How to Plug in Christmas Lights without an Outdoor Outlet?

Save for later!

One of the more spectacular Christmas decorations is a house festooned with dazzling lights. But with outdoor lights comes the need for an electric outlet and sometimes, this can cause a logistical nightmare. Here are few ways to hang your outdoor lights without an outlet.

How to plug in Christmas lights without an outdoor outlet? Most Christmas lights run on electricity, so you will need an outdoor outlet; however, some houses either don’t have them or have them placed in odd areas. If this is the case for you, you can use an indoor outlet and run an extension cord through a window and then attach your lights. Just be sure to lock the window and insulate the hole.

Other alternatives involve using battery-operated and solar-powered decorations. These can be placed all around your property for a more diverse effect. Finally, you can always purchase a light fixture adaptor. This takes the place of a lightbulb and becomes an extra outlet you can plug your Christmas lights into.

Do you need an outdoor plug for outdoor lights?

Not too long ago, if you wanted to put up Christmas lights outside, you needed an outdoor plug. While you can usually find an outlet by your front door, some houses don’t have one available.

Moreover, if you do have an outdoor plug, this can cause a tripping hazard and even limit what you are able to hang. For example, it’s hard to light up a faraway tree without having a very long extension cord that runs to it.

The good news is that now there are many ways to hang outside lights without using an actual plug. There is no more need for super long extension cords or trying to set up elaborate displays without tripping over wires.

Steps on How to Plug in Christmas Lights without an Outdoor Outlet

If you don’t have an outdoor outlet for your Christmas lights, there are a few steps you can take to remedy the situation.

Select an outlet in your house

Most homes will have a basement and this is a good place to start. Look for an outlet that is near a window.

If you don’t have a basement, you can use a back window. Try not to use an outlet near a window that opens to the front of your home as this is not safe.

While this might not be possible, if the outlet has an on/off switch, it will be much easier to turn your lights off. Don’t despair if this isn’t an option.

Plug in an extension cord

The distance from your inside outlet to where you want to string your Christmas lights will determine how long the extension cord is. This is where you may need to purchase an extra extension cord to avoid having to string multiple smaller cords together.

Place cord outside

You will want to move the extension cord from the outside outlet, through the window, and place it outside. Once this is done, it’s time to take care of the window.

You don’t want cold air to get it, nor do you want easy access for burglars. Use a blanket or similar insulating material and stuff the gap in the window.

Some windows have locks on them, so you can set the lock, even if it is open. If not, place a piece of wood along the windowsill so it can’t be open from the outside.

Hang your lights

Once your extension cord is firmly in place, it’s time to start decorating. Remember to have an extension cord long enough to reach the area you want your lights to start at. Otherwise, you’ll have lights coming through the window.

The good news is that if you use LED Christmas lights with this method, you can attach multiple strings together. LEDs use a lot less electricity, so there is less worry of a breaker shorting.

What can I use I don’t have an outdoor outlet?

There are now many options that take the place of traditional electrical Christmas lights.


The advent of small but powerful batteries has been a real game-changer, especially with Christmas decorations. You can find many displays that are powered by batteries.

Normally, these decorations are pre-created. This means you can find Christmas wreaths and mini trees with their own lights and battery pack.

You can also find lawn ornaments such as reindeer and snowmen that are lit up and have a battery pack. When you have individually powered decorations, you can place them wherever you want, without worrying about an outlet.


Similar to battery-operated ornaments, you can now find solar-powered ones. These work similarly in that a display has its own set of lights and an attached solar panel.

The one issue to remember with solar power is that it needs a bright enough light source for charging. If you live in an area that is always overcast in the winter, it can be hard to power the lights and make them shine bright.

Also, your solar-powered decorations may not turn on until it gets dark enough as most have an automatic sensor. While it normally gets dark in winter by 5 PM, if you want more control over your display, look for a solar panel that you have control over.

Light fixture

If you have a light fixture outside your house, but no outdoor outlet, you can easily tap into this power source. Start by making sure you can access the area where the lightbulb normally goes.

Then, head to your local hardware store and purchase a lightbulb adaptor. This screws into the light fixture but instead of a lightbulb, it has its own plug.

Then, you can attach your string of Christmas lights to the fixture. This works really well if you have either one or no power outlets and want more options when placing your Christmas lights.


Christmas isn’t Christmas without lights. If you don’t have an outdoor outlet, you can use an extension cord from an inside outlet, or purchase alternatives such as batter and solar-powered decorations.

Related Articles:

Save for later!

Leave a Comment