more you probably know about safety and decorative tips. Decorating the exterior of your home and your landscaping takes time and effort, but the end result is definitely something to be proud of! Here are the basic guidelines that anyone dabbling with outdoor Christmas lighting should know:

  • Always use extension cords and lights that are specifically made to withstand exterior conditions! Every product’s label should contain an indication of indoor or outdoor usage.
  • Always use a UL-approved adapter plug for three-pronged male plugs that need to fit into a two-prong outlet.
  • Spotlights are a great idea for illuminating Christmas decorations! Just use an approved lamp holder to contain the bulb. Spotlights meant for this purpose will have a gasket for sealing the bulb in the socket, and maybe even metal or plastic prongs to hold it securely to the ground.
  • Mini lights are less of a fire hazard than large C-7 or C-9 bulbs.
  • Most of the time with outdoor Christmas lighting, you’ll be connecting a few strings together. Wrap electrical tape around any connections.

And remember to enjoy the season! Outdoor Christmas lighting is simply a technical and engineered representation of the Christmas spirit. Along with the glow emanating from your front yard, remember to smile and put a glow in someone’s heart!


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