Best Christmas Lights? Home Depot vs Walmart
Home Depot and Walmart have long dominated the Christmas decor market. But between the two powerhouses, we wondered, which is better? Many factors went into this consideration but the qualities that we deemed most important were price, durability and selection range. After scouring reviews we made the conclusion that Home Depot is the best place to shop for Christmas lights. Because although their prices were slightly higher for most things, compared to Walmart, the quality was much better. Their lights not only were more likely to work out of the box, but were more likely to last all season long. Not to mention, their lights have a 3 year warranty! As long as the lights are handled with care and stored in optimal conditions, you are getting your money’s worth for years to come.
Home Accents (4.5/5 stars)
Home Depot has its’ own brand of Christmas lights called Home Accents. After some research across the board, I’ve found that this brand gets the most positive reviews in relation to volume. Home Accents has a very good selection of Christmas decor in terms of durability and selection. Many people reviewed that the lights lasted then longer than 2 years and were of very good quality. Some complaints about the brand is that there may be sections out in some of the lights but this seems to be a problem across the board for department store Christmas lights. With further research we found that the issue was specifically with the wiring. This makes the light strings impossible to fix. If you notice your Home Accent lights have a few bulbs out, just return them. Don’t waste any time trying to replace bulbs or fix fuses. Even if it’s a year after you bought them! Home Accent lights guarantee 3 years of use from their Christmas lights, clearly stated on the packaging. Make sure to keep the original box for this very reason. The issue with this is that apparently Home Depot doesn’t always hold up their warranty on lights. As seen in the review labeled “Warranty Breach”, a customer tried to return lights within the 3 year warranrty and were turned away by a Home Depot manager. This must be taken with a grain of salt, like most reviews. It is unknown if the lights were kept in good condition. It’s possible there was clear signs of misuse or neglect. Most warranties are voided if there is any clear signs of wear and tear that is not usual or expected with normal use. It is, however, something to keep in mind if you’re depending on a warranty. Always store lights in a dry, cool area between holiday seasons.
The most notable complaints I’ve mentioned, made on Home Depot’s website, are quoted below.
Sections Going Out
“Nearly all of the “Home Accent” mini light strands I purchased in 2017 (and used in 2018) are out on half the strand. No rhyme or reason why. The fuses are good, bulbs are good, everything checks out fine so it must be an internal wiring issue that I’m unable to resolve. Sometimes, if I shift the strand just right, it will turn back on for a day or two, at least until the wind blows and they go out again.”
“Horrible quality product from Home Depot, who refuses to honor the 3 year warranty printed on the package for the four sets of 150 bulb C6 “Home Accents” lights we bought a year ago which did not work thru the first christmas season. I tried returning them at the beginning of this season. Half of each strand has gone dead for no reason, the Home Depot store manager refuses to honor the warranty or exchange the package.”
“Holiday Time” (3/5 stars)
Walmart’s Christmas decor brand is called “Holiday Time”. Walmart is known for having an endless variety of inventory at the cheapest price. This marketing is also applied to their decor line. They have shelves upon shelves of lights in every color, every size, LED, incandescents (etc.). Not to mention their lawn decor section. If you’ve ever been inside a Walmart any time during October-January you’ve seen their impressive displays. They push their decorations extensively during the holiday season and they sell millions of lights every year. But much like most of Walmart’s products, the quality is subpar. If you want to keep your decor budget as low as possible, Walmart isn’t a bad choice. Their lights work for the most part, at least for the first year and it can be a one stop shop for all your Christmas decoration needs. A common pitfall that we noticed when looking through reviews was that you cannot connect multiple stings. Individually the lights may work great, but once they are attached to one another to decorate the house, the fuses are not able to handle the added energy and will likely blow out. Another review claimed that you should never connect more than 3 strings together and that this should be common sense for all homeowners; regardless of light brand. When buying low quality lights (any non-commercial lights) this may be true. It’s definitely not true regarding the commercial grade lights we use. Another frequent problem with these lights is that sections of the lights simply won’t turn on. The most noteworthy reviews mentioned above have been quoted below.
Can’t Connect Multiple Strings
“Don’t waste your time or money, these are junk. After testing them to make sure they worked, we put them on house. After a minute the fuse blows. Fix fuse. After fuse. After fuse. Took off house. Tried each set again individually. All work. I guess the only way to get them to work is to plug in each strand individually.”
Sections Going Out
“sections start going out within a few weeks. This seems to be a common problem across every product of this brand. Have returned multiple strands due to entire sections randomly going out.”
“If you read the directions these work well, also, if you’ve EVER owned xmas lights then you know to plug them in before installing (common sense). No more than 3 strings connected at once, or you’ll blow a fuse. But all in all I had a great experience with these. They twinkle and look awesome on my house. Oh, I got the blue ones. They’re pretty sweet.”