Timely - Christmas Lights

Old 12-23-03, 07:17 PM
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Timely - Christmas Lights

Can any of the wise ones on this forum tell me why this happens? A certain style of the currently fashionable Christmas lights consist of three sections of the "mini-light" strands arranged in a "draped banner" style. Of course, they advertise that one bad bulb won't blank out the whole string. But we have several strands in which one the the three sections of each string will go out without warning. Their "instructions" don't seem to anticipate this possibility, ewven though it has happened on several of our sets. Any ideas?
Old 12-23-03, 07:32 PM
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ONE bad bulb won't blow the string (or section of the string), but when the SECOND bulb goes, you're toast. When you pay $3.98 for the lights, do you really expect detailed instructions - or reliability?
Old 12-23-03, 07:34 PM
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The bulbs are designed to short-circuit when they fail, and therefore not take out the rest of the bulbs (but increasing the voltage a bit to each one). And each string is designed in several segments. The bulbs in each segment are in series, but the segments are in parallel with other segments.

One of the dark bulbs is either missing or needs to be reseated.
Old 12-24-03, 05:01 AM
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Unfortunately finding the bad bulb when they are all out is tough. One may not even be bad, it just may have wiggled out a bit.

Try reseating each bulb one at a time. If that does not work then try each bulb one at a time in a good section of the string.

Or, simply throw out the string and buy a new one.
Old 12-24-03, 08:11 AM
charlie b
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Please note also that one “bad” (i.e., filament open) bulb will not darken the string, but one loose (or missing) bulb will. I have, on occasion, discovered the source of a dark string by starting at one end and checking each bulb, in turn, all the way (if necessary) to the other end. I do this with the string plugged in, so that it will light if, by some great luck, I find the one loose bulb. Is it worth the time and effort? Not really, not with the price of lights going down each year.
Old 12-25-03, 06:58 PM
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Thanks to all for your replies. I think my sentiment is shared by others here - the main problem isn't one of cost. Its the "pain-in-the-a__" factor. I have no trouble trashing a string of lights if I know its bad. Its the trouble I have already gone to by the time I discover that fact, and the bother of doing the same work over again. Plus, when one first sees the problem, the temptation is to "fix it", and that ends up suckering you in for "another hour".

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