10 Tips to Avoid Holiday Lighting Mishaps

holiday lightingThe holiday season is a time for parties and joy but also a time of stress so don’t forget your common sense-especially if you are dealing with electricity. Simple safety precautions for holiday lighting will help you create an accident-free holiday lighting display.

  1. Buy lights and cords that are specifically rated for outdoor use. Do not assume all holiday lighting strings are labeled for outdoor. Be sure to check the label on packaging or tag on the lights.
  2. Extension cords should be heavy duty and the proper gauge for your electrical current. The higher the gauge, the smaller the wire and the less current the cord can handle. Although miniature lights do not carry much power, adding multiple sets to extension cords can add up.
  3. Don’t overload electrical currents. Reduce loads by disconnecting units in your electrical display or turn off appliances or lights in the house connected to the same circuit.
  4. Always turn off and unplug lights before working on lights.
  5. Replace burned out bulbs. Dead bulbs interfere with electrical flow and empty sockets are an invitation for children’s fingers.
  6. Keep cords and wiring out of walkways.
  7. Don’t let bulbs touch anything that ignites quickly. Tree lights should be turned upside down so the bulb is pointing toward the ground and away from the branches.
  8. Use a good strong ladder, a fall could mean a disaster.
  9. Never use a stapler, nails, or screws to put up your lights. These can pierce and damage the cord and may lead to electrocution. Instead, use insulated hooks when you put up your outdoor lights.
  10. Don’t use lights that are too old. Newer lights come equipped to guard against short circuiting. Older lights don’t have fused plugs and may spark if there is a short circuit problem. If you can feel the heat from your Christmas lights, they are probably older. Modern light strings don’t go out when one bulb is shot. This makes replacement much simpler.

The above tips are in no way all inclusive but just a few tips to keep in mind. Generally speaking, holiday lighting is relatively safe but if holiday lighting seems like a daunting task, let Dallas North handle your design, installation, tear down and storage of your lights this holiday season. We want your Christmas to be filled with joy and for you to experience a less stressful and accident free holiday season.