Are festoon lights waterproof?

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Planning a spectacular outdoor event or wanting to add a charming ambiance to your garden? Festoon lights, with their timeless aesthetic and warm glow, can transform any outdoor space into a magical wonderland. But here’s the looming question, especially for those residing in areas prone to unpredictable weather patterns: are festoon lights waterproof?

Yes, many festoon lights are designed to be waterproof. However, the degree of water-resistance can vary depending on the product, so it’s important to check the Ingress Protection (IP) rating on your lights. An IP rating indicates the level of protection against solid objects and liquids.

Understanding the waterproof qualities of festoon lights will help you make informed decisions when purchasing and using these delightful products. So, let’s shine some light on this topic, shall we?

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What is an IP rating?

An IP (Ingress Protection) rating is an international standard that defines the degree of protection provided against intrusion from solids and liquids. This rating is crucial when considering outdoor lighting, including festoon lights.

The IP rating consists of two digits. The first digit (ranging from 0-6) relates to the protection against solid objects, while the second digit (ranging from 0-8) represents protection against liquids. Therefore, the higher the IP rating, the greater the level of protection.

How does the IP rating affect festoon lights?

For festoon lights, the IP rating can have significant implications on where and how you can use them. Generally, an IP44 rating or higher is recommended for outdoor lighting. This ensures that the lights are protected against general weather conditions, such as rain.

At James Lighting, our festoon lights usually have an IP44 rating or higher, making them suitable for outdoor use. However, it is crucial to note that waterproof does not mean the lights can be submerged in water.

What happens if festoon lights get wet?

Festoon lights with a suitable IP rating can handle a certain amount of moisture. So, a bit of rain or accidental water splashes shouldn’t affect their performance. However, these lights should not be exposed to heavy, prolonged rainfall or be submerged in water.

At James Lighting, we recommend bringing your festoon lights indoors during extreme weather conditions or if you expect they may be submerged. Safety is always our first concern, and taking such precautions helps ensure a longer lifespan for your lights.


How to care for your waterproof festoon lights?

To ensure your festoon lights maintain their glow for as long as possible, regular care and maintenance are necessary. This involves cleaning the lights with a soft, dry cloth, checking the cords for any damages, and storing the lights properly when not in use.

At James Lighting, we provide detailed care instructions with all our products. With a bit of effort, your festoon lights will continue to shine bright and add that magical touch to your outdoor spaces for years to come.

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Can I use non-waterproof festoon lights outdoors?

While it’s possible to use non-waterproof festoon lights outdoors, it’s not something we recommend at James Lighting. The risk of damage due to weather exposure is too great. This could not only affect the lifespan of your lights but also pose potential safety hazards.

If you must use non-waterproof lights outdoors, ensure they are well-protected from the elements, such as under a canopy or within a waterproof enclosure. However, for peace of mind, it’s best to opt for festoon lights with an appropriate IP rating.


To answer the question – yes, many festoon lighting, including those we manufacture at James Lighting, are indeed waterproof. However, understanding the IP rating system and knowing how to care for your lights is essential for their longevity and safety.

Whether you’re hosting a garden party or creating a cozy outdoor space, waterproof festoon lights can provide the perfect ambiance, come rain or shine. With a little care and attention, your festoon lights will continue to twinkle and bring joy for many seasons to come.

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