questionswhy do all artificial xmas trees come pre-lit now?

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I on the other hand appreciate the prelit trees. There used to be a gnome in my attic who took all of the light strings that I put away so carefully and tangled them into a ghastly mess! So much easier. But, kudos to you for having the time and patience and artistic desire.

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I understand what you're saying about using your own lights - especially if you have some of the bubble lights. I don't have an artificial tree, so I'm not sure of this - Can't you just add your lights to one that's prelit? When I look at photos they all have the tiny, itsy-bitsy lights; seems like adding more strings of larger colored bulbs would be nice. Do know unlit trees are still available, so if you're concerned maybe you should buy one now. Lots of sales going on. Better yet, wait until after Christmas & pick up one then.

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Check a local thrift shop. On many occasions, I've ran across trees brand new in box that are of the unlit variety.

Granted, my current tree was a bartered one (via Craigslist). I had a small one, she had a large one. I bought a house, she was moving into an apartment. Win-win.

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I understand the consternation about the prelit tree, I had it too. But one thing I've learned is it can be hard to put on too many lights on a tree, and those prelits tend to never have enough. I bought an extra string for my 4 footer and strung it into the tree, and it looks a ton better than it did with just the prelit lights. Don't let the prelit strings stop you, go add on the ones you like! It'll look even better than before!

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I got a great deal on a display tree once on Christmas Eve from Target. It was like 95% off! Anyway once I got it home in the back of the van (it was assembled already) I decided to break it down for storage until the next year. While the tree itself easily came apart into five sections the lights.. well not so much so.

I never was a fan of white lights anyway (I've always believed that Christmas should be colorful and gaudy for the kids!) so rather than try to untangle the mess I ended up just cutting the lights off and it was no different from a tree that doesn't come with them.

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Certainly see your point, but personally I love the convenience of the prelit trees, no tangled up strings of lights, no hassling to connect strands together, basically our 8 footer flips up almost like an umbrella.

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I was just looking at the Sunday fliers and somebody's ad had all unlit ones. I think it was Michael's (the craft store).

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Personally, I think the pre-lit trees are mostly a convenience, but I'll grant your point, especially if you like blinky lights or have fancy ones (like bubble lights). (The issue with blinky lights is that pre-lit trees, at least those of any significant size, say 6.5 feet and up, come in sections and it sucks when a two foot high horizontal slice of tree goes dark all at once.)

The pre-lit (white only) tree I got at BJ's Warehouse two years ago would be easy to convert into an unlit tree by merely removing the seven or eight 100 bulb strands of lights from it (no cutting required except for a few cable ties).

However, rather than doing that, I put the white strands on one X-10 dimmer and add another seven or so multi-colored strands (100 lights each)on another X-10 dimmer. I can then vary the tree's brightness as desired and add color (though with incandescent bulbs, they are reddish at low light levels).

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How long do the lights last on a pre lit tree?

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@caffeine_dude:

This will mark my third year of use and I expect very few bulb failures, but will have to see how it goes.

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Okay, I re-checked the Michael's ad and it wasn't them. I can't remember who it was now but I do know that Home Depot had some and Target had one in their ad that I was looking at because it seemed relatively cheap.

I already have a little tree so I am not in that big a hurry to replace it but I would like to get some lights that work and thought I would switch to LEDs if I can ever find some that are affordable.

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