View Full Version : Lead on insulation??

Mike M
12-10-2007, 08:34 PM
CNN dot com has a feature article about lead on the insulation of Christmas light wire. This protects the wire from UV? Is lead all over over SPT wire that we are running through our hands?

Here's how they ended the feature article:

So what's the best way to minimize lead exposure from Christmas lights? Experts say only adults should handle the lights. Wear gloves. The lights should be hung out of children's reach. And follow the instructions on the box: "Wash hands after use"

Wash hands after handling Christmas lights??????

Jason Rose
12-10-2007, 09:39 PM
Seems that people in California have found a way to get cancer from Christmas lights... Leave it to the fruits and nuts to give us a warning label telling us we can die from our lights.

I've been stringing thousands and thousands of lights, every season, for the last 20 years... ( I started young!) and I'm quite sure I don't have any more lead in me from that then when I touched some paint in an old house.

12-10-2007, 11:14 PM
Lead is serious business when ingested, especially by children whose brains are still developing.

I have read the warnings on strings of Christmas lights the last few years and I do wash my hands after using them (not commercially).

According to the CNN story "...Lead is used legally to stabilize polyvinyl chloride so it does not crack or crumble with age. The lead also acts as a fire ******ant...."

I had heard it was used in vinyl siding and blinds, and that dust from these as they age is not good to breathe.


INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
12-11-2007, 12:14 AM
Gregg, you are such a granola peddler! :)

Thank you for bringing this information to us. We are in the process of having all of our 12/2 wire supplies switched over from non-CSA to CSA rated here in Ontario. As such, we have an opportunity to work with the manufacturer in getting the wire spec. we want. (foot markings, CSA Markings, Jacket composition, etc)

I will make some inquiries to see if they use lead in the PVC jacket of the 12/2 wire here.

Thanks again.

12-11-2007, 01:24 AM
Maybe that's what's lacking in your No-Ox cable that cracks in the cold? :)

The article did say that calcium or zinc (I think) could be used instead of lead, but that it's more expensive.

12-11-2007, 01:34 AM
Gregg, you are such a granola peddler! :)

I'm not that big a fan of granola anyway. This time of year I like old fashioned, thick, lumpy, stick-to-your-ribs oatmeal.

Although yesterday morning down in Monterey I had fresh and tasty Dungeness crab and avocado eggs benedict. We dropped a friend off at a conference there and spent the rest of the day at the Monterey Bay Aquarium for the first time in a long while.


INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
12-11-2007, 01:42 AM
Remind me to ship you down a big block of ice sometime this winter!

Mike M
12-11-2007, 07:11 AM
Thanks again

You're welcome. I taught special education for 12 years and I'm sick of hearing how lead is still out there in the manufacturing process. Also, "acceptable" levels of mercury bothers me, too. A few years ago the Wall Street Journal ran an article on the front page of a brilliant child that ate his favorite lunch every day, tuna fish, until he ended up requiring some hefty resource services in school.