Your fairy lights are broken. Now what?

So your holiday fairy lights are half lit or shorted. Now what?

CBC’s Hallie Cotnam faced this seasonal dilemma as she recently installed fairy lights she bought last year. Much of the lights were not working.

“I was so frustrated because, unlike my habit, I had carefully put them back on their original roll,” Cotnam told CBC Radio. Ottawa morning. “There was no reason they couldn’t work.”

Cotnam contacted Premji Kerai of Ottawa whom she describes as “an electric wizard”.

Kerai, a decades-long aircraft maintenance technician with Transport Canada, told her that fixing her headlights wasn’t too difficult, but it took a little patience.

“The Christmas lights are wired in such a way [that] not many people know that, ”he said.

After drawing complicated diagrams for Cotnam showing how the fairy lights are wired, Kerai simplified the problem: One failed bulb can bypass an entire segment of the fairy lights, he said, so you have to find the bulb. defective.

Premji Kerai drew this diagram for CBC’s Hallie Cotnam to describe how fairy lights are wired. (Hallie Cotnam / CBC)

“With this type of connection, you have to remove each one of them, and either test it with a meter, or remove one and put a known good one, and then move on,” he explained. “Keep going until you find the right one.”

It takes a lot of work, Premji admitted, especially if your fairy lights are longer.

“Or I could throw it out and buy new ones, and just eat the $ 50 I spent on them last year,” Cotnam said.

Premji Kerai of Ottawa says fixing fairy lights takes patience, but it’s a simple process. (Hallie Cotnam / CBC)

Be respectful of the environment

Cotnam reached out to nurse Jennifer Cleland, also a self-proclaimed handyman, for a second opinion.

Cleland studied electrical engineering before changing her profession, and now she’s offering to fix your half-working fairy lights for a small price – and avoid them going to the landfill.

I try to lead by example and show that it is possible to fix things instead.– Jennifer Cleland, light garland repairer

“I saw him everywhere, especially in the hospital. There is so much garbage, ”said Cleland, who lives in Petawawa, Ont.

“There’s this general attitude these days where things are cheaper, they break more easily. Just throw them away and buy a new one. So I’m trying to lead by example and show that it is possible to fix things instead. “

Cleland charges $ 10 per channel.

“I’m trying to make it worth it for both of us – it’s cheap enough that maybe you can get it fixed instead of buying a new one, and that’s a small change. extra in my pocket. “

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