STORAGE & CARE
Learn how to take care of your bulbs,
and protect from inherent vulnerabilities.
If you are using your bulbs seasonally, we recommend taking your lights down and storing them when not in use. The best and safest method for storage is to remove the bulbs from their sockets and return them to the box they came in. If you prefer to avoid that effort, we recommend gently coiling your light strings and storing them in a box with some foam or fabric between layers, being careful to avoid banging them against each other or hard surfaces. Always store your lights in a dry and relatively cool place.
To clean or polish your bulbs, use a damp microfiber towel or other soft cloth. Do not use any abrasive materials as they may scratch the color coatings on your bulbs.
Tru-Tone Bulb bases are resistant to corrosion, but when used outdoors for extended periods brass bases may begin to tarnish, appearing dull or discolored. To remove tarnish use a non-corrosive metal polish and a soft microfiber towel. Be careful not to apply this to the glass part of the bulb to avoid dulling or damaging the color coating.
In order to achieve their authentic look, Tru-Tone bulbs are colored using the same techniques and pigments that were used on vintage incandescent bulbs. All bulbs colored this way are susceptible to fading which is impacted by a wide variety of factors including: sun exposure, length of use, locale, and the color of the bulb itself. Our testing has shown all of our bulbs to be as good or better than the vintage ones they were tested with, and we are constantly looking for ways to improve the quality and longevity of our products while maintaining their important vintage details. That being said, please be aware that nothing is impervious to time and the elements. Here are some things to know about color fading that will help you make the most of your Tru-Tone bulbs.
SUN EXPOSURE: Direct sun exposure is the single greatest factor when it comes to fading. If you choose to use your bulbs outside, try to limit them to areas that receive less direct sun. Take your lights down at the end of the season. Lights that are left up year-round, especially through the summer months, will fade much faster.
EXTENDED USE: Some Jeweltone bulbs may see some fading over time from the light source itself and this may be more noticeable in some colors than others (see below). Limiting their use to the season, and a few hours a day will help you get a lot more life from the color of your bulbs.
COLORS: Some colors will fade more quickly than others. In our experience transparent colors (like those of our Jeweltone bulbs) are more susceptible to fading. In testing our own bulbs, Jeweltone blue has seen the quickest fading from sun exposure. The fading of transparent color coatings is a challenge across all industries that use them, and one that even large corporations like G.E. were unable to resolve completely. Among our Classicolor ceramic-type bulbs, orange will be the first to show signs of fading.
While we are always looking for ways to improve, we are very happy with the current performance and color-fastness of our light bulbs. If some fading happens over time, we think it only adds to their authenticity and vintage charm. If color-fading is a serious concern for you, we hope this info will help you determine how, when, and where to use Tru-Tone bulbs. If any potential fading is unacceptable, we would recommend opting for other LED Christmas lights that use colored diodes as opposed to colored coatings.
Tru-Tone bulbs are sealed with corrosion-resistant bases, however Mother Nature is an unpredictable wild-card and water has a reputation for finding a way. When used outdoors with the bulbs pointed upwards, they are more vulnerable to precipitation damage. In this position any lamp sockets are also more vulnerable. When unable to orient your bulbs in a downward position, you may want to consider the use of inexpensive rubber-o-rings made for E12 and E17 sockets for greater protection.
PROTECTION DURING EXTERIOR INSTALLATION
Tru-Tone bulbs finishes are applied to the exterior of the bulbs and will be scratched by abrasive surfaces such as pavement or roof shingles. Minor scratches are not typically visible or detract from exterior displays, but can be avoided by installing the light bulbs after installing the light strings, or removed first when uninstalling.