It’s the most wonderful time of the year and there’s no better way to get into the holiday spirit than with beautiful decorations and light displays. There’s something about hundreds or in some cases thousands of twinkling lights brightening up the cold, dark night.
Every year, decorating is one of the top items on holiday to-do-lists. And while no holiday is complete without this popular tradition, no one likes the dreaded energy bill spike that comes after the holiday fun is over.
Creating a magical light display that is both beautiful and energy efficient can be done and it’s easier than you think. We’ve compiled a few energy-saving tips to help you save on your energy bill while still being in the holiday spirit!
Use LED lights
LED lights are much more energy efficient, environmentally friendly and shine brighter than incandescent lights. According to the Department of Energy, LEDs last longer and consume 70 percent less energy than conventional incandescent light strands. It only costs $0.27 to light a 6-foot tree for 12 hours a day for 40 days with LEDs compared to $10 for incandescent lights.
LED lights also come in a variety of colors and are much safer because they produce very little heat.
Invest in timers
Now that you’ve set up your holiday LED light display, use a timer to turn it on and off. Putting your light display on a timer will save money and electricity because you are not paying for electricity that no one is using. Turn it off during the day and late night when no one is admiring it.
Plug into power strips
Plug lights and other electronics into a power strip. This makes it easier to turn on and off your decorations at once if you aren’t using a timer.
Keep other lights off
Turn off other lights when the tree is lit. Your holiday lights may be bright enough on their own. This will help you save money on your electricity bill.
STAY SAFE THIS HOLIDAY SEASON
Before you deck the halls with boughs of holly and energy efficiency lights, run through our holiday lights safety checklist. These tips will help keep your holidays safe, merry and bright.
- Cover up with outlet safety caps
Cover the ends of each string of lights with a safety cap to prevent little elves from sticking their fingers inside. This will also seal lights off from any water damage.
- Beware of overhead power lines
When decorating outside, keep ladders and decorations away from overhead power lines. Give yourself at least 10 feet of space for safety and ensure the ladder is securely placed on the ground before climbing.
- Water your tree
If you choose to have a real tree, be sure to keep it well hydrated. Watering it every day keeps your tree fresh, plus dry Christmas trees are a serious fire hazard.
- Use properly marked extension cords
Did you know that extension cords are specifically marked for indoor or outdoor use? They are not interchangeable. Make sure you have the right cords for the right location.
- Check smoke alarms
Make sure your smoke alarms are in working order. Batteries should be replaced at least once a year and alarms should be tested once a month. Also, take this time to check your carbon monoxide alarms.
- Inspect all decorations
Inspect all strands, decorations and extension cords for damage before using. Replace any lights with frayed wires, broken sockets, and loose connections.
- Use the right ladders
Use wooden or fiberglass ladders when decorating outdoors. Metal ladders conduct electricity and could be hazardous.
For additional energy-saving and holiday safety tips, visit us at cpsenergy.com.