Christmas Light Safety: Tips for the Home

It’s the week of Thanksgiving, which means the winter holiday festivities are right around the corner. For those of you who celebrate Christmas, this means rummaging through last year’s bin full of Christmas lights for the exterior of your home, including the interior home decorations and the Christmas tree lights. But before you string lights up on your house and on your tree, we would like to take a few minutes of your time to go over some Christmas light safety tips to ensure you and your family have a safe and happy holiday. According to the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association), a study conducted between 2009 to 2013 revealed that an average of 210 U.S. home fires PER YEAR were started by Christmas tree lights. Additionally, 860 home fires PER YEAR were started because of other holiday decorations (not including Christmas tree lighting). Be smart and read about our Christmas light safety tips so that your home doesn’t become one of the statistics mentioned above!

 

christmas light safety

 

Christmas Tree Lighting Safety Tips

  • Make sure when purchasing new lights at a store that they are labeled for indoor use when decorating a tree that is placed in your home (some are for outdoor or indoor use only).
  • Make sure when purchasing new lights that they have a label indicating that they were tested safely by the UL (Underwriters Laboratory).
  • Check your old OR NEW lights for any broken or frayed cords, or loose bulb connections. Replace a string of lights if you see any of these.
  • You should NOT use anymore than 3 sets of string lights per extension cord, and only one extension cord should be used per outlet.
  • Do NOT use electric lights on a metallic tree.
  • Do NOT run electrical cords under rugs.
  • Keep cords away from the tree’s water source
  • Remember to turn off your Christmas tree lights when you go to bed and when you leave the house, and…
  • Set a timer (not only could this prevent a potential fire when the lights are left unattended, but this saves energy and costs on your electricity bill).
  • Always follow the manufacturer instructions when installing your Christmas lights

christmas light safety

 

Outdoor Christmas Light Safety Tips

  • Make sure your Christmas lights for your home are labeled for outdoor use.
  • Make sure when purchasing new lights that they have a label indicating that they were tested safely by the UL (Underwriters Laboratory).
  • Your lights should be plugged into a GFCI outlet to be grounded in case of an electrical overload.
  • Hang the cords on your house with hooks or clips, but NOTHING that will puncture the cords like nails or staples.
  • Replace any damaged or broken bulbs or cords.
  • Do not place lights on outdoor trees that are close to power lines.
  • Use extension cords that have three-pronged plugs, and that are labeled for outdoor use.
  • Set a timer (not only could this prevent a potential fire when the lights are left unattended, but this saves energy and costs on your electricity bill).
  • Always follow the manufacturer instructions when installing your Christmas lights