Safe and Green Ways to Reuse Christmas Lights
Call it tradition, but even the humblest of homes need a little glitter and lights to make them sparkle during the Christmas season. Whether you already have a budget or you are still scrimping to buy new Christmas decors, one practical thing you can do is to reuse old holiday adornments such as Christmas lights.
Year after year, Christian families around the world do their very best to ready their homes for Christmas, and that really costs a lot. This year, why not try giving your old Christmas lights a new lease on life? It will not only save you money, you are also helping the planet reduce junks being tossed into the landfills. Do you know that these lights will never naturally break down?
Armed with these motivations, buckle up and discover some ways to save precious bucks and the environment. Here are a few ideas for you:
Get Them Fixed for the Look
When planning to reuse the lights, it is always best to start early to have enough time for repairs and replacements, and to make sure your home is all aglow during the season. Ensure safety with these steps:
• Take out those old lights and sort. Which ones are working and which are not? Test those lights that are working before installing them.
• Heed manufacturer’s safety instructions and warnings. These instructions are meant to keep you and your home safe, so do not ignore them. Avoid making alterations that can be risky. Make sure that your old lights aren’t part of a product recall.
• Inspect the the strands. Pay attentions to lamp holders, leads as well as the cords and plugs for frayed ends, cracks and loose connections. Set aside those that lack insulated pins as they do not meet safety requirements.
• Replace defective bulbs. If a strand has some defective bulbs, replacing those with energy-efficient LED (light-emitting diode) lights is an excellent decision. They are eco-friendly using 90 percent less energy, much more durable and are safer to use.
• Set aside more heavily damaged strands. Do not use them until these are properly repaired by an electrician.
• Repurpose what can’t be repaired. If you are using one of those modern lights that have fuses to avoid sparks and accidents, you are advised to ditch them. If you want to save them from the landfill, repurpose them.
Remember, defective lights can start a fire and cause damage to life and property. You don’t want them scorching your home to ashes and putting your family and neighborhood in danger. Safety is best ensured with the help of a licensed electrical contractor.
What to Do with Unsafe Lights
Ditching those old strings of lights to the landfill must be your last option. There are easier, but green ways to deal with them. Consider the following:
• The recycling facilities in your area can help. If you live in or near College Station TX, you’re in luck because there are several facilities there. You can start by contacting the closest ones to where you live and finding out what they recycle. If you find the right facility, ask them the details you want to know.
• Are there retailers in the area who do holiday light exchanges? This is something that a number of home depots and other retailers do just before the season. You can ask around or find out from the local harware store you patronize if they are into light exchanges.
• Look for e-commerce companies that are into reutilizing lights. One good tip is to check out online stores selling Holiday LEDs being aggressively promoted these days. If you find one, it usually entails shipping out your old lights (at your cost) to them.
Repurposing your Old Christmas Lights
Do you love crafting? If you do, another green way is to use your old and busted lights to make decorative and functional items you can use around the house or as gifts. Here are a few easy-to-do projects for you.
• Transform them into more Christmas decors. There is a plethora of ideas you can gather from the Internet and craft books. Some are really quite easy to make. For instance, you can spray gold or silver paint to a bunch of small light bulbs then put them in glass jars and baskets. You can also add them to a tray of fruits, veggies and flowers to make inexpensive, unique and sparkly table centerpieces perking the holiday spirit around your home.
• Grow plants in them. Find a style to hang a few bigger bulbs on a commercial chain imaginatively modified to make a bulb bunting. You can fill it up with water and use them as a vase for small wildflowers. You can also use them as small planters or terrariums. With a card, some glittery and Christmassy supplies, use them as place cards on your Christmas table that your guests can take home as gifts or tokens.
• Hang them up in the nursery. Steal the idea of hot air balloons. Using a decoupage, wrap the burnt-out bulbs with petal-shaped fabric cut according to the bulb’s dimensions. Using a string, add a loop at the top so it can be hung. Glue four more strings around the bulb all the way down to the base. Make stiffened (with a glue) string to connect the base to a basket (painted caps make good substitute). Make it more whimsical with a small polymer animal glued to the inside of the cap like a passenger.
If a bright abode is your idea of a happy home, learn to reuse your Christmas lights not only for the next Christmas, but for other holidays or all year long. Let your creativity flow as you use those lights to light up your family room, as you use it in a canvas art or other projects.
If you decide to reuse them as lights, make sure you will not compromise your safety. It is smart to call in a professional electrician not only to check your Christmas lights, but also to install them. If you live in College StationTX, EcoZapp is right here to help you. What’s great about this company is the fact that they can make your home all bright and ready for Christmas while making your home pest-free too.