How to Change the Fuse in Your Christmas Lights in 5 Easy Steps

how to change fuse in christmas

Christmas is a time for family, friends, and fun. It’s also a time for lights; lots and lots of lights. Just like other light lovers, you probably have dozens of strings of Christmas lights that need to be plugged in every year, and quite unfortunately, every now and then, a string will go out.

Changing the fuse in your Christmas lights is easy and only takes a few minutes, as you will see in this article. Also, read through to the end to find some precautions to make your lights last longer.

Items Needed to Change the Fuse in Your Christmas Lights 

Small Flathead Screwdriver

This will be used to open the fuse door. Any flathead metal, such as a kitchen knife or pocket knife, will also come in handy.

Fuse Tester

This helps you check if the fuse is burned out. You can find them at most electrical stores.

Replacement fuses

Get your replacement fuses ready from the spare that came with your light. You can as well purchase them from the nearest electrical store before starting out.

5 Easy Steps to Change the Fuse in Your Christmas Light

How To: Change a Fuse on Christmas Lights

1. Disconnect Your Light Strand From the Power Source

This is the first thing to do before opening up your plug. You don’t want to be messing around with electricity while your light string is still plugged into the socket. So ensure you remove the entire string of light from the power source.

2. Open the Fuse Door

At the large side of the plug is the door of the fuse panel. Slide the door open with the small flathead screwdriver, pocket knife, or any other small flathead metal.

Although the door might seem hard to open, a not-too-hard push with your screwdriver or whichever tool you use should pop it open.

3. Remove the Old Fuses

Carefully pry out the two fuses with the screwdriver (or your preferred flat tool). The fuses are the two glass cylindrical objects seated side-by-side in the plug, protecting against power surges, short circuits, and overloads.

Getting the old ones out can be tricky since the fuses are tiny. So be careful not to break them, as they are made of glass. 

Also, ensure you are pushing the fuse away from yourself to avoid any injury if your hand slips.

You also don’t have to be worried if you only have one fuse in there; some Christmas light plug models do not come with a pair.

Once the old ones are out, the next step is to insert the new ones, but before you move on to that, do some inspection.

Hold each fuse one after the other between your index finger and your thumb towards a bright white light. You shouldn’t worry about a bright light if you’re doing this outside your house (on a bright day).

If one or both appear dark or brown, you probably have blown fuses in there. If you’re uncertain, a fuse tester will come in handy. If they’re burnt, that’s probably why your lights aren’t working, and you’ll have to replace them.

4. Replace the Fuses

Now that you’ve confirmed that the fuses are burnt, it’s time to replace them!

Get two new ones of the same amperage and insert them into the plug. The amperage is often written on the side of the old ones, so be sure to use the same.

Since most string lights come with spare fuses, you will surely have the right sets if you haven’t discarded the light’s carton. They can be found in the little plastic pouches next to the Christmas light sets.

Take the spare fuses one at a time and insert them into the fuse compartment. Push them gently into the metal clips as far as you can with your fingers.

Do not apply pressure on the glass part of the fuse; you could accidentally break them in the process. If the spare fuses are not correctly fitted in their compartment, apply regulated pressure with your flathead screwdriver on the metal caps of the fuse on both ends.

5. Close the Door and Test Your Lights

All that’s left to do now is slide the door shut and test your lights.

Close the door with your hand or a screwdriver until it clicks shut. You’ll know it’s properly closed when you can no longer see the fuses through the small window on the plug. Reconnect the strings of lights to the power source and test them out.

Voila! Your lights are back on.

If the light doesn’t come on, then you need to re-open the fuse door to check if they are correctly fitted. If the fuses are correctly fitted, and the light still doesn’t come on, then you probably have the wrong sets. 

Check the burnt ones with the different sets at the electrical store to get the appropriate ones for your Christmas light.

And that’s it! You’ve now successfully changed the fuse in your Christmas lights. 

7 Tips to Make Your Christmas Lights Last Longer

As promised, let’s go over the various ways to secure your Christmas lights and make your holiday season more enjoyable.

1. Don’t Over-Stuff Sockets

If you have too many lights plugged into one socket, you could overload the circuit and cause a fire. Only plug in as many lights as the socket can handle safely.

2. Use the Correct Fuse Amperage

It’s crucial to use the correct fuse amperage, as using one that is too high or too low could damage your lights. Be sure to check the voltage rating before replacing the fuses.

3. Keep Cords Away From Heat

Cords exposed to heat (e.g., near a fireplace) can overheat and start a fire. Keep cords away from any heat source to avoid this danger.

4. Don’t Run Cords Under Rugs

Rugs can block ventilation and cause your cords to overheat. Always run cords on a surface that allows air circulation to keep them cool.

5. Disconnect Lights Before Changing Fuses

When changing fuses, always disconnect the lights from the power source first. Doing this will prevent accidental shocks and avoid damage to your holiday lights.

6. Use a Circuit Tester

If you’re unsure whether a fuse is blown, use a circuit tester to check. This will help you avoid putting in a new fuse that’s not needed and if you notice that one or both of your fuses are burnt, replace them immediately. 

Do not continue to use damaged fuses, as this could cause further damage to your lights and shorten their lifespan.

7. Follow the Manufacturer’s Instructions

This is a vital thing to do when using any type of light. Ensure you follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Adhering will help you avoid potential hazards.

By following these simple tips, you can be sure that your Christmas lights will last for many holiday seasons.

FAQs on How to Change the Fuse in Christmas Lights 

How Can You Tell if a Christmas Light Fuse Is Blown?

The best way to tell if a fuse is blown is to hold it up to bright light. If the filament inside it is broken, then the fuse is blown. The glass of a burnt fuse also sometimes has a cloudy brown or black appearance when blown.

How Do You Fix Christmas Lights That Won’t Turn On?

If your strands of light won’t turn on, the first thing you should do is check the fuse. If it’s blown, follow the steps above to replace it, but If it’s not blown, the problem may be a broken wire, loose bulb, light socket, or a tripped circuit breaker.

How Do You Know Which Bulb Is Out on Christmas Lights?

The best way to find a faulty bulb in a Christmas light string is to use a process of elimination. Start with the bulbs at the end of the string and work your way toward the middle. Remove each light bulb one at a time and test the lights in the entire strand until you find the bad bulbs. Look out for loose bulbs as well.

Why Is Half My Strand of Christmas Lights Out?

If half of your strand of Christmas lights is out, the first thing to do is check the fuse. If it’s blown, follow the steps above to replace it. If it’s not and the bulbs appear to be screwed in correctly, then the problem may be with one of the fuse sockets.

Why Do My Outdoor Christmas Lights Keep Blowing a Fuse?

Overheating is the most common reason why outdoor Christmas lights blow a fuse. If your lights are not adequately cooled, the heat from the bulbs can cause the wires to overheat and break. This is unlikely to happen with LED lights because they produce less heat than incandescent lights.

Final Thoughts

See how easy it is to change the fuse. You don’t have to despair when one of your strings of Christmas lights goes out. Simply follow the steps above to replace the fuse and get your lights shining bright again, and as always, If you ever have any questions, consult a professional electrician.

Have a happy and safe holiday season!

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