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Old 11-10-2008, 12:33 PM
213 posts, read 570,669 times
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I am part of a committee organizing holiday festivities for my village. Can anyone tell me how many string light sets can be linked together before popping a fuse?
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Old 11-10-2008, 02:17 PM
Location: Pompey, NY
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Depends on what lights you plan on using. It varies accoording to how many lights are on each string, and what type of lights, IE C6, C9 or mini.
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Old 11-10-2008, 02:37 PM
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And most of the boxes will tell you how many can be strung together.
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Old 11-10-2008, 02:40 PM
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PLEASE tell them to NOT put stuff up until AFTER Thanksgiving? The Christmas creep is starting to get offensive.
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Old 11-10-2008, 04:54 PM
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Most boxes will say 2 or 3 strings. A lot of it depends on what the outlet is wired for as well.
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Old 11-10-2008, 05:00 PM
Location: Eastern Washington
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Most "regular" outlets are good for 15 amps. That will run a *lot* of Christmas lights. The newer light strings have a fuse in the plug itself that limits you to about 2 or 3 strings.

A heavier-duty 20A plug is required by code in some places, it has to be wired in with 12 gauge instead of 14 gauge wire, and is good for 20 amps, but the fuses in the light string itself still limit how many you can string together.
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Old 11-10-2008, 11:22 PM
Location: Mishawaka, IN
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It depends on the type of lights you use as well. C9 bulbs draw around 6-7 watts apiece. By contrast, miniature lights draw around 20-25 watts for a 50 light strand. 200 C9 bulbs would pretty well load a basic 15 amp circuit and you don't necessarily want to take a circuit to its limit.

As mentioned, you're generally limited in the number of light sets you can string together because of the fuses involved as well as the thin wire that's used in them. Most icicle light sets have 300 lights over 18-20 feet and it's usually recommended you connect no more than 3 together. On the other hand, I saw a set of 100 mini lights with a 28' lighted length that said you could connect up to 5 sets.

LED lights draw less power and you can generally connect a lot more of them together. I saw one set of Sylvania "C6 teardrop" lights with a lighted length of 16 feet that said you could connect up to 43 sets together. That would be almost 700 feet of lights. The box said one 50 light set used around 5 watts which comes out to around 215 watts for all 43 sets. That's far less than is available on a typical 15 amp circuit.

LED lights are more expensive but on the other hand, are supposed to last longer so they should require less maintenance. At least hypothetically.
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Old 11-11-2008, 09:06 PM
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Majority of the manufactuers recommend 3 on the boxes. If you have them out of the box, I would not put more than 3 together.
I have been thinking of trying the LED lights on my Christmas tree this year, but its still open for discussion. I wish I decorated my slew of trees that I use to do. That way I could pick and choose from there.
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Old 11-11-2008, 10:28 PM
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All the light I use say for safety ;not more than two strings can strung together.That is both minature and C-9 strings I have ;according to instructions. That doesn't mean that the same cord can not be used to strin other lights off the same 110v outlet.I am not going to test their recommendations. This I think is part of the UL certification.
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Old 11-12-2008, 12:22 PM
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
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Just use LED. You will save money in the long run becuase they do not use as much power. They also do not burn out as fast. I cannot imagine that you need more than 43 strings of lights.
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