Going green for Christmas with LED's
admin Tue, 12/09/2008 - 23:57
For the first time in 6 years we have a Christmas tree, and it's a real one at that. The last 2 years or so we have done a small fake tree that was only 3 feet high or so, and it usually got relegated to a corner in section of the house not really used. This year we decided to actually get a real tree, and it is actually located in a prominent place, the living room.
Since this is our first real tree that we have had to acquire a few things such as a tree stand and lights. Instead of the normal lights we choose to purchase some LED lights. I think that they look great, and they use less energy than the mini-lights, and even less energy than the standard bulbs of old. LED stands for Light emitting diode.
A standard light bulb produces light by passing a current through a filament, the filament gets excited and heats up and glows, producing heat and light. LED's produce light in a different manner, electroluminescence. The process that LED's use to generate light uses far less energy, and they should last at least 5 times longer than a standard bulb.
We are using 4 strands of LED lights and all four strands should use less energy together than a single strand of mini-lights, which is cool. I did some looking around on the internet, and it seems that the LED light strands are pretty expensive. We found a great deal on the light strands at Sam's Club and Wal-mart.
We purchased a few strands like the ones to the right. The lights are multi-colored, but also come in white. The white LED lights are bright white, and not "yellow" white, sometimes called warm white. The box says that the strand can save 80% on energy costs. They are also UL rated, and energy star approved (dont see that very often on Christmas lights). They were easy to use, and I think that they look great. They come in various sizes, and all kinds shapes. I am sure that we will pick up some more in the future.
The only downside to them, is I have not figured out how to get them to blink. All of the strands that we have a "solid", and are always on. I can not figure out how to make them turn into a "blinking strand". Oh well minor detail. So if you are looking to brighten up your Christmas tree in a eco-friendly way, check out some LED lights.