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How to Keep Light Strings From Tangling

Christmas is over and that means it’s time to pack away all of the decorations for next year. It’s sad but inevitable!

Worried that packing them away will be much more stressful than bringing them out? You’re not alone. Packing decorations away always seems to be harder than unpacking, especially when it comes to the light strings. Don’t let it stress you out, though! There are ways to keep light strings from tangling in storage so that next year decorating will be a breeze.

For more information on how to keep light strings from tangling in storage, keep reading below.

Pack light strings correctly

It may be tempting to just throw all the lights into a box and worry about it later. However, this always leads to frustration and anger in the long run. Even though you really don’t want to, packing the light strings correctly now will make future you much more happy. Want to know how to do it? Below are 5 different (and easy!) ways to pack your light strings and keep them from tangling:

Cord reel

This is the most obvious of answers and the easiest. If you have a ton of LED Christmas lights that you’d like to store away neatly, purchase some cord reels. These are typically used for long extension cords but can be used for lights too. You can find them at most home improvement stores but fair warning, they are more expensive than other light storage methods. If you have a large number of lights, they are a great option. However, you should consider a cheaper alternative like the ones below if budget is more important. 


Ever wondered how to get your lights back together again, the way they were packaged when you got them? If so, you’re in luck. It’s entirely possible by following the process called bunching. While easy, bunching is a bit more time consuming. However, it’s worth it when your lights stay untangled.

To bunch your lights back together, grab one end of the light string. Then, grab the light two lights away and group them together in your hand. Keep grabbing every other light and bunching together until you have a nice, neat bundle in your hands. Then either zip tie or rubber band them together for storage.


Do you have excess cardboard left over from gifts? Don’t throw it all away! You can reuse the cardboard from boxes to store your LED Christmas lights for the year ahead. All it takes is a little bit of time and some DIY crafting.

To use cardboard for light strings, cut out rectangles that are approximately 12in x 6in. Cut a notch on one side and secure one end of the light string inside it. Then, wrap the cord around the cardboard. When you reach the other side, cut another notch for the end. Secure with tape and use bubble wrap or tissue paper to stack them in storage. Next Christmas, lighting will be a breeze!

Clothes hanger

If you don’t have any extra cardboard sitting around, don’t worry. Similar to the cardboard option, you can also use a simple clothes hanger to keep your light strings from tangling. Use a piece of tape to secure one end of the light string to the hanger. Then wrap the lights around the hanger and secure the other end with tape as well. When done, make sure to wrap the hangers in bubble wrap. This will protect the lights from breaking in storage.

Zip ties

Hoping for a minimalist storage option for your Christmas light strings? Why not use plain old zip ties? This method is the easiest option by far. Just get a bundle of zip ties from your local home improvement store. When ready, grab one end of the light string in your hand, then begin wrapping the strand around your wrist and elbow. In other words, wrap them like you would wrap up the vacuum cord. 

When you’ve wrapped the light strings, lay them gently on the floor. Then, use zip ties to secure the strands together. That’s it, no hassle! Be warned, sometimes unwrapping the lights in this packing option can cause tangling, so make sure to take your time when unraveling them next year. 

And there you have it – with one these 5 easy storage options, you’re sure to become a packing expert on light strings this holiday season and all of the seasons to come!

Ask an expert

Do you have questions regarding LED light strings and how to store them? No problem! At LED Lights Unlimited, we consider ourselves lighting experts. We can answer any questions you have and offer more advice on how to store your light strings after the holidays. We can also offer great advice on which types of LED light strings to invest in. Need patio string lights, commercial LED lights, or something else? We’ve got it!

So what are you waiting for? Give us a call today, we’ll help you with all of your lighting needs!

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