How to hang Christmas Lights the easy way!

How to hang Christmas Lights

The best way to hang Christmas Lights!

I don't know about you but I cannot stand when Christmas lights are crooked or the wind takes off with them & they need to be re-done. Living 40 miles southeast of Chicago we get some damaging winds that can lift a 100 year old tree out of the ground, so christmas lights are a lightweight missile that can easily come down no matter how many plastic light clips you use around here.

Don't even mention the fact that you'd need to add a clip every 4 inches to even come close to holding lights in place, and that is still no guarantee they will stay in place or be straight enough. Plus, let's talk about the installation itself. Being on a ladder for the entire day? My husband; he'd rather hit his thumb with a hammer, so I had to get creative. 

This was our first attempt back in 2008 to hang lights outside. Awful, right? I didn't exactly inspire my neighborhood to sing Christmas carols. I didn't even want to look at my house. We have enclosed gutters so we don't have to worry about debris getting in them, but it makes it interesting trying to get light clips put securely in place.

So I spent hours researching ways to hang Christmas lights. I surfed websites,called Light Companies, I checked everywhere, nothing. Well, I finally figured out if the lights could be put up in groups and secured to something straight (and sturdy), it would go faster. Here is what I finally came up and it works beautifully!

Below is what the channel looks like at your local improvement store.

We use "J Channel" and inserted holiday lights inside! 

We purchased enough of the "J Channel" to fit the front of our ranch house and drilled holes in the bottom of it and pushed each icicle into the holes so they hung downward. The longest part of this project was pushing each icicle strand through the holes that are 2" apart in the bottom of the channel. 

To cut and insert the lights inside the channel took a couple of hours and you only have to do this part once! The manufacturers box stated that these lights were spaced 4" apart. I wanted a thicker look, so we cut the holes in the channel 2" apart.

To hang the channel outside outside? Took less then 30 minutes. 

All you have to do next year is grab your lights still inside the channel, ladder, screws and drill and go. If you do not have a garage or basement where you can store/hang a 10 foot long piece of plastic that houses icicle lights, you can always cut the J Channel in smaller more manageable lengths. We stuck with the 10 footers because it is only 5 or 6 pieces total and we use 3 bicycle hooks mounted to the underside of our joists in the basement to hold these lights year round.

Below are some pics of the lights being stored in our basement hanging from some large J hooks.

For 2016 I did a video on the installation for these lights. Hope you like it!