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Christmas Lighting Safety Tips

by Hickerson Brothers on December 7, 2017

Temperatures are going down, but Christmas lights are going up! Decorating the house with colorful Christmas lights helps to create a festive mood for the season. The dynamic illumination brings out joyfulness, especially when bundling up next to the fire with hot cocoa. While enjoying the sights of holidays, you should also practice Christmas lighting safety. Since many of us are spending hours hanging up lights, chances of accidents are higher. It is important to know the associated risks of hanging lights, and how to prevent danger to you, your family, and your home.

Hickerson Brothers believes Virginia homeowners should be able to enjoy their holiday lights with peace of mind. Since our specialty involves lighting, we have used our experience to document the best Christmas lighting safety tips.

Examine Your Lights

  • Before hanging up your Christmas lights, you must examine them thoroughly.
  • Check lights for any broken or defective bulbs, and make sure each bulb has no loose connections.
  • When replacing bulbs, make sure to match the correct wattage, otherwise the bulb will not work properly.
  • Older, incandescent Christmas lights don’t last as long as LED lights, and should be replaced if you see signs of age.
  • Examine cords for any cracks, tears, or frayed wire to avoid a short circuit.
  • If the cords are frayed or damaged, then replacement may be your best option.
  • Although using outdoor Christmas lights for indoors is generally safe, do not use indoor lights for outdoor lighting, as they are not manufactured to withstand the elements.

Practice Ladder Safety

  • Whether you’re hanging lights on your house or wrapping them around the Christmas tree, ladder safety must always be practiced.
  • Inspect your ladder for any damage or wobbling before using.
  • Always place your ladder on level ground, and make sure each leg has firm contact with the floor.
  • Make sure your ladder is locked before stepping on it.
  • Always have someone stand at the bottom of the ladder as you climb it.
  • Never stand on the top three steps of a ladder, and only one person may be on the ladder at a time.
  • Never lean too far while on a ladder, instead, climb down and move the ladder entirely.
  • Comply with the weight limit of the ladder, which includes moving your tools off the ladder if necessary.

Practice Extension Cord Safety

  • Since extension cords are used heavily for Christmas lighting, you must proceed with caution.
  • Tape down any ground-level extension cords to prevent tripping.
  • Do not use indoor extension cords outside, as they have little protection from the outdoors.
  • If an extension cord is overheating when in use, that means they cannot carry the load and must be replaced with a stronger extension cord.
  • Keep extension cords away from water and snow at all times, and put them inside if it begins to rain or snow.
  • If you are plugging your extension cord into a two-prong outlet, do not use any appliances with three prongs as this can cause shock.

Proper Lighting Storage

  • After about 2 months, your Christmas lighting should be stored to retain its durability.
  • Wrap your cords properly to avoid tangled and stretched wires.
  • Use a cardboard cylinder to wrap your Christmas lights around, and then use tape or a twist tie to secure it.
  • Place your Christmas lights in a sealed and protected container to avoid water damage.
  • For added protection, put your wrapped Christmas lights in a bag before storing it in a container, as this will further prevent water damage or deterioration.

Enjoy putting up your Christmas lights with our holiday lighting safety tips. When dealing with other lighting in your home, let Hickerson Brothers be your guide! For over 35 years, we have been the premier electrical company in Catlett, and provide quality indoor and outdoor lighting services for the benefit of Virginia homeowners. Give us a call at 703-594-3913 to schedule an appointment with your trusted electricians.