If you don’t have to reach higher than 2 stories, you can hang your Christmas lights from the ground – no ladder needed – whether you need to attach them to gutters or shingles all you need is a telescoping pole and the right clips.
Ladders are dangerous if you’re not careful. Each year 500,000 people are treated for injuries in the United States from ladder falls – and 300 people die according to the CDC.
The process varies depending on what you’re trying to hang it on and some pole methods make it tough to make it work – particularly if you’re trying to hang the lights on the 2nd story.
In this article you’ll learn:
- The equipment you need to hang christmas lights without a ladder
- Different methods you can use depending on the height and type of roof or gutters you have
- How to hang christmas lights on a tall tree without a ladder
Here are some other Christmas light hanging scenarios that I’ve covered as well: How to hang Christmas lights on a roof without gutters, How to Hang Christmas Lights on Gutters with Gutter Guards, How to Hang Christmas Lights Without a Ladder, and How To Hang Christmas Lights on a House with a Metal Roof
How to Hang Christmas Lights Without a Ladder
Hanging Christmas lights can be a highlight of the holiday season, but it can also be a challenging and sometimes dangerous task, especially when you’re trying to reach high places without a ladder.
Fortunately, there are several techniques and tools that you can consider to hang your Christmas lights with both feet firmly on the ground.
(Some of the below links are affiliate links which means I get paid a bit if you click through and buy something — it doesn’t add anything to your cost! Just helps keep the lights on.)
Preparations for Hanging Christmas Lights
Before you begin, it’s essential to select the right type of lights and extension cords that are safe for outdoor use. Perform a risk assessment and consider any potential safety issues that could arise during installation. Make sure the weather is right and not too windy; clear walkways and secure any loose items that might get in your way.
Choosing the Right Equipment
To hang Christmas lights without a ladder, here’s what you’ll need:
- Light hanging pole: This can be a DIY setup using a broomstick or similar pole with a standard threaded end or a purchased telescoping pole that can reach up to a second-floor roofline. For a simple setup over a one-story house, a broomstick might suffice, but higher installations will benefit from a professional-quality telescoping pole.
- Light clips: You will need clips designed for use with your chosen pole and appropriate for the specific parts of your house, whether it’s gutters, shingles, or fascia boards.
- No Ladder Light Hanging Clips (Amazon Affiliate Link)
Methodology for Hanging Christmas Lights
- Windows and Doors: Use adhesive clips to hang lights around windows and door frames without the need for a ladder.
- Gutters: Attach a clip to the end of the pole, run the light strand through the clip, and then extend the pole up to your gutter and secure the clip onto the front lip.
Here are some clips you can use that thread onto a broom handle:
- 25 Count Box of Clear No Ladder Gutter and Shingle Clips
- Designed For Use With The No Ladder Light Hanging System (Sold Separately) But The Clip Can Be Screwed On To Any Threaded-End Pole
- Hang Lights Faster, Safer and Easier in ¼ The Time From The Ground
- Allows You To Decorate Your Roof Line From The Ground Using Any Threaded-End Extension Pole
- Decorates Up To 50' Feet When Spaced 2' Feet Between Each Clip (Recommended Spacing-18-24" Inches)
- Overhangs and Eaves: Utilize the telescoping pole and clips, come in at an angle and secure the lights to your fascia.
- Using Poles and Grabbers: For higher reach like second-story installations or tall trees, you might need a more extended telescoping pole.
- The FASTEST, EASIEST, and SAFEST way to decorate your gutters, shingles or eaves with holiday lights.
- Pole extends up to 11 feet to offer assistance for hanging and uninstalling holiday lights, decor on gutters, shingles & eaves, as well décor in trees shrubs, wreaths, bows or other products that are unattainable from the ground. No more climbing on chairs or stairs!
- Includes 25 Gutter, Shingle, Eaves Combo Clips
- Not limited to holiday decorating purposes only but to help simplify everyday home decor or other home application needs
- Includes one pole and 25 clips. For use indoors and outdoors
Beware with this method, it doesn’t work for everyone and some people have problems with both the pole and the hooking the hooks on the strings. The main difficulty is that you either have to hook the string way up in the air or you put the hooks on before-hand and then have to somehow hook on to the clips from the ground.
I think in this case you’d have to put the hooks on far enough apart on the strings that you can both put the hook on the string AND put it on the end of the pole at the same time on the ground. This will lead to strands that hang down a bit if the gutter or roofline is very high up. But if it’s just a first story, it could work fine.
Here’s one method you can try by modifying the clips:
Or you can just rest the string in the clip like this guy does:
- Working from Inside Windows: If possible, work from inside by installing hooks or clear clips around windows.
- Tossing Strands from Below: With the use of throwing weights, you can toss light strands to hook over branches or parts of the building structure.
Alternative Techniques for Hanging Christmas Lights
If you’re planning to decorate a tall tree, consider these approaches:
- Using a Telescoping Pole with a Hook: Reach the top of the tree with an extended pole that has a hook on the end to position the lights.
- Utility Hook can be used in countless ways such as installing holiday lights, hanging bird feeders and wind chimes, closing tall vents or window blinds (shutters), boating, hanging clothes & more! Makes hard to reach spots a breeze such as truck beds, conveyor belts, or rock climbing.
- SAVE TIME, SKIP THE LADDER – REACH UP TO 25 FEET WHEN STANDING – Included is an Eversprout Extension Pole (6.5 to 18 ft) and Utility Hook (4” x 3” x 1”).
- 1 YEAR WARRANTY, 1 TREE PLANTED WITH EVERY ORDER
- Using a Downspout: Fashion a homemade pole using a downspout with duct-taped edges for safety. Thread rope and lights through the downspout, using it to loop lights over branches.
For a more permanent solution, install hooks under roof overhangs where lights can be affixed year after year. Or, if you’re comfortable with heavy machinery, renting a cherry picker gives you high reach without a ladder.
Cherry Picker Rental at The Home Depot for example.
Safety Precautions and Best Practices
While these methods help you avoid ladder use, they still require precautions. Here are some best practices:
- Electrical Safety: Always ensure lights and cords are rated for outdoor use and inspect them for damage before hanging.
- Stability: Double-check the stability of poles and clips while hanging lights to prevent them from coming loose.
- Weatherproofing: Protect connections and lights against moisture and use covers for outdoor sockets to prevent electrical hazards.
And here are some more pro tips:
- Take a photo of your light display. You can use it as a guide when you recreate the design next year.
- Store lights on a hose reel or cardboard spool to avoid tangles and make next year’s setup easier.
- Think beyond the roofline. Balance your display with lights on lower elements like porches and backyard structures to create a cohesive design
- Check the weather before you start hanging lights. Choose a clear and relatively warm day to ensure a smooth installation process.
- Set up timers for your lights to avoid manually plugging and unplugging them, ensuring that your display turns on and off automatically.
- Always follow safety advice carefully, such as using extension poles instead of ladders and avoiding decorating trees that touch power lines.