Burned out Noma LED Christmas lights

Burned out Noma LED Christmas lights are something I read a lot about. On almost all of my Noma posts, I have at least one person talking about how they have a set of LED lights with burned out bulbs.

So, what do you do with a set LED Christmas lights that have burned out lights?

Well, I hope you kept your receipts because Canadian Tire (who sells the Noma brand) will replace your burned out Noma LED Christmas lights lights with a new set. This is because the Noma LED Christmas lights carry a 5 year warranty that covers burned out LED light sets. You must have your receipt though.

If you didn’t keep your receipt then you may need to get creative with your LED Christmas lights. Well, assuming that the entire set isn’t burned out that is. Depending on how you use your lights, you may not even have to do anything to mask your burned out lights.

If you put the lights on a tree or bush, you will hardly notice a few burned out lights. Remember that at night and from a distance, the whole tree or bush will just be a mass of lights. Take a look at my example of Noma LED Christmas lights outside from last year. The picture is very zoomed but you can still get the idea of how difficult it would be to find a few burned out LED lights.

Multi-colour Noma LED lights outside

Multi-colour Noma LED lights outside

If you put the lights along your gutter or around windows then it gets a little more tricky. If you really want to have evenly spaced out lights then one option is to double up a good light with a burned out light. Assuming of course that you only have a few lights per string that aren’t burned out. Yes, this will shorten the distance you can cover with the set of lights but it will provide the even spacing desired.

Another option for gutters or around windows is to simply add more LED Christmas lights! One of my favorite displays of LED Christmas lights was the Physicians house at the Upper Canada Village – Alight at Night display last year.

The Physician's House at Upper Canada Village

The Physician's House at Upper Canada Village

This is a very good example of how adding more LED Christmas lights can hide the fact that some of your LED lights may be burned out.

Finally, if you’re really ambitious (and know what you’re doing) you could cut the dead LED Christmas lights out of the string of lights. This would require knowledge of electrical stuff so you can reconnect everything correctly. I can’t really recommend anyone do this though as if you don’t know what you’re doing you could create a very dangerous fire hazard.

47 thoughts on “Burned out Noma LED Christmas lights

  1. Eddie

    I was so fed up paying the high electric bills, I decided to try out LED lights. I bought the LED lights to replace my old bulbs – CFL and incandescent – and guess what – my electric bills did drop a lot! I also found a great site to buy the LEDs called LEDinsider.com that I would recommend enthusiastically. They had good service (good phone and email support), great FAQs so I knew what I needed, and competitive prices; also, their shipping was fast and the LEDs were as good as advertised. http://www.LEDInsider.com. Very good online shopping experience

    Reply
  2. Larry Drozda

    I’ve found that Noma’s led light strings coming from China are of a very poor quality. The main failures have not been burn outs but rust outs. Their outdoor lights are not capable of exterior use unless they are protected from moisture. The leads feeding power to the LED’s are steel, which rust out with exposure to moisture. Use Nome products only indoors and they’ll be fine.

    Reply
  3. Jay P

    I strung up 60 feet of C6 NOMA LED lights that I purchased last winter and just a couple of nights ago I noticed that 30 feet of them are dim. And of course I can’t find the receipt which Canadian Tire requires. So I bought another string to replace them but of course had to buy the smaller lights as stock is out on C6’s.

    When I took the other strand down, one shake and they light up and then go dim again. I checked the tag on it and Yes they are made in China.

    But the electricity saved must have covered that string over the last season.

    Reply
  4. Pingback: Noma “Super Bright” LED Christmas Lights | Ivany

  5. mommalee

    Noma christmas lights are the worst lights I have ever purchased, From year to year the warm whites are a totally different colour… and half the strand burns out. I cant even count how many times Ive had to replace these lights, and although they are easy to exchange with a receipt… Its very irritating putting them up 3 times a season and having to take them back down to replace… Love the lights but VERY poor quality.

    Reply
    1. Jeff Ivany Post author

      Hi mommalee. I agree that it is really annoying that the white LED lights keep changing colour every year but that’s not just Noma lights – it’s LED lights in general. Cheap LED lighting is still a really “young” product and getting different colours out of LEDs isn’t easy. Unlike red, blue or green LEDs, there really is no such thing as a “white” LED.

      Please don’t think I’m defending Noma lights because I’m not. I’ve returned my fair share of lights (you can read about it all on this blog) and I’m really surprised by their apparent lack of quality control. However, after 5 years I now own 15 strings of Noma LED Christmas lights and think both Noma and Canadian Tire have been doing a fantastic job at honouring the 5 year warranties on the product. I have yet to be told no when I come in with a set of burned out lights and my receipt in hand.

      Reply
      1. Donna

        Unfortunately I don’t have a receipt to return my 35 light,cool white set (now discontinued) to Canadian Tire. The 3 sets that I bought last season (2010) were taken out of storage to put up and none of them would work. Very disappointing when I think of the traditional lights that I had for over twenty years that always worked with a few bulds to replace or wiring to fix. These lights are impossible to do anything with. I’m sure I spent more money last year in buying these new lights than I did in power bills I would have paid for a couple of weeks last Xmas. Now I guess I’ll have to send them to the landfill. So much for reuse, recycle and reduce. It really is becoming a “throw away” society. Things are supposed to be getting better product wise and cheaper for the consumer, but is it really? I also am having problems with the regular led light bulbs for indoors. I’m tired of returning them for new ones because they don’t last. LED lighting has a long way togo and if we get there and are still paying out for them, at least we’ll be getting what we paid for. Until then, I’ll continue to be frustrated with the lack of quality for the big purchase price.

        Reply
  6. Wendy

    Yes I have the same problem with my LED lights burning out…this year..on Christmas Day….of course…..half the tree was not lite up….
    I tried to return them..but with no Receipt..it was pointless…
    So Thanks for the idea….Jeff about doubling up….I will try that next year…
    I have also written to the company telling them about my problems with the lights….
    so we will see if they do anything…

    Reply
  7. Brad Chapman

    I wrote the company Wendy. Their excuse is that they are a company out of UK, and don’t have any direct responsibility with Canadian or North American consumers for that matter. They only referred me to contact Canadian Tire to see what the store could do. Alas, no reciept…no dice.

    Reply
  8. Ron McLaughlin

    I have a 11/2 story home.I like putting up alot of xmas lights.Ihave purchased approx. 14 sets of these led lights.I have had nothing but problems ever since I installed them.Iwill never buy them again.

    Reply
  9. G.Pap

    We have numerous strings of LED lights on our house. We are retired and not inshape to be climbing ladders anytime esp.winter. half of our strings are unlit for half the string. Of course no receipts. So there must be a way repair the half string!!!! Dam it is very discouraging!!!

    Reply
    1. Jeff Ivany Post author

      It’s possible to make the majority of the lights work again but it involves finding the one that failed and rewiring the set to bypass it. This isn’t something you should really do though as if you make a mistake, you can create a big fire hazard.

      Newer LED light sets are coming with the ability to remove/replace individual LED lights. It’s unfortunate that this is only happening now as I too have a lot of lights in hard to reach places. Having to replace the entire string is really annoying and very wasteful.

      Reply
  10. debbie routh

    yes i am sending this coment about the indoor lighted garland sets i have had them for two years an all of a sudden they quit working i have sent a letter in the mail . i have two sets and thier is no lights that come on an im hopeing that someone will do some thing for me

    Reply
    1. Jeff Ivany Post author

      Your best chance is to contact the retailer where you bought the lights and see if they can help you. Most of the Noma brand lights from Canadian Tire come with a 5 year warranty but you typically require your receipt. That said, you may be able to convince them to exchange the lights under the warranty.

      Good Luck!

      Reply
  11. Paul Bray

    I too am so frustrated with these LED lights, AKA garbage. I was in the process of putting them on my eavestrough today with the use of my neighbours trusty ladder and to my amazement, hold on to your chair. The first of my three strings went ( the entire string ) out before I had them clipped on to the gutter. I made a technical adjustment to them which I was a little happier with. I tore them right off the eavestrough while standing on the ground. I will never buy these garbage lights again. If I can’t get “REAL” christmas lights, I will not have any on my house. Maybe I should have jumped up and down on them after I tore them from my house. This makes two years in a row for trouble LED lights and no receipt either.

    Reply
  12. Paul Bray

    On the topic of repaing these garbage led lights. How do you know which light is burnt out if the entire string is not lighting up? But the other sets plugged into the first string (which is not lighting up) are working. I am an electrician and the only way that these can be repaired is to cut out each and every light leaving just enough wire to re-join them all together to make up a full string. Which is not safe for the average people to do. This is just my opinion.

    Reply
  13. max

    Well, I am really fed up with Noma. I have been supporting this company for several years, and what I mean by this comment is, I have had several different sets of these lights and they always burn out. The thing that I am really pissed about this time is, the sales person last year told me that if I change to LED lights they will never burn out. The whole string is not out, it’s just that they went very dime, almost non visible. And guess what? I do not have a copy of the bill…

    Reply
  14. DC

    OK, so NOMA “outdoor” LEDs are crap. I get that now. And I will never buy them again or even bother to exchange the bad ones I have for new ones at Canadian Tire. Can someone recommend another brand of outdoor LED lights that are actually reliable?

    It’s ironic that I purchased these lights with the intention of being kind to the planet and now I have no choice but to toss seven faulty strings of C9s into a landfill.

    I am VERY disappointed in these NOMAs and even more disappointed in Canadian Tire for continuing to sell them despite their obvious defect.

    Reply
  15. george

    NOMA IS JUNK !! canadian tire sells lots from noma,had many lights fail from NOMA JUNK !
    Very funny and secretly, you can not find their company on the internet to complain,They know they sell JUNK ! they dont want to hear from customers.Heard several people that purchased ropoe lights from NOMA that are junk as well.buy something else another brand not NOMA !

    Reply
  16. Rosemary

    I purchased 10 sets of warm white Noma LED mini outdoor lights from Canadian Tire just before Christmas. I had not purchased them before because the light the clear one gave was blue in colour. I strung them on a tree in the front of our home and on our back deck where they stay up all year long.
    The 4 sets on our deck 3 1/2sets have just gone out. The front lights seem fine so far.
    I have always had the regular outdoor mini lights and I may have to replace the odd bulb or odd set now and again but nothing like this. I thought I was doing a good thing by replacing the regular lights. I did not keep my receipt, so I will be going back to the regular bulbs until they can make better LED mini lights.

    Reply
  17. Larry Carver

    I have a set of LED lights and 5 of the bulbs are burnt out. Can you replace these bulbs and if so how. I tried to take one bulb out and it broke.

    Reply
    1. Jeff Ivany Post author

      Larry, most of the older LED light sets don’t have replaceable bulbs. If the light doesn’t pull out easily, you are out of luck. Sorry!

      Many of the LED Christmas light sets I’ve seen in the last year or so are coming with replaceable bulbs. I bought a set last year that came with a couple replacements.

      Reply
  18. Yvonne Wiens

    I have a problem with my indoor Noma Prelit Christmas tree as well as the prelit porch trees. There are sections of the trees where the lights are completely burnt out. Any suggestions on how to replace these sections?

    Thanks.

    Reply
  19. R Burley

    Noma was once a Canadian company now they are Chinese junk. I love to see companies fail when they attempt to improve their bottom line by buying off shore crap. They never factor in the failures and how it affects their company; they only look at the immediate return on investment which is a very near sited ideology. Ford Chrysler and GM to follow soon, their cars (some of them) are made here but all the parts come from China. I have a major issue with China; safety and environmental are terms these people have never even considered. We are not allowed to use certain materials here in Canada but China is free to use everything and ship it over here. It still ends up in our dumps regardless of the initial origin. We Canadian need to stop supporting them>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>..

    Reply
    1. Jeff Ivany Post author

      Wow, you really don’t get it do you? North American companies have moved production off shore so that they can continue to sell product to North Americans who continue to want more stuff as cheap as possible. You aren’t going to get rich selling commodity items like LED Christmas lights. This “crap” is being produced in China to satisfy the greedy North American who wants everything for as cheap as possible. Heck, it’s not like the people in China need “Christmas” lights now is it?

      Oh, and no, most of the really toxic stuff doesn’t end up in our North American dumps – we ship it back to India, China, or any number of other “non-first world” countries to be “recycled”. AKA dumped in a pile of toxic waste for kids to rummage through looking for something they might be able to sell so they can eat today.

      If you’re so concerned about products from China, then stop buying/using products from China. The first should probably be the computer you’re using.

      Reply
  20. Chris

    I believe the main problem comes from the fact that LEDs are a polarized DC device, and unless they are well designed to withstand the reverse voltage they will receive from AC, they will eventually fail. Ideally they should block the reverse voltage before it gets to them, or even better use an AC/DC converter, which as a bonus would also get rid of that annoying flicker.

    Reply
  21. R Burley

    First off, the “I really don’t get it comment” is a bit of a far shot considering you don’t even know me. If you can judge me with one paragraph then you are far superior to my Professors. I don’t believe it is the consumer that is “greedy”. I know it is the manufacturers that are greedy. I go out of my way to buy Canadian or American products and frankly I would rather pay more than stand in the return line at Canadian Tire. I have been involved in Engineering for the last twenty years and I understand full well what is happening.

    Also, are LED’s not basically a check valve?

    Interestingly, I notice that the blue tends to fail more. As I understand it the colour is only in the blub not the LED so I am not sure how blue tends to fail more.

    Reply
    1. Jeff Ivany Post author

      In general, most consumer LED Christmas lights actually use a blue-hue LED. They tend to be brighter and once the plastic “bulb” is placed on it, you don’t notice the blue light. They are also cheaper to produce. This is partially why “white” LED Christmas lights from a few years ago always had the awful blue hue. White was also more expensive given how difficult it was to produce a white LED, or more specifically, a less blue LED.

      My comment about not getting it was how you talk about China and the people who live there – “safety and environmental are terms these people have never even considered”. The people in China are only producing what North Americans (and other Western countries) are interested in buying for as cheap as possible. The vast majority of Chinese can’t even afford to purchase the goods in their local big city markets where knock offs are as common as the real items.

      As for who is greedy, take a look at the gross margins of EMS companies (For example, Foxconn, Celectica, Jabil, Sanmina-SCI, etc.) over the last decade. These are the multi-national manufacturing companies that produce the vast majority of your electronics (in China in most cases). Hint – their gross margins have been going down year over year and tend to be in the 10% or lower range. They aren’t making very much off of consumer products.

      Now take a look at your local retail store and see how much they sell these items for. It’s a lot cheaper than it used to be but places like BestBuy (just an example) are still able to sell with 100% markups (or better). This is why they are still making loads of money when they have 70% off sales.

      You can buy a decent string of LED lights direct from China for $5 or less, often including shipping direct to your door. I don’t even think there are any North American manufacturers anymore so skip the greedy middle man and save yourself even more money buying direct from China. Or, in your case, don’t buy them at all.

      Disclosure: I’m an Engineer and I work for an EMS company.

      Reply
  22. R Burley

    Well, at the end of the day, it appears we do agree. Thanks for the input on the lights; i did not know that. I am a mechanical guy :)

    Thanks my friend

    Rodney

    Reply
  23. Nailnot C

    I purchased a lit tree from Canadian Tire in 2009 for $300.00 This is the second Xmas , and lo and behold LED lights are already burned out and not replaceble!!! It is very frustrating when there is no customer service from any company> It seems they just want you to spend more money!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! No such luck, I will find another way to decorate my home , and it certainly won’t be NOMA>

    Reply
  24. June

    Well I guess Canadian Tire is tired of taking them back too…went their tonight and they would not take them back even thought they were within warranty. Policy is one year store warranty and after that have to deal with manufacturer. Think I will be ab;e to reach them and get refund from China?

    June

    Reply
    1. Jeff Ivany Post author

      A while back I contacted Canadian Tire directly about their warranty policy (it was with respect to their Mastercraft brand’s “lifetime” warranty) and was told that it was basically up to each individual store as to how they would honour it.

      The way I interpreted that was the warranty is just a marketing gimmick and they really only expect to apply it to LED light sets that are dead when you buy them. In that case, it’s not even a warranty replacement, it’s a DOA replacement/exchange.

      Sorry, it seems that pure luck is a good portion of how well/long LED lights work.

      Reply
  25. June

    Oh my mistake…bought the 200 light string, the only set it appears that they won’t warranty past a year even though the manufacturer does!!??
    June

    Reply
  26. Jade

    Hello! Connected 4 strings of white icicles led lights to 4 strings of colored led lights to 2 set white to a wreath and then to 6 sets of colored led lights. A total of 16 set of lights when plugged in all lights except the first 4 white iciciles where burn out. Have these lights connected to another outlet and they do not work. Could it be a surcharge of electricty or a defect of lights according to them if 1 string of lights has 2 watts and do not exceed 480watts, you could connect 240 sets is that possible. LED lights should not burn out. What could be the problem. Thanks Jade Happy Holidays

    Reply
    1. Jeff Ivany Post author

      Jade, have you tried connecting just the set of 4 icicle lights on it’s own directly to an outlet? I’m guessing that they still won’t work. If I understand correctly, the 4 burnt out lights are part of a larger set? What may be happening in that case is the set is partially connected in parallel and partially in serial. When connected in serial, if one light burns out, it will cause the other lights to fail as there will be no path for electricity through the burnt out light. If the set was all connected in parallel, only one light would burn out and all the rest would continue to work as there are extra wires to allow electricity to flow past the burnt out light. Some sets use a combination of series and parallel where they have a couple lights connected in series as a group and then multiple groups are connected in parallel. This is some what more confusing as you will see a couple lights in a row that won’t work but the rest of the set probably still works.

      Your comment about the max wattage is basically correct. In theory, you should be able to connect a whole lot of sets together and not draw too much current to cause your outlet breaker to trip.

      Reply
  27. Jason

    Hi Jeff…I stumbled across this blog as I was investigating how to service my noma led light set after just 1.5 weeks of use. It seems that this is not an uncommon experience among the readers here. If I am to understand correctly, an entire string that doesn’t work, cannot be serviced and needs to be returned to CTC for replacement. Also, if one bulb burns out, there is nothing you can do if the lights are not replaceable. Is this correct? Or can I return the entire string for replacement? Also, what can be done re: dimmed lights? The lights were fantastically bright for the first week…then it rained…one string stopped working (thereby affecting all strings) and when the defective string was removed, the remaining functioning strings were severely dimmed. Is there anything that can be done? Thank you for your thoughts and advice.

    Reply
    1. Jeff Ivany Post author

      Hi Jason.

      If you’ve only had a set of Noma LED lights for a couple weeks and they fail then you should return them. There isn’t much you can do with a failed set of lights. Re-wiring the set of lights is a solution but not something I’d recommend for the average home owner as it can be a huge fire hazard.

      Your comment about dimmed lights is sort of unexpected. I have sets that are many years old that have some dimmed lights but typically it’s a single colour (green on my sets) and due to age. In general, LEDs typically only dim if the voltage supplied to them has been reduced. That said, if they have been over driven with too much voltage, that can damage the LED and cause them to dim and eventually fail.

      In your case, the only thing that makes any sense is that the rain caused a short. When this happened, it may have caused an over voltage situation for the remaining lights until that set failed completely.

      It’s a huge pain but if you still have your receipts, I’d return/exchange the lights ASAP.

      Reply
  28. Sandra DeSouza

    I bought 5 sets of lights in 2009 @$25-28 per string. While hanging my lights this year I found 4 strands burnt out.
    I took out the bulbs from the burnt out strands only to find the bulbs and sockets rusted. I went over to Home Depot to find out how to replace the rusted bulbs, only to be told, there was no replacement and there were numerous complaints about the rusted LED lights over the past few years. Home Depot sent me to Canadian Tire to get spares, the Canadian Tire person was extremly rude, she did not know why Home Depot has sent me to them since there was no such thing as replacement bulbs.

    I would like to know how many of you have experienced rusted strands and file a class action suite against NOMA for producing such poor quality lights and not taking full responsibility of their warranty. The lights are costly and should be reimbursed if they fail within the Warranty period.

    Too many of us sit back and allow this fly by night companies to fleece us.

    Reply
  29. Wolf

    I had a few questions ref the LED lights, but after reading the comments all my questions were answered. The bottom line is you have to throw them out. Not really good for the reuse and recycle mentality. NOMA is junk and I will never buy them again……Oh yes, I also don’t have a receipt….. because they were supposed to last forever (right?) lol But Merry Christmas to all anyway…..

    Reply
  30. Barb Renaud

    Just got introduced to a tool called Light Keeper Pro which is fantastic with light problems on pre-lit Christmas tree lights. I thought I would have to replace my 4 year old tree due to having 5 or 6 branches out but with this tool at my lights are now working. They came out with an equivalent tool for LED lights this year which is worth trying I’m sure. BTW we have used the same strings of outdoor lights for about 8 years now without failure but I don’t think they are noma.

    Reply
  31. Jason

    I have had my share of Christmas decorating woes over the years, but the most peculiar one was this year when half the lights I strung up on my house would not light. They were all strung in series, and the lights further down the line were lit, the ones closest to the power source were not. Has anyone encountered that or have any ideas why that might happen? When I took the strings down to replace them, the two new strings that I put up (and tested beforehand to ensure they lit up) did not light up again. one of the older strings I brought down lit up when I tried it again, but the other did not. Suggestions welcome!

    Reply
    1. Jeff Ivany Post author

      That is really odd. Typically if a single set of lights has only half light up, it means that somewhere in the other half there is a burnout bulb or break in the wire. The only thing I’d guess is that it’s a break or a short that is still making a good connection now and then when in the right position. I had a set that would work until it got wet and then it would short out and half the lights would go out. Either way, it’s going to be next to impossible to fix without some electrical know-how.

      Reply

Leave a Reply