If you’re decorating for Christmas this weekend we’ve got some simple light hanging tips that are great safety reminders.
1. Use the Proper Lights – If you hang lights outdoors make certain that they are rated for outdoor use. The packaging should clearly mark indoor/outdoor. The lights must be weatherproof or else they will short out and could be a hazard.
2. Get Grounded – Outdoor lights should be connected to a grounded outlet and the best option is a GFCI outlet that has a built in fuse. If there is an overload the outlet will turn off instead of causing a fire. It also will hopefully save the fuses in your lights from burning out.
3. Hang Carefully – When you are hanging lights stay away from using anything that may pierce the cords such as staples or nails. Instead opt for plastic clips or just wrap the cords around a nail or hook. These string hooks are perfect.
4. Replace Bulbs – If you have any damaged bulbs replace them. It not only looks bad to hang lights that are out but it wastes energy. The broken glass can also be hazardous to small children and pets.
5. Avoid Heat - Do not wrap lights around hot electric sources such as televisions or home theater/audio components. It’s also wise to keep lights away from electric heaters, heat vents and anything that could damage the cords.
6. Watch Your Cords – Take care when running cords outside. All cords and extension cables should be neatly tucked away and not a danger to someone tripping or pulling them by accident. If a cord doesn’t reach don’t use a shortcut, instead just buy another cord.
7. Ladder Safety – Don’t forget these safety tips when using your step or extension ladder. Consider a hook helper for hard to reach spots.
8. Set the Timer – Use a timer to save energy and the most optimal setting right now is from dusk to 11pm. For outdoor lights make sure your timer is weatherproof.