Post # 1
For Christmas 2013 (our first married Christmas) we got an awesome tree. Or so we thought. Artificial 8-ft pre-lit tree. Anyway, the day we first set it up, one of the sections wasn’t lighting up. Bummer. Then a few weeks later, another section went dim. After that, another section. So the tree was a MESS – all kinds of different strings of lights mixed and matched with the non-working bulbs already on the tree…ugh!
This Christmas (I know…I’m a LONG way off) I don’t want to have to deal with it! We can’t afford another tree, or even a live one (I prefer artificial because of little nieces and nephews running around, and minor allergies). There is NO WAY I see myself being able to find out if ONE bulb on the tree is causing the problems. I think it has just been handled too roughly in the past so there are some shorts that cause it to not light up.
I’m THIS close to cutting all the wires and taking all the lights off the tree. But then I think of all the strings of lights I’ll need to buy and how expensive they are (we’re sooo low budget ha) and I was wondering…
How necessary do you think lights are on a tree? Have you ever decorated without them or seen anyone else do it?
Post # 2
My favorite part of the tree is the lights- I love turning off all the other lights in the apartment and just having the tree on so this would be a no go for me. If I were in this situation and couldn’t afford new lights I would probably look for rummage sales that advertise Christmas decorations.
That being said, if I was at a friend’s house and saw the tree didn’t have lights on it I wouldn’t really think much of it.
Post # 3
TogetherThroughLife: Can you bring it back? If the lights went out on my prelit tree I’d be bringing it back and getting a new one!
Post # 4
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
TogetherThroughLife: Do you have an Old Time Pottery or Harbor Frieght hearby? In late November or early December they stock Christmas lights for around $8 per 100 feet. The closer it gets to Christmas, the more they mark them down. I usually stock up when they mark them down to $2-4 per strand. Three strands are plenty for our 8 foot tree.
Post # 5
TogetherThroughLife: I would hate having a tree without lights. It’s that glow that I love– turning off everything else but the tree when we are downstairs watching a movie- and I’ve been known to even have the lights on during the day sometimes since the tree doesn’t stay up for more than a month, if that. I also have a six year old– so while I always have a tree (live one) even when lived alone with no kids, there’s no way I wouldn’t have a lit tree for my son’s sake.
Post # 6
A Christmas tree without lights! What kind of madness is this!
Post # 7
TogetherThroughLife: I couldn’t have a Christmas tree without lights. There are two kinds of light strings- one where the whole thing goes out of one bulb is dead or not making contact; the other where the rest of the lights stay on.
There is a little gadget you can buy at the dollar store to test the bulbs. I would just go along the string making sure each bulb is tested and making good contact when you reinsert it. Do it sometime before you actually want to put the tree up so you don’t feel frazzled.
If you test all the bulbs and they are ok, then you may indeed have a broken wire.
Post # 8
TogetherThroughLife: a few years ago, we had a pre-lit tree that we always added extra lights to – strings of coloured ones to go with the white ones. One day while I was at work I asked FH to take the lights off and put the tree away…I came home and he had un-lit our pre-lit tree…somehow he didn’t realize the white ones weren’t supposed to come off. It ruined the tree. The way they had the lights on there, when he pulled them all off the tree looked like CRAP, even when we put on our own lights.
Our new tree has a burned out string, it was actually really really easy to spot – the bulb is black. I would take a look and try and fix it before you remove the lights.
Post # 9
TogetherThroughLife: How come you didn’t return the tree when you realized the lights were faulty? I love lights! They are super cheap on Black Friday.
Post # 10
NewfieBullet: I wish! We bought the very last tree left in a store (it was the dispay tree) and they didn’t even have a box for it. They just threw it in our trunk. Grrr. And that was 2012. 🙁
beachbride1216: That sounds SUPER cheap. Are they good quality lights? I’ve never heard of either store so I’m assuming they aren’t in my area.
julies1949: We searched for hours and hours during the Christmas season for a broken bulb, to no avail. I really think something is wrong with the wiring! So frustrating!
MsGinkgo: We tried to look for a burned out bulb but couldn’t find one! I’m sorry to hear your tree looked so bad when he removed the light strings! Ours is really fluffy and full, so I’m hoping we wouldn’t have that problem but now you made me nervous. 😉 ha!
Birdi: I love lights too! Who doesn’t?! We bought the tree in late december 2012 (or was it jan 2013…) anyway, it was in storage til nov. 2013 when we put it up. we didn’t even think to test it when we first bought it. it was the display tree – last one left – so no returns! lame!
Post # 11
TogetherThroughLife: If worse comes to worst, you can simply take off the old lights and add new ones.
Post # 12
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
TogetherThroughLife: There are a bunch of Harbor Freights in Kentucky and most likely when you mention wanting to go there your SO will be delighted because it’s a tool outlet. But they only stock Christmas lights during the holiday season.
I don’t see any Old Time Pottery in your area though. Big Lots may be another option and honestly the prices at Walmart aren’t that bad either.
Your issue with the pre-lit bulbs going out is the exact reason why we bought a plain unlit artifical tree.
Post # 13
If there is a freecycle chapter in your area, someone is always gifting Christmas lights around The holidays. Google to see if there’s a group near you and read carefully their group rules, then post a request and see if anyone is cleaning out a closet or moving and wanting to get rid of some lights.
Post # 14
julies1949: I think that’s what I might do! And maybe this spring or summer…so that I don’t have to do it around Christmastime. 🙂
beachbride1216: Ha…I wish we had an unlit tree. Hindsight is 20/20. 😉 Thanks for checking on those store locations for me! I also found these LED strings on Amazon and I really like them. I know 10 meters is about 30 feet but I’m not sure how many of these strands I’d need for an 8 ft. tree…
Post # 15
TogetherThroughLife: There are all sorts of guidelines
How many strands do I need? A good rule of thumb is 100 lights for every foot-and-a-half of tree. However, if you love lights, you may want to double or even triple that amount.
for every 3 feet of height use 10 meters of lights