The holidays always fill me with a true sense of joy, ebullient cheer that seems to overflow into every aspect of my life. My favorite part of any holiday – regardless of season – is decorating with light. With the advent of daily improvements in the realm of LEDs, we combine beauty with efficiency into the pinnacle of seasonal glee – glowing points of light we can share with the world, expressing our passion, our joy, and creating a sense of warmth for all who pass by. This is a tradition that isn’t just about our homes, but businesses and public spaces have become canvases for art formed with technology that is fleeting and yet timelessly beautiful.
The magic of Christmas lights is the sensation of wonder and joy they inspire in everyone, regardless of age. While beautiful, they are no longer as fragile, delicate – or dangerous – as they once were.
We even once strung our trees with bulbs full of methylene chloride – a poison that penetrates the body if it is inhaled, swallowed, or spilled on the skin. The chemicals inside convert to carbon monoxide, and are toxic in general but especially so when direct body contact is made. Carbon monoxide poisoning creates symptoms like nausea, vomiting, headache, drowsiness, coma, seizures, heart attack, and even death. Bubble lights, frequently in use from 1950-1970, are a gorgeous and nostalgic reminder of how beauty is often dangerous.
In this day and age, we can run down to any local box store and pick up strings of low-energy, low heat-emitting LED bulbs for a slightly higher out of pocket cost that has the power to create beautiful art. Do any basic internet search for Christmas lights and you will get a plethora of beautiful images, similar to these:
These light installations are more like art created with light, and could have been constructed with something simple like colored LED string lights. With a little time, some ingenuity, and a pinch of engineering, you too could turn off-the-shelf lighting into works of art for your home or office.
Because of their low wattage and high efficiency, many, many strings of strings of LED bulbs can be connected together (depending on their specific requirements, from 30-67), which means lights can be an endless, seamless line run from one cord for a home.
While you don’t necessarily want or need to create a massive lighting display, using simple LED ropes of colored lights – or even warm white ones – can create masterpieces.
I love LEDs, I love Christmas, and I love snow. What do you get when you put them all together?
You might be asking yourself – why the huge pressure for LED light bulbs? They cost more – and what difference does it make if they last twenty years, we only pull these lights out for Christmas? Consider this – 2014 Holiday Christmas LEDs are rated for up to 90% better efficiency than traditional incandescent light bulbs. Since the surface temperature of an LED bulb will never heat to over 100 degrees, their fire risk is significantly lower as well. Not only that, but since they are phosphorescent light emitters, they do not produce dangerous radiation such as UV and IR.
Regardless of anything else, know that your friends at Swartz Electric wish nothing but the best for you and yours. Remember to be safe with ladders, electricity, parties, and each other!
Swartz Electric – Your Colorado Springs Electrician performs electrical work throughout Colorado Springs, Monument, Black Forest, Fountain, Falcon, Woodland Park, and everywhere in between. We are the electricians in Colorado Springs to solve your electrical problems and meet your electrical requirements.
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This is an original article written by Mai Bjorklund for Swartz Electric. This article may not be copied whole or in part without the express permission of Swartz Electric, LLC.
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