Essential Home Safety Tips for the Holiday Season: Holiday Light Safety
The smell of freshly baked cookies and the sight of twinkling lights throughout your neighborhood can only mean one thing – the holiday season is here. Decorating your home, opening stockings by the fire, lighting the menorah, or toasting to the New Year with friends and family are festivities many people look forward to every year.
While there is plenty of fun to be had during the holiday season, there’s also an increased chance for something to go wrong if you’re not cautious or well prepared. From home fires and snow damage to theft and home burglaries, there are plenty of problems that can arise. Keep these home safety tips in mind this winter so you can be as safe as possible for the festivities to come.
Emily Huddleston from Redfin has some safety tips to remember this holiday and winter season.
Few traditions are more beloved than stringing lights throughout your home during the holiday season. While lights can certainly put you in the holiday spirit, they can be one of the most dangerous decorations. In fact, holiday lights are responsible for around 40% of Christmas tree fires. Before decking the halls, consider these precautions:
- Replace light strands that are old, fraying, or have exposed wires.
- Never plug more than three strands into one extension cord.
- Never string together multiple extension cords.
- Use light clips rather than nails or screws as they can conduct electricity.
- Secure loose light strands to avoid pulling or tugging by pets or children.
- Use LED lights over incandescent lights; they use less energy and are less likely to start fires from emitting too much heat. LED lights can also save money on energy bills.
- Never run lights through doors or windows.
- Turn off lights when you leave your home, or be sure to keep lights on a timer.
- Keep your tree properly hydrated; dry and dying trees are more likely to result in fires.
More often than not, you’ll need to use a ladder if you plan to decorate outdoor trees, the front of your home, light posts, or any other structure far from the ground. When using a ladder to hang outdoor lights:
- Wear slip-resistant shoes.
- Choose the proper size ladder; don’t attempt to stand on the top of the ladder or stack one ladder on top of another.
- Work with a partner to hold the ladder as an extra safety measure.
- If possible, avoid using metal ladders to prevent an electric shock.
To further prevent accidents during decoration set-up or take-down, consider hiring a professional holiday decorating service in your area. This can be especially helpful if you don’t have the proper tools and equipment to do so yourself.