Hopefully by now you’ve seen the news about the switch that Williams has made from traditional incandescent holiday lights to LED lights (if not, read it here). Williams will be saving a substantial amount of electricity, money, and emissions as a result of the switch. While Williams purchased commercial grade LED lights, residential LED Christmas lights are commonly available, both locally and on-line (check local hardware stores, grocery stores, and pharmacies). Making the change is a great way to reduce your electricity use during the holidays. LED holiday lights use as little as 10% of the electricity that incandescent strands do. A typical incandescent strand with 50 mini bulbs uses 25 watts, while an equivalent LED strand uses between 2-4 watts. If you have ten strands of 50 lights, and leave them on for four hours a day for the entire month of December, you would save 27 kilowatt hours of electricity by switching to LEDs. If you usually leave your lights on for longer than that, you’d save even more electricity. Depending on how long you leave the lights on, the new LED lights should pay for themselves through electricity savings in 2-3 years.
If you do have some old, burnt out holiday lights, there’s a program currently available through HolidayLEDs.com (an LED retailer) for recycling old strands of incandescent lights. The program only runs through December 20th, so visit this website soon for more information.