Nothing says “the holidays” like Christmas lights. Hanging them yourself is easy and inexpensive. All you need are the right lights, some basic tools and supplies, and about one to two hours. Here’s exactly what you’ll need for this beginner’s level project.
- TOOLS & MATERIALS
- Tape Measure
- Christmas Lights
- Timers & Controllers
- Christmas Light Clips
- Adhesive Hooks
- Light Hanging Pole
- Exterior Extension Cord
Measure and prepare. Start by measuring your home’s exterior where you’d like to hang the lights. This will help determine how much lighting you’ll need, as well as the number of clips to install. Next, identify your power sources and measure how much cord you’ll need to reach the closest outlet.
Select lights. After measuring, you’ll need to select the right lights for your home. String lights are typically the best option, and readily available in a variety of stores. When purchasing your lights, it’s important to keep wattage in mind to prevent overloading your circuit and blowing a fuse.
To calculate the wattage of any string light, multiply the wattage of whatever bulb you choose by the number of sockets in the string. Then, divide the total watts by 120. This will provide you with the total amperage of the light string. Most household circuits are 15 or 20 amps. Since circuits should never exceed 80% of their maximum wattage capacity, it’s best to limit a single outlet to three or four light strings.
Design layout. Now that you have your lights, it’s time to design a layout. Decide which lights you’d like in each location, then put them in place before making any connections. Test your lights as you go to ensure all of them work.
Connect clips and lights. Find the clips best suited for each installation area. Attach them to your light strings, and begin securing your lights one string at a time.
Once you’re happy with the layout and your lights are clipped securely, plug them in, step back, and enjoy your holiday display.