Safety Measures to Take While Hanging Christmas Lights
Christmas lights add beauty and magic to any room or outdoor space during the holiday season. As children, we are in awe of their glow, but as adults, we see behind the curtain. We get to a point where we both appreciate the ambiance of holiday lights and fully understand the amount of planning, time, and energy that goes into stringing them up. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, thousands of Christmas decorating-related injuries happen every holiday season which include falls while stringing lights.
Hiring professionals who understand what safety measures to take while hanging Christmas lights is always an option, however, if you decide to string your own holiday lights this year, follow these guidelines to avoid any unnecessary risks.
1. Do not put up outdoor holiday lights if the weather is rainy, icy, or windy.
Why: Using a ladder of any height becomes an unnecessary risk.
2. Inspect light strands for broken bulbs, frayed wires, melted bulb sockets, or missing insulation.
Why: Damaged sockets or loose wires can short circuit and start house fires.
3. Plug-in light strand to test for burnt-out bulbs. Check that your replacement bulb is the correct wattage.
Why: Easier to replace bad bulbs before they are strung up.
4. Do not use indoor lights for outdoor use.
Why: Indoor lights are not made with the same weather-resistant materials and design outdoor lights have. Indoor lights can turn into a fire hazard if exposed to rain, snow, or ice.
5. Plug all outdoor lights into a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlet. If you do not have one located outside your home, contact your local electrician. It’s a worthwhile investment in protecting your home!
Why: GFCIs prevent short circuits or overloads from causing your home’s power from going out and protect against electrical fires.
6. When using a ladder always have a spotter present, keep your body parallel with the ladder, and consider a wooden or fiberglass ladder.
Why: You want the ladder as stable as possible. Using a non-metal ladder will prevent electrical shocks.
7. Keep alive trees well-watered.
Why: A lack of water means a dry tree that is more susceptible to catching fire due to constant and direct contact with electrical lights. Remember, many old Christmas lights radiate heat and may be hot to the touch.
8. Store holiday lights in water-resistant, sealed containers.
Why: If moisture or rodents get ahold of our lights, they will damage them and make them unsafe and unreliable to use.
Ladders safety is important, but there are so many other safety measures you need to take when hanging your holiday lights this year. Never be afraid to ask for assistance (especially while using a ladder). At the end of the day, your friends and family care more for your safety and well-being than they do for twinkle lights.
Should you want a break from stringing lights every holiday season, the Higher Ground Lighting Specialists are here to do just that. We treat your home as if it were our own.
The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. John 1:9-10
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