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String lights are a traditional part of outdoor holiday decorating, but their appeal extends beyond a holiday season. Today’s outdoor string lights feature an array of bulb sizes, brightness levels, and even color options, and they’re well suited to nighttime entertaining any time of year. The best outdoor string lights are durable, made to weather the elements, and are easy to hang or attach to siding, trees, or columns.
I tested the Feit Electric String Lights—one of today’s trending models—to determine whether they live up to their reputation and manufacturer’s claims. Keep reading to determine how the lights performed in my comprehensive hands-on testing, and find out whether these string lights are a good option for your outdoor lighting goals.
Feit Electric String Lights: At a Glance
- Heavy-duty, flexible cord
- Attractive, Edison-style bulbs
- Two extra bulbs
- Wide socket spacing
- No fuse
- Only 24 bulb sockets
Get the Feit Electric String Lights at:
What Are Feit Electric String Lights?
When I opened the box of Feit lights, I was disappointed that they were not shipped in the manufacturer’s box that was shown online. Whether or not that means the lights I received were used and repackaged—I don’t know. They looked new, and I could find no evidence of prior use. I would have liked to read the manufacturer’s specs that are typically located on the box, but paper installation instructions were included that offered ample information.
The string of Feit lights is relatively heavy, weighing in at just under 9 pounds for a 48-foot cord and 24 bulb sockets. The cord is impressive—made from heavy-duty rubber that’s very flexible. The Feit lights are billed for safe use either indoors or outdoors.
The bulbs themselves are attractive, featuring an elongated Edison-style shape that gives them decorative appeal as well as offering outdoor illumination.
How Easy Are the Feit Electric String Lights to Set Up?
In my experience hanging string lights, the simplest types of lights to hang are those that feature gutter clips—clips on each socket that allow the user to attach the socket to the edge of a roof gutter or a cord or wire. The Feit lights do not come with clips. Instead, each bulb socket hangs about 3.5 inches below the heavy rubber cord, and the socket wire is sealed with a waterproof plastic connector. At the top of the connector is a small hole, about ⅛ inch in diameter.
To hang the lights on a structure, as I did on the gable of my she-shed, I first had to insert small hooks that were evenly spaced to hold the cord. This is a helpful way to create a uniform lighting pattern. Unfortunately, due to the small dimensions of the she-shed, the 24-inch space between the bulb sockets would have been too broad to create a pleasing effect, so I coiled the cord between every other socket to add more lights and additional illumination.
Another way to hang them would be to use wires threaded through the provided holes and then attach the Feit light strand to overhead poles or cables.
How Much Illumination Do the Feit Electric String Lights Provide?
Each LED bulb in the Feit string is a 1-watt bulb. Together, the entire string provides 24 watts of LED illumination. That may not sound like much light, but keep in mind that LED bulbs are brighter than their incandescent equivalents. The 24 watts of the Feit string light are about equal to the brightness emitted by a 70-watt incandescent bulb. However, the light intensity is dispersed over the length of the cord, which is 48 feet. Depending on how you hang the lights, the overall illumination effect will differ. When the lights were looped closely over a bar, I was able to sit on a chair beneath them and read a book long after dark.
There is a significant upside to this particular string of lights in comparison to some of the other string lights we tested for our Best Outdoor String Lights review and guide: the Feit lights are connectable. This means that each strand of Feit lights features both a male end and a female end, so additional strands of lights can be attached to add more bulbs and more illumination. The manufacturer claims that up to 45 strings of Feit lights can be connected.
Another nice aspect of the Feit string lights is that they’re compatible with a dimmer. I connected them to an exterior extension cord with a built-in dimmer, and I adjusted the light intensity down to a faint glow.
Is It Safe to Use the Feit Electric String Lights Outdoors?
The Feit string lights are designed to resist damage from rain—and as it happened—we had a small rainstorm one night while the Feit lights were hung on the she-shed gable. I plugged them in the next night, and they came right on.
One slight downside to the Feit string lights is that they don’t contain a fuse in the cord. Some of today’s connectable string lights have fuses that will blow rather than overloading your home’s electrical panel, which can lead to overheating, an electrical short, or even a fire. The manufacturer’s safety instructions say to plug the cord into a GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) outlet if you’re using the lights outdoors. Using a GFCI outlet will reduce the risk of electrical shock in case the electricity jumps the circuit.
The combination of water-resistant bulb sockets and the use of a GFCI will eliminate most of the risk of electrical shock when using the Feit bulbs, but these lights are not intended for use in or near standing water, such as a pool, so use them with care. Don’t change burned-out bulbs when it’s raining, and do not allow the cord to become submerged. If you need to use an extension cord, choose an outdoor-rated 12-gauge or 14-gauge extension cord.
Are the Feit Electric String Lights Worth the Cost?
On both Amazon and at COSTCO, the current price for the Feit strings lights is $59.99, but online pricing is likely to fluctuate by season and demand.
Of all the sets of string lights I tested for the Best Outdoor String Lights guide, I would say the Feit lights are among the top options for Edison-style LED lights of similar wattage. They certainly had the heftiest cord, and they’re very bright per bulb at 1 watt, although the wide spacing of the bulbs offers just 24 bulbs per 48 feet of cord.
The Feit Electric String Lights are similar in price to competitive models, although I found a couple of selections that looked nearly identical on Amazon that ran about $20 less. However, I can’t say whether or not those other strands have the same robust rubber cord.
I feel that the Feit string lights are slightly on the pricey side, given that they don’t include a fuse in the cord, but other than that, they’re very well made. Plus, the bulbs are shatterproof—I know, I dropped them on the concrete patio—which gives them a durability advantage over string lights with glass bulbs.
Are the Feit Electric String Lights Right for You?
A single strand of outdoor string lights can extend outdoor entertaining after dark or create an inviting space for evening receptions and get-togethers. If you’re looking for a durable set of string lights to illuminate a patio or deck, the Feit lights will impart both illumination and a warm, golden-ish hue that adds a measure of ambience. By using the lights with a dimmer, you can adjust the intensity down to a soft romantic glow, and the Feit lights were selected as being the Best Dimmable set of string lights in our larger string light review.
However, the Feit lights feature only 24 bulbs. If you’re looking for more bulbs, additional Feit string lights can connect and extend the number of bulbs, or another option may be a set with more bulbs, such as the Banord LED Outdoor String Lights from our comprehensive review. Many other string light options that we tested are also available, including color-changing string lights and tiny fairy lights to create a lovely centerpiece.
Where to Buy Feit Electric String Lights
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