hidden holiday costs

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The $9.73 Extra to Make Your Tree Sparkle
You're (rightfully) proud of your cheerful-but-not-Griswoldian holiday lights, tangling and untangling the same strands for a dozen years. But the U.S. Department of Energy estimates that it costs $10 to light a six-foot tree for the season—if you're using incandescent lights.

The solution: Switch to LED bulbs, and you'll bring that cost down to just 27 cents. That may not sound like much, but the same LED string could last you another 40 holiday seasons—that's $390—and your investment will pay off in other ways, too: The cooler LED bulbs are more resistant to breakage, less likely to lead to burned fingers and easier to install.
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