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10 Things You Should Know About LED Christmas Lights

You're probably thinking about what to give those on your holiday gift lists. But have you thought about upgrading your home's holiday light display? Here are 10 things you should know about LED Christmas lights.

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The Cost Factorpogonici/Shutterstock

The Cost Factor

While LED Christmas lights will cost you more money upfront, you'll save money in the long run. You can pay $13.65 per month to decorate your rooftop with those old incandescent lights, or you can pay 22 cents with LED lights (prices estimated by Xcel Energy Colorado). And LEDs cost more to produce because components are often assembled by hand, they need conducting material to dissipate heat and to get a natural white glow they are often coated with yellow phosphor.

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Things You Should Know About LED Christmas Lights

Do you know these things about LED Christmas lights?

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Cool to the TouchTierneyMJ/Shutterstock

Cool to the Touch

If you have children or pets and are concerned about safety around holiday decorations, LEDs are a good choice because they produce next to no heat. And that means they're always cool to the touch.

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The Weather FactorJo Ann Snover/Shutterstock

The Weather Factor

LED christmas lights have no problem coming on and working in cold temperatures. And in fact, LEDs get more efficient as the outdoor temperature gets lower.

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They're DurableArina P Habich/Shutterstock

They're Durable

LED Christmas lights get high marks when it comes to durability. In tests, LED bulbs didn't burn out after over 4,000 hours, while standard light-string bulbs burned out at a rate of one to two per strand before half that time.

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More Lights, Fewer OutletsYou Touch Pix of EuToch/Shutterstock

More Lights, Fewer Outlets

Typically, you can connect eight to 10 times more mini LED light strings together end to end while only using one electrical outlet. With traditional Christmas mini lights, you can only connect four to five sets, end to end. LED mini light strings allow you to connect 40 to 50 together, depending on the light count.

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Yes, You Can Replace Single BulbsFamily Handyman

Yes, You Can Replace Single Bulbs

Just like classic incandescent Christmas lights, LED Christmas lights can fail, either one light at a time or an entire string. And single replacement bulbs are available for many LED string light bulbs.

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Blue LED Christmas Lights Can Make You SickYouproduction/Shutterstock

Blue LED Christmas Lights Can Make You Sick

Did you know that the blue light from LED Christmas lights (along with electronics such as tablets, smartphones and laptops) can mess with your circadian rhythm and result in loss of sleep, which in turn can lead to obesity, diabetes and depression? In the short-term, some people feel nauseous and get headaches when exposed to blue LED Christmas lights, so you might not want to do an all-blue Christmas tree!

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Big Bulbs vs. Small BulbsSofiaworld/Shutterstock

Big Bulbs vs. Small Bulbs

While mini lights have been the most popular Christmas light decorations for the past 10 years or so, those "old-fashioned" big colored bulbs are making a comeback. The best part? Those big bulbs are available as LEDs.

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Decorating Done RightVAlek Studio/Shutterstock

Decorating Done Right

When decorating with LED Christmas lights outside, it's best to string trees in the evening with the light strands plugged in so you can see the effect as you go. When decorating evergreen trees, use bigger bulbs. Smaller bulbs look best on deciduous trees.

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Warm White or Cool White?Anteromite/Shutterstock

Warm White or Cool White?

Popular LED Christmas lights are available with warm white light or cool white light. Warm white LED lights give off a soft glow that is comparable with traditional lights and are a good choice for using indoors on Christmas trees.  And cool white LED lights can be used to achieve a more snow-white tone and are often used outdoors.

Rachel Brougham
Writer and editor with a background in news writing, editorial and column writing and content marketing.