One of the best things about the holiday season is the warm and cozy feeling that seems to charge the air during the winter months. Although this might be our bias talking, we at 1000Bulbs.com like to think those joyful feelings are somewhat attributed to holiday lighting setting the mood. In some households, illuminating the neighborhood by putting up Christmas lights has become a tradition. However, using traditional incandescent Christmas lights can not only have an impact on your wallet, but on the environment as well. So, before you buy more light strings and power up that holiday display you have planned, here are some of the benefits of switching to LED (light-emitting diode) Christmas lights.
Unless they’re the equivalent of a modern-day Ebenezer Scrooge, it’s safe to say that most people find Christmas light displays to be delightful. Although holiday lights are lovely to look at, they can lead to excessive amounts of wasted energy, not to mention a hefty bill in the mail. While it’s impossible to stay 100 percent green, using LED Christmas lights is a reasonable alternative.
Unlike incandescent lights, LEDs have no filament to burn out, which is why they are able to last for up to 40 holiday seasons, whereas incandescent bulbs have the potential to burn out after one. LED lights also consume less wattage and only burn about 10 percent of the energy that incandescent lights do. According to Energy.gov, the cost of lighting a 6-foot tree with incandescent bulbs for 12 hours a day for 40 days, is roughly $10.00. Using LED mini lights for the same period of time only costs $0.82. The Department of Energy estimates that Christmas lights use just as much electricity as half a million homes do in a month. If every household switched to LED lighting, the DOE also says that U.S. households could save over $400 million in electricity costs.
Not only do LED Christmas lights use less energy than their incandescent counterparts, but they are also much safer. Typically made of glass, incandescent Christmas lights are much more likely to shatter, increasing the risk of house fires. LED light strings, like wide angle LED mini lights, use epoxy lenses, or plastic, and are much sturdier and resistant to breakage. Again, because they have no filament to produce heat, LED bulbs are cool to the touch and reduce the risk of burns or combustion. Consuming lower amounts of energy also makes LED Christmas lights better for the environment. This is why large Christmas displays around the world, such as the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree in New York City, use LED lighting. By switching to LEDs, the iconic tree has decreased daily energy consumption from 3,510 kWh per day to 1,297 kWh per day.
We know how easy it is to accidentally leave the lights on when you don’t really need them. To reduce your energy consumption even further, use automatic timers for both indoor and outdoor holiday lights. Set timers to turn lights on when it gets dark and off during a reasonable hour later that night. Having the ability to program your Christmas lights will eliminate the stress of wondering whether or not you forgot to turn them off before you left the house. Before plugging in and programming, make sure the timer is capable of handling the combined wattage of your lights. According to Energy.gov, keeping light displays on for less than eight hours per night will help you keep your energy costs low. If you don’t have a timer, being as frugal as possible with the number of hours your lights are on will make all the difference.