Your choices with outdoor lights used to be quite limited. Whichever set of exterior Christmas lights you chose, it would involve someone climbing a ladder and manually hanging string lights.
Then along came LED technology and everything changed!
Fortunately, you now have an array of different options from traditional can lights to smart LED Christmas lights.
In this Christmas lights buying guide, we cover seven tips for buying the right set of lights for your home.
The tips apply wherever you are in the U.S. or Canada and whatever size your property – and not just for this year but for every year!
1. Do your homework on Christmas light types
Like all purchasing decisions, buying the right Christmas lights for the exterior of your home starts with a little research.
Exterior home light choices have become far more varied in recent years – but this also makes it more confusing for homeowners.
Your basic choice will come down to whether to use the latest smart LED (light-emitting diode) technology or go with the more traditional can (incandescent) string lights for your outdoor Christmas display.
This will depend on several important factors such as:
Do your homework and compare LEDs and can lights in each of the key areas.
Decide which are the key elements for you and your family and then start investigating the Christmas light types that best tick the boxes for you.
2. Save yourself a lot of time, effort, and risk
If you’re like most homeowners, you have to scale a ladder and manually hang string lights each year – and then take them down in the icy cold of January.
The time and effort involved – not to mention the risks involved in accessing the roof area in icy conditions – can be put to one side with smart LED lights.
Instead of braving the cold and the heights, permanent LED Christmas lights allow you to sit back on your sofa, access a cloud-based controller app, and program the colors and patterns you want from the comfort of your living room.
LED lights can do things you never believed – with no effort, no danger, and no more hanging lights ever again!
When next Christmas comes around, your LED lights are already fixed in place and you repeat the process. All you need to do is to activate your chosen Christmas pattern, which can be changed as often as you like.
If, after all this, you still decide to stick with string lights make sure that you:
Remember, by choosing a smart LED lighting system through Gemstone Lights, you do not need to worry about any of these concerns!
3. Pick flexible Christmas light colors to capture the festive mood
Christmas is all about color and sparkle… reds, greens, whites, golds, silvers, and more.
So, let’s say you go for a classic soft white Christmas light look. It suits the wintry feel and you like it at first. Your lights could be up for two months or more and, eventually, the white look becomes a little boring – and you wish you’d added some reds and greens to the display.
With can lights, it’s too late.
However, a smart Christmas lighting system allows you to change the colors up as often as you like. They’re flexible.
Just use the controller app to program different colors – using either one of the hundreds of preset patterns or create your own.
You can even change the hue of the white color from a warmer white to an icier bluey white or vice versa.
The colorful and warm LED Christmas light options will change the look and feel of your home exterior instantly, bringing drama, fun, and festivity to it.
Christmas is about children so why not get yours to choose the colors themselves? They’ll love having a play with the amazing array of colors available with smart LED systems.
4. Make your Christmas light dance
Can your Christmas lights dance?
With the array of preset animated Christmas patterns available on LED systems, chasing pattern options are plentiful and you can really make your exterior lights appear to dance.
Again, the controller app allows you to change it up with almost limitless customization options – from timeless static patterns to wild, flashing, rotating, mesmerizing light displays.
There’s no easier way to catch the attention of passersby at Christmas time than having the best light show on the street.
5. Choose Christmas lights that save the most energy – and money
With any set of Christmas lights, there are two main cost considerations: installation costs and ongoing running costs.
When you research LED lighting systems you will find that the initial investment in setting the system up is higher than with can lights.
Sometimes, that puts homeowners off. They go outside, find the ladder, and start hanging lights.
However, there are a few features of high-quality LED systems that pay you back over and over again, year after year:
Traditional Christmas lighting systems cannot offer these energy-saving and cost-saving features.
So, while they may be cheaper to install, they’re more expensive to run and usually result in higher monthly electricity bills – especially for larger properties.
You will also need to replace can light bulbs far more often. They end up costing you time and effort, as well as money, over the years.
6. Choose lights that will withstand the climate
Incandescent lights may be designed for inside or outside the home.
Those intended for exterior use must be able to withstand the weather conditions we get here in North America – from sub-tropical storms of the south to the heavy snowfall we get in the north.
This is not a “given” with lights branded as “outdoor lights”.
Check that the lights you choose are able to withstand whatever nature throws at them. Water, especially, can ruin your Christmas light display and, if you live by the coast, salt can play a part in causing corrosion.
Look for dealers that offer weather-resistant lighting and a full warranty. Your Christmas lights should have a waterproof rating and a UL rating suitable for your needs.
LED Christmas Lights from Gemstone Lights are weather-proof even for the cold, icy, and wet conditions we experience. They fit into weatherproof and rust-proof aluminum tracks that run around the soffit and fascia of your property.
All lights are backed by certification from Electrical Testing Labs (ETL) and the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) certification.
7. Get the right contractors to install your lights
If you decide on a smart LED system, make sure you get it installed professionally.
With such leading-edge lighting technology, you don’t want to take any chances. Experienced installation professionals will be able to install the system so that:
Safety is the key concern – a poorly installed lighting system can be hazardous to you and your family.
With a Gemstone Lights system, an authorized dealer will look after the entire process from start to finish. This includes:
Quote and schedule
Ready to switch on!
Ready to get started with a smart LED Christmas light system?
A Gemstone Lights LED system can be used season after season for occasions other than Christmas – Halloween, Valentine’s, and any other occasion you wish to mark – but there is no better time of year to upgrade.
Christmas is the perfect excuse to take the plunge. The array of patterns, colors, and animations will start your new system off with a flourish.
Hopefully, this Christmas lights buying guide has helped you decide.
You can start the process right now by finding an Authorized Dealer in your area.
Simply input your zip code or postal code and choose the most suitable Gemstone Lights authorized dealer across North America, who will provide a quote and arrange your installation.
Start with a free no-obligation quote from a Gemstone Lights Authorized Dealer.