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Replacing Christmas Tree Lights with White Ring Base

Category Lights

Can the white ringed bulbs that have the safety fused lamps be replaced?

By Karen

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December 21, 20131 found this helpful

I found this information on Home Depot.com.

"I am having the same problem. If you don't have this tree, I cannot recommend it. GE has built in "planned obsolescence" of the light strings by design. Within a year or two, one segment of your lights will go out. They will not replace the tree, at best you pay for the shipping of the lights (which is 3-4x what the string would cost) and you have to re-string it yourself (no small feat). That being said, I do love the look and fullness of this tree.

Here is how I fixed my lights myself: Unplug power to the lights. Note that there is one bulb (it is one of the few clear bulbs on my multicolored lights) on each strand with a white ring at the base (most lights have a solid green base, you're looking for one with a white stripe at the base). Carefully pull this white-ringed bulb out (you may have to pull just the bulb then use needle nosed pliers to yank the white base). Remove bulb from the white base and insert a new bulb (you must use the original bases, so thread replacement bulb wires through the white base and fold up wires as they were before).

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Re-insert into the socket and plug back in/turn on.

If the lights don't come on then disconnect power, remove same bulb (keep it in it's white base) and squish the socket on the outside to move the contacts closer together, try the bulb again, it should light up now. These "safety fused lamps" have larger sockets than the rest of the strand, GE doesn't sell replacement bulbs for them so you must "squish" the socket so it makes good contact with the replacement bulb in the base."


Word of warning: GE instructions state "Do not remove the bulbs with the white ring base. These bulbs are the safety-fused lamps. Removing these bulbs will permanently damage the light string and will void the limited warranty of this product." This is a load of garbage and is the "obsolescence by design" that I was talking about. Google the terms: gatwood repairing GE lights. You'll get an even more detailed review of how to repair if my quick fix didn't work for you

Reply Was this helpful? 1
December 10, 20170 found this helpful

Worked like a charm.  THANK YOU!!!!!!!!

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