We know you can’t wait to bust out the decorations and get your house looking as festive as the Griswold’s, but before you plug in one more string of lights, here are a few safety tips to keep you and your family from the same fate as Grandma’s cat on National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation:
- Inspection Time.
Inspect each of the cords on your decorations before setting them up and plugging them in. Do not use any that have frayed, loose or exposed wires.
- Follow the RULE OF 3.
Do not plug in more than 3 strands of lights to each outlet. More than three can not only blow a fuse but they can start a fire!
- Don’t Be a Cheapskate.
If you buy decorations at a closeout or dollar store, they may not be certified or tested for safety. Decorations not bearing a label from an Independent testing laboratory such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL), Canadian Standards Association (CSA) or Intertek (ETL) have not been tested for safety and could be hazardous.
- Make Santa Walk A Bit.
Santa may want the stockings hung by the chimney but if you have yours with a fire going (real or not) the heat can scorch and ignite many decorations hanging nearby. Try tying stockings to the backs of kitchen chairs or on the stairs and tell the kids Santa’s trying to get more exercise!
- Spread the love.
Don’t try to plug everything into one extension cord or outlet. High-wattage appliances may need the entire load, so don’t try and share that outlet with a lot of blingy decorations. Avoid overloading those outlets to avoid blowing a fuse or starting a fire.
- Stand By Me.
Candles and anything cooking should never be left unattended. We all know this, and we hear this over and over again, but during the holidays we may be more prone to breaking this rule and that is why we have more house fires during the holidays. Enough said.
- Let’s Be Fake.
Real trees take a LOT of water…. every single day! In order to keep them fresh and resistant to fire, they must chug water daily. Artificial trees are safer…and a whole lot less messy. Candles are another thing we can move away from REAL during the holidays. Battery operated candles are more real looking than ever. Forget about those movies we see with real candles in the Christmas trees and all around the houses. Remember how short their lifespan was?
If you need someone to come out and inspect anything suspicious (well, we don’t mean your Cousin Eddy!), give us a call. We are happy to come out to inspect old electric panels before you decide to purchase that new swimming pool or hot tub with your BIG FAT CHRISTMAS BONUS!
From our families to yours, we wish you a SAFE and wonderful Christmas Holiday!