Although the holidays are the most delightful time of the year, you might be astonished to find that the Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that every day during the Christmas season in the U.S., 160 accidents associated to decorating occur. Don’t worry; with a few safety tips for Christmas lights, you may decorate the house without worrying. Read on for advice on how to safely set up and store your favorite decorations.
Don’t Plug in Too Many Lights
This year, if you want to go all out with your Christmas decorations, be sure you have enough electrical equipment (correctly rated power strips and overall amp power) to support your ideas.
Make sure your Christmas lights are powered by a secure source of electricity. If you plug in more lights than the outlet can handle, you risk exceeding the electrical load limit and damaging circuits (or worse). You should be aware that it is dangerous to plug Christmas light strands into power strips that are connected to extension cords that go to a wall socket.
Don’t Leave Lights on Too Long
Holiday lights that are left on for too long run the risk of overheating. As a result, it’s a good idea to turn off your lights before going to bed and to avoid leaving them on all day. Even LED lights, which are renowned for remaining cool, can overheat under specific conditions and cause disastrous events like fires if they are kept on for an extended period of time.
Consider hiring a Christmas lights installation specialist if your design is overwhelming. They can help you set up your lights and setup your controller for simple on/off control.
Label Outdoor Lights for Outdoor Use
Christmas lights for indoor and outdoor use should not be combined. Less insulation is used when manufacturing indoor Christmas, so they’ll be less protected from fading caused by sunlight, extreme weather, or normal outdoor wear and tear.
To ensure your Christmas lights are as safe as possible, keep your interior and outdoor lights apart and always look for the Underwriter’s Laboratories (UL) seal.
Consider Switching to LED Christmas Lights
LED lights have many wonderful advantages. According to energy.gov, ENERGY STAR-rated LED bulbs use 75% less energy and can last up to 25 times longer than incandescent bulbs.
More energy-efficient bulbs may be up to 95% more efficient and last hundreds of hours longer, especially in smaller bulbs like those used in Christmas string lights.
Inspect Your Bulbs Annually
Bulb testers assist you identify which light is the dead bulb and locations of your issues in your strand (or if the whole strand is no longer usable). A Christmas light bulb tester is available online for less than $20. It’s a wise investment, particularly if you’re putting on a huge holiday light display.
Many bulb testers include a repair kit and replacement bulbs so you can quickly remedy the problem and save from frequently purchasing new light strings.
Just make sure the type of lights you purchase and the bulb tester you purchase are compatible. For LED Christmas lights, for instance, a tester for LED bulbs should be used.
Keep Christmas Light Strands Off the Ground
Keep Christmas decorations off the ground as much as you can, especially outside. Be sure to carefully consider your design plans if you have young children or curious animals.
Potential issues include:
- Snowdrifts or puddles damaging your lights.
- Wildlife gnawing on cables.
- Trips and falls that result in injuries.
Strands of exposed light bulbs on the ground are a recipe for disaster. If necessary (depending on the placement of outlets), fasten lights to the ground with duct tape. Make sure your lights are clearly marked to prevent problems of this nature.
Practice Proper Ladder Safety
Many Christmas-related injuries occur while hanging lights and decorations. Practicing excellent ladder safety includes:
- Inspecting your ladder before climbing it.
- Avoid using your ladder while it’s raining or during adverse weather.
- Keeping three points of contact while hanging decorations from the ladder.
Using a wooden ladder is advised, especially while installing Christmas lights. Because metal conducts electricity, using an aluminum ladder to hang lights might be risky.
Safely Dispose of Old or Broken Christmas Lights
Don’t dispose of Christmas lights that are broken or old. In addition to being bad for the environment, damaged bulbs in a trash bag can be dangerous.
Christmas lights that are broken or not working properly can be turned in during a specific drop-off period that recycling services in the majority of cities and counties normally set up. You don’t need to worry about whether your Christmas lights are incandescent or LED because the majority accept both types.
Don’t Let Your Christmas Tree Linger Too Long
Your safety and the security of your home are at risk from dried-out Christmas trees with holiday lights on them. Unbelievably, the National Fire Protection Association reports that between 2015 and 2019, there were an average of 160 home fires per year in the United States that were sparked by Christmas trees. During that time, the total cost of damages was $10 million every year.
January 2 and January 6 are the two most common dates of the year to get rid of a Christmas tree. Try not to let yours linger for too long, and if you do, be sure to water it frequently.
Store Your Christmas Lights Safely
Once the holidays are over, store your lights securely to avoid broken bulbs this year and the following. To prevent rodents and other pests from chewing through the wires in your Christmas lights, make sure to properly arrange them in a box or bin before taping it shut.
Wrapping individual cardboard pieces with Christmas lights is another secure, efficient method of storing and organizing the lights. Cut cardboard into rectangular or anvil-shaped pieces, and then wrap a set of lights around each one. Then you may tape the end down and stack them flat on top of one another for storage.
Stay up to date with us during the holidays on Facebook!