Putting up lights for the holidays may be more challenging with certain types of exterior walls. Vinyl siding is challenging to hang Christmas lights from because you cannot drill into the walls like you typically would for most light hanging. This means that you must find alternative solutions to nails and drilled hooks.
To attach Christmas lights to vinyl siding, there are multiple hanging options to avoid piercing or damaging the surface:
- Vinyl siding hooks
- Adhesive attachments and suction cups
- Wire hooks
Keep reading to find the best options for attaching Christmas lights to your vinyl siding. The goal in attaching lights is to make sure they will hang securely, meaning you will need supportive hooks and attachments. Even without traditional nails and screws, you can safely hang your Christmas lights on these surfaces.
Attaching Christmas Lights to Vinyl Siding
One of the essential rules in working with vinyl siding is not puncturing holes or drilling nails into the surface. This can become a challenge when working with Christmas lights that usually hang on nails. There are several Christmas light ideas. We have broken down how you can attach Christmas lights to vinyl siding by the method as there are multiple ways to attach them to your home securely.
With any attaching method used, you will need to measure out the distance of lights you plan to hang. This will determine how many hooks you will need to purchase and use. It is recommended that you hang a hook every two feet to hold up your Christmas lights safely. Start closest to the power outlet to prevent added tension or strain on the strands and hooks.
Vinyl Siding Hooks for Christmas Lights
Hooks explicitly created for vinyl siding will be the best way to hang your Christmas lights as they are sturdy and designed to fit between pieces of siding. This method will prevent damage to the siding and is weatherproof to accommodate for winter storms. This is the best option for year-round hooks as they can be held securely in nearly all conditions.
The steps for securing hooks to your vinyl siding will vary by product, but these are the steps to attaching Christmas lights:
- Install hooks: Insert the vinyl siding hook into the horizontal seam where two vinyl siding pieces meet. Do this gently as not to damage the hook or the siding, and then press it into place. It should make a snapping noise once it is in place. Install the hooks closest to the trim near the roof and around the windows for traditional light design.
- Hang lights: Once you have the hooks carefully spaced out along the line you want to hang lights, place the strand on the bottom of each hook. Make sure the strand is stretched but is not too tight to put tension on the hooks.
- Check stability: Double check all hooks and lights throughout the season to make sure they have not moved or become loose. If they are not too visible, you can keep the hooks in place year-round and assess them each year when you hang the lights again.
Using vinyl siding hooks will be the most durable and effective way to hang your Christmas lights on vinyl siding as they are designed specifically for the surface. You can find hooks in both metals and plastics, depending on your preference.
Adhesive Attachments or Suction Cups for Christmas Lights
We placed both of these methods into the same category because they require similar setup methods. Adhesive attachments are typically more secure than suction cups, especially with greater weight. You will need to look at the recommended weight constraints for each product so they do not fall off of the vinyl siding.
To hang Christmas lights with adhesive attachments or suction cups, you will need to:
- Wipe down vinyl siding: For adhesives and suction cups to adhere correctly, you will need to wipe down the vinyl siding surface with soap and water. Wash it off, dry, and then apply rubbing alcohol to the surface. This will help remove any potential grease or grime that is not removed with the soap and water. Rinse and then dry again.
- Attach product: Press the suction or adhesive firmly to the vinyl siding, being sure to remove any air bubbles that may be caught in between the siding and attachment.
- Allow adhesive or suction to set: You should let the adhesive or suction cup sit on the surface overnight before adding any additional weight. This will create a more secure hold on the hooks and prevent lights from falling. Allow for 24 hours before placing the lights on the hooks or abide by product instructions.
- Hang lights: Place the lights on your hooks carefully to avoid disturbing the quality of the attachment. While most lights will not be impacted, you should not hang lights or other items that exceed 12 lbs.
These options are not an ideal solution for adverse weather conditions. We recommend placing more hooks than the 2-foot standard to compensate for any loose suction cups that come undone. If you have textured vinyl siding, adhesive attachments will be a better option as suction cups will not adhere to the siding smoothly.
Wire Hooks for Christmas Lights
Instead of putting the Christmas lights on the vinyl siding itself, you can also take advantage of the soffit located under a roof or overhang. This is located between the meeting point of the siding and the roof on many houses. Attaching from this point will also allow for higher hanging as it is usually at a similar height to the roof’s base.
To hang Christmas lights from wire hooks, follow these simple steps:
- Make or find wire hooks: You can either bend the wire into S-shaped hooks or purchase soffit clips. In either case, make sure the hooks you choose will not rust, which could leave permanent rust marks on your home. The best metals to prevent rust are aluminum and stainless steel because they contain very little iron.
- Attach hooks: Place one end of the hook into the soffit groove, making sure that it is stable. You can also attach these S-hooks to the edge of a gutter if you have one. The hooks should not be able to wobble, which is easiest if you can adjust the hook’s width to clasp around the edge of the soffit.
- Hang the lights: You can either hang Christmas lights directly on the hooks or attach twine or fishing line to the hooks for varied or lower light hanging height. This may also make it easier to hang and remove lights if you do not plan on removing the hooks throughout the year.
Be careful not to scratch the soffits or gutters with the hooks, especially if the ends are sharp. Consider covering the ends in all-weather tape to prevent damage to your home. They may shift in the wind or other rainy conditions, which could be responsible for minor scratches to the surface. This is less likely if the hooks are located under a protected overhang.
While vinyl siding makes hanging Christmas lights a little trickier, it can still be done simply by following the methods mentioned throughout this article. Vinyl siding hooks will be your best option as they are sturdy and will easily fit between the slats. The other techniques are inexpensive but may not be as stable, especially in adverse weather conditions. Be sure to check out our article on how you can hang string lights in your backyard without using trees.