Are LED lights waterproof?

by | Dec 6, 2019

Good question. Let’s dig into it a little.

Short Answer: LED Christmas lights are, in fact, NOT waterproof.

Longer Answer:

When I hear this question, I usually ask questions about applications and the questions behind the question to get to the real and helpful answer.

Here are a few of the questions behind the question:

Can I submerge LED Christmas lights in water? No, LED Christmas lights are electrical devices/appliances and it is unsafe to submerge them in water. Even if a brand of 120-volt lights claims to be submergible, it is not electrically safe to do so.

Also. Be sure to keep your lights plugged into GFCI outlets and keep them out of water.

Can I put string lights in my aquarium? No. Do not put light strings in your aquarium, even if they are LED. This is hazardous to both you and any fish or plant life in your aquarium.

Don’t install or dunk your lights into vases, swimming pools, hot tubs, or martinis.

Can I install LED lights outside? If this is your real question, then YES, outdoor-rated LED Christmas lights can be installed out of doors are specially designed for it.

The most durable LED sets have lenses and LED’s that are manufactured in a single piece (the bulbs can’t be removed). This means there are fewer gaps at the bases of the LED which could let in moisture.

LED light strings are Water Resistant

“Water-resistant” is a much better phrase to use when speaking about Christmas light specifications.

All electrical devices will degrade when exposed to sunshine, water, snow, wind, rain, and hail. Water-resistance means that lights will work outside but common sense should be used when installing them.

For instance, don’t do things like the following:

  • Don’t install lights directly in the mud
  • Don’t install lights under a downspout so that water strongly pours over them
  • Don’t install lights inside water features or pools

Electrical common sense is important.

If you have an electrical question about your Christmas light installation, the best thing to do is not to ask Google about it but call your local Master Electrician for expert advice.

Recent Posts

Why are half of my Christmas lights out?

Why are half of my Christmas lights out?

We hear this question from folks who are puzzled that their lights worked fine last season but are half out when they pull them out of storage. Or their lights suddenly half go out during installation.  What gives? Incandescent Christmas tree lights (aka mini...

read more
Measuring to hang Christmas lights – use your family!

Measuring to hang Christmas lights – use your family!

Any tips on measuring for how many feet of lights I'll need? After choosing the color and style of Christmas lights to install along your roofline, before purchasing, the next best step is measuing how many feet of light will be needed for the project. We'd like...

read more
What does the IP65 rating stand for?

What does the IP65 rating stand for?

The Answer: Whether or not you've heard of the actual rating, IP ratings are becoming more attractive to consumers since they are applied to cell phones. Everyone wants to know what will happen to their phones if they were accidentally dropped in water. Either them or...

read more

2 Comments

  1. Alice Carroll

    Thanks for pointing out that there is a difference between being waterproof and being water resistant. I will keep that in mind when getting a Christmas light installation service for my garden soon. There have been light drizzles in my area these past few days so I’ve been waiting for better weather in order to light up my garden with mesmerizing lights.

    Reply
    • Shellie Gardner

      Glad to help!!

      I love that your garden will be mesmerizing!! We don’t get enough rain here and I am totally jealous.

      Have a Merry Christmas.

      Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Blog Posts

What does the IP65 rating stand for?

What does the IP65 rating stand for?

The Answer: Whether or not you've heard of the actual rating, IP ratings are becoming more attractive to consumers since they are applied to cell phones. Everyone wants to know what will happen to their phones if they were accidentally dropped in water. Either them or...

read more
Get This Look: A Symphony in Red, White, and Orange

Get This Look: A Symphony in Red, White, and Orange

We have been working with Marc for over 10 years. We love hearing from him yearly and enjoy seeing his emails with attachments. Marc started decorating with LED string lights and has expanded his display over the years. Relationships like this are a large part of what...

read more
Comparing the Colors in Bubblegum Light Strings

Comparing the Colors in Bubblegum Light Strings

We love these "bubble gum" light strings. Also known as G12 LED (infinitely less descriptive), we love these lights because their lenses are as beautiful lit as they are unlit. These are three of our favorite colors. Classic green and blue flanking teal, the newcomer...

read more
Q/A: What do I use to line my roof?

Q/A: What do I use to line my roof?

After lighting a Christmas tree, lining a roofline is one of the first projects folks start with when decorating outdoors for Christmas. There are 4 basic components required to outline a roofline. Christmas light cord Bulbs Clips Gilbert Plugs 1. Christmas Light Cord...

read more