How to replace a fuse on Christmas tree lights

Written by terri rawls
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How to replace a fuse on Christmas tree lights
Christmas tree lights have two fuses located in the male attachment plug. (Getty Premium images)

While Christmas tree lights can add beauty to a Christmas tree, they can also add great frustration when not working properly. Homeowners have been known to spend hours checking and replacing the small bulbs in light sets when, many times, the problem is as simple as a blown fuse. Fuses are a safety feature on today's Christmas tree lights which help protect against power surges, overloads and short circuits. If your Christmas tree lights are not working, check the fuses. Replacing a fuse on Christmas tree lights is simple and can save you a lot of time and frustration.

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  1. 1

    Unplug the Christmas tree lights and locate the fuse panel. The fuse panel is located on the accessory plug with two prongs, commonly known as the male plug. There are a couple of different types of covers on fuse panels. One may have a plate covering the fuses, while the other may have a drawer that holds the fuses.

    How to replace a fuse on Christmas tree lights
    The fuse panel is located on the male accessory plug.
  2. 2

    Open the fuse panel on the Christmas tree light plug. Even though the fuse panel may appear as if does not open, it will. Use a small flat head screwdriver to slide the fuse panel cover open or to slide the fuse panel drawer out.

    How to replace a fuse on Christmas tree lights
    Slide the cover of the fuse panel open to remove the fuses.
  3. 3

    Turn the attachment plug over to remove the fuses from the Christmas tree lights. In most cases, the fuses will just fall out into your hand. If they do not, tap the plug gently against your hand. If the fuses are stubborn and still won't come out, it may be necessary to gently pry them out with a small screwdriver or knife.

  4. 4

    Determine if the fuses on the Christmas tree lights are blown by holding them up towards a light and looking closely at both fuses. If one or both of the fuses appear to be dark or black, the fuse is probably blown. If you're just not certain, you can use a fuse tester to test the fuses. Replace the blown fuse with a new fuse and insert them back into the fuse panel, securely closing the cover back in place. Plug in the Christmas tree lights to ensure they are now working.

    How to replace a fuse on Christmas tree lights
    After replacing fuses, close the fuse panel completely.

Tips and warnings

  • As a safety feature, most Christmas tree lights have pre-installed fuses which limit the amount of current allowed to pass through the lights.
  • Packages of spare Christmas tree light fuses are available at most discount stores. Just be sure to purchase the proper size.
  • Since most Christmas tree light sets come with replacement fuses, replacing both fuses will ensure both fuses are good.
  • If replacing the fuse in the Christmas tree lights does not solve the problem, check for bulbs that may be broken or blown.
  • Always unplug the string of Christmas tree lights before installing or replacing the fuses.
  • Make sure that your replacement fuses have the same voltage and amp settings to avoid fire risk.
  • Remove the Christmas tree light fuses carefully.
  • Do not replace the Christmas tree light plug, as this presents a fire risk.

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