How to Make Custom-Length Christmas Lights

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Christmas light strand lengths can be customized.
Christmas light strand lengths can be customized. (Image: christmas lights image by Cindy Haggerty from Fotolia.com)

Christmas lights are often manufactured in prefabricated lengths such as 25 feet or 30 feet. Unfortunately, most home exterior facades do not accommodate straight lines, and homeowners are often left short or with a surplus of light strands. Christmas light strand lengths can be customized to fit a particular home and present a specific decoration. The process to customize Christmas lights is straightforward and can be done by a novice.

Things You'll Need

  • Wire cutter
  • Wire stripper
  • Electrical tape
  • Shrink tape
  • Heat gun

Buy preassembled Christmas lights. Purchase prefabricated Christmas lights that are made from the same manufacturer and are the same type in a home improvement or home supply store.

Calculate the length of the lights you will need. For instance, if the Christmas lights stretch to 25 feet and you need to cover 35 feet, you will need two 25-foot light strands.

Cut a portion of one strand of lights to the length you need to add. Using the above example, you will need 10 feet. Cut 10 feet from one strand with wire cutters. Then cut the AC plug off the end of the other strand.

Strip the ends of both strands with a wire stripper to expose the wires. Braid the ends together by intertwining them. Wrap each braid separately with electrical tape. Plug in the lengthened strand to ensure it is properly working.

Unplug the lights. Wrap shrink tape over the juncture of the lights. Shrink the shrink tape with a heat gun.

Tips & Warnings

  • If left with a surplus in lights, you may simply cut the excess and braid the end to a plug. Make sure to leave some wire at the end of the plug to intertwine with the rest of the strand.

References

  • "Complete Wiring (Stanley Complete)"; Stanley; 2008
  • "Fast, Fun & Easy Christmas Decorations: Festive Fabric Keepsakes to Create & Embellish"; Linda Johansen; 2006
  • "Let There Be Lights!: A Beginner's Guide to Outdoor Christmas Decorating"; Christopher Donnells; 2008
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