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Mike
Mike, Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
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Experience:  Licensed Master Electrician - OnQ Certified Data Voice Audio Video Installer
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I have a beautiful pre-lit Christmas tree with 700 GE C-5 retro

Resolved Question:

I have a beautiful pre-lit Christmas tree with 700 GE C-5 retro lights. Lights generally stay lit if one burns out. However, I have two sections completely out. It's not the connection (plugs), it's not the fuses, but when I first bought it, I did have one of the same sections out. Jiggling the string (as with miniature lights) did make the problem go away for most of the Christmas season. There is one light per string that is permanent and con not be removed because of some type of protection, but these do not appear to be burned out. My question to you is: What is a quick way to diagnose and fix the problem with two sections other than what I have tried and other than unwrapping the jungle of lights and wrapping new ones? It's a thick bushy pre-lit tree, and with 700 lights), it's a monster to work on the lights, and my time is valuable.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Electrical
Expert:  Mike replied 4 years ago.
Customer unfortunately, there isn't much you can do to troubleshoot these lighting systems. It used to be (when the bulbs were installed series) that when a section was out, you simply replaced the bulb nearest the working bulbs and this fixed the problem. Oddly, technology has changed and now the lights are connected in parallel so that one bulb will not affect the rest of the lights. This is certainly a better design but it doesn't help when trying to track loose loose connections in the line. I say "loose connection" (and I don't mean at the plug, but in the wiring itself) because this is certainly what you have here. Loose connections in this type of lighting cannot be user repaired as the wiring/connections are built into the light sockets and only safe solution is to change out the lights that aren't working. I strongly urge you to go ahead and change them, as loose connections create resistance, which in turn creates heat in the circuit. Loose connections are potential fire hazards, especially with this type of lighting. Hope this helps!

Feel free to ask additional questions.

Regards,
Mike
Mike, Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 2742
Experience: Licensed Master Electrician - OnQ Certified Data Voice Audio Video Installer
Mike and other Electrical Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
As in the question, I was looking for a quick easy fix that you electricians might have up your sleeve. Thanks for replying, but the answer you gave me is what I already knew. I do appreciate you taking the time. Removing the prewrapped lights and rewrapping these on this particular Christmas tree is for the birds. Thanks anyway.
Expert:  Mike replied 4 years ago.
Unfortunately, there is no "quick easy fix". And while this isn't what you wanted to hear, it would have been irresponsible of me to tell you otherwise. Sometimes, you just need "confirmation", which you have received. If you don't feel that "confirmation" is worth anything you are certainly not obligated to "accept". We do not want you to accept if you are not 100% satisfied. Best of luck!

Regards,
Mike
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Actually, I was not asking for an unsafe fix. I would never do that.
Expert:  Mike replied 4 years ago.
I'm afriad I don't understand your question. We would never suggest an unsafe fix.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Exactly. You did not suggest an unsafe fix and told me so. I was just saying that I would not want an unsafe fix either. The last reply was not a question. It was a statement of agreement to what you previously said.
Expert:  Mike replied 4 years ago.
GreatCustomer Thanks for you using justanswer... have a great holiday!

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