One of Surrey’s festive homes boasts a Christmas display featuring thousands of lights. (Submitted photo)

‘Mega’ holiday home displays using up more power: report

Lights, inflatables and other electronic displays have increased B.C.’s power load by 15% since 2012

We’ve been using more and more electricity to decorate our homes for the holidays.

That’s according to a new study from BC Hydro, which said Friday that electronic displays and lights have caused a 15-per-cent uptick in the province’s power load since 2012.

The year before, the outdoor lighting load had dropped about 40 per cent because of the the mass adoption of LEDs, which use 90 per cent less power.

Since then, BC Hydro said, electricity use is up because of people’s increasingly zealous efforts to festoon their homes with everything from the classic light strands to inflatable Santas and reindeer.

One in three British Columbians say they have a neighbour who puts up a “mega display,” the study said.

Another nearly 60 per cent said they themselves put up some form of outdoor holiday lights, with the average homeowner hanging three strands of bulbs.

READ MORE: Deck the halls, not your head: How to safely use a ladder

Inflatable holiday decorations use a lot more power than a strand of LED bulbs, BC Hydro added. Four per cent of respondents said they install more than 750 lights each year, climbing beyond 100,000 lights for the biggest displays.

Fifteen per cent admitted to blowing a breaker switch from overdoing it.

Much of the cost comes from one-third of displays still using older, inefficient incandescent lights – increasing their energy costs and consumption.

Clark Griswold’s infamously radiant home in the film National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation would have cost him around $4,700 in energy using incandescent lights, BC Hydro said. Had he used LEDs, it would have only cost him $50.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

“Does Kirby care?” Heiltsuk Nation using geo-targeted ads in Houston, Texas for justice

The Heiltsuk Tribal Council has called out Kirby Corporation for the Nathan E. Stewart oil spill

“No excuse” for killing of two young grizzly cubs

Reader hopeful someone will come forward with information

UPDATE: U.S. firm fined $2.9M for fuel spill that soiled B.C. First Nation territory

The Nathan E. Stewart spilled 110,000 litres of diesel and heavy oils in October 2016

No delivery services hard on local families

New parents Candace Knudsen and Bjorn Samuelsen spent five weeks away from home

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Body, burning truck found near northern B.C. town

RCMP unsure if the two separate discoveries are related

Couple found dead along northern B.C. highway in double homicide

Woman from the U.S. and man from Australia found dead near Liard Hot Springs

UPDATE: West Kelowna fawn euthanized, not claimed by sanctuary

Gilbert the deer has been euthanized after a suitable home was not found in time

BC Wildfire Service warns wet weather no reason to be complacent

Fire risk currently low for much of B.C. compared to same time over last two years.

Bank of Canada lowers qualifying rate used in mortgage stress tests

Home sales softened last year after the federal government introduced new stress test rules for uninsured mortgages

B.C. man pleads guilty in snake venom death of toddler

Plea comes more than five years after the incident in North Vancouver

Trudeau says Ottawa open to proposals for B.C. refinery as gas prices soar

Prime minister says he knows B.C. residents are struggling and the federal government is open to ideas

Clock’s ticking to share how you feel about Daylight Saving Time in B.C.

Provincial public survey ends at 4 p.m. on Friday

Most Read