Repairing a Prelit Christmas Tree

My mama left me her pre-lit Christmas tree and her lifetime collection of antique ornaments. So, needless to say, I'm willing to do whatever it takes (short of setting my house on fire!), to fix this tree.

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Anyway, last year when I plugged in the tree only 3, yes 3 sections of lights lit up. Please understand, 3 limbs "did not" light. Only 3 small sections out of about 500 limbs! At that point I went searching and found what I consider to be one of the hidden wonders of the world, "the Christmas Light Fixer Gun". And it was wonderful! It fixed "every" light on the tree with the exception of one portion of the very last limb on the bottom of the tree.

So, this year I was ready "to do battle" with my trusty fix-it gun. What a disaster! Part of the lights on limb sections would burn, half wouldn't. Various lights on various sections of limbs got "really" bright then burned out completely, some of the bulbs themselves were fine when I tested them, others were black in the center and completely blown to kingdom come.

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You should also know this tree has 16 strands of lights that all meet at the bottom of the tree. They don't plug in to separate outlets on the "trunk" of the tree. All strands of lights provide converge at the base of the tree.

I'm already facing one problem, the replacement bulbs I have, don't have wires long enough to fit in the green husk. Any information anybody can give me will be incredibly welcome. I do have one more question. Is there any such thing as a complete replacement light kit to replace the lights throughout the entire tree? Thank you for your time and hopefully your suggestions!

By Molly C-N

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July 19, 20130 found this helpful

First, I always wondered just how effective those Fix-it Guns are; I think maybe it's just a temporary fix?

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Second, I don't know about replacement kits for specific pre-lighted trees; perhaps you could contact the manufacturer, if you still have that information. Was there a box, or a manual with the tree?

Third, if you try to replace the bulbs individually, you need to know the proper wattage to use. The wattage varies depending on the length of the light string; longer strings usually use lower wattage bulbs. If your tree's lights are all together on one string, they are probably 3.5 watt bulbs, or less. Again, the box or a manual, or even a tag on the cord somewhere might help.

I get Christmas bulbs and strings from a really nice company, 1000Bulbs; they have customer service people who are very helpful over the phone. Perhaps someone there can help you. The website www.1000bulbs.com, and they have an 800 number.

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Good luck! If worst comes to worst, you can always take the old lights off and put new sets on. I recommend using several 35-light strands rather than longer ones, as the long ones are harder to handle - I know this from my own frustrating experience with a 100-light strand - never again! LOL!

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July 21, 20130 found this helpful

I ran into the same problem with a pre-lit tree. I decided I was going to cut off all the wires and just use light strands. I am still cutting off those wires. They are wrapped on the branches in the craziest of ways and in every direction. If it wasn't for the fact it's such a beautiful tree, I'd just donate it and let someone else use it as they saw fit. But, I know when it's all said and done, I am going to have a very full and beautiful tree. Thought I might use it outdoors for seasons and holidays.

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July 23, 20130 found this helpful

I would toss the tree (or donate it) and get a new one. The antique ornaments are worth cherishing; this tree sounds like more trouble than is worth to you.

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