It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, especially since people have started taking out their holiday decorations. While the whole holiday vibe is warming our hearts, firefighters are advising caution as during the holiday season the number of electrical fires, or holiday fires, goes through the roof.
There are a few easy tricks that will help you keep you and your family safe during this holiday season. A simple feat as knowing the difference between indoor and outdoor lights can protect you from a possible fiery disaster.
Firefighters say that the most frequent fires start because people use indoor lights to decorate the outside of the house. Manufacturers usually mention on the box if the lights can be used outdoors as well as indoors. However, if the information is not on the packed, just check the UL code. If the code is red, then the lights can be safely used outside if it is green, the lights are meant for indoor use only.
Another frequent Christmas fault is overloading outlets. Firefighters recommend the use of lower wattage lights. Moreover, it’s important not to cover the cords with any inflammable materials such as rugs.
Here are additional ten safety tips for preventing holiday fires.
– Purchase only UL-listed extinction cords and electric decorations as they are the safest on the market.
– No matter is the lights are brand new or have been sitting in the attic since last year; it’s important to check all lights, extension cords, and all other electric decorations before plugging them in. Be sure to check for damaged wire insulation.
– Remember to unplug every electrical decoration before replacing fuses or changing bulbs.
– Double-check the wattage of a new Christmas bulb as a bulb with a higher wattage than the ones already on the string can cause an overheat, the largest source of holiday fires.
– Choose a wooden latter when hanging Christmas lights on the house’s exterior as wood does not conduct electricity.
– Read the manufacturers’ instructions carefully and follow them to the letter. They are there for your own safety.
– Usually, it’s best to connect as many as three strands of light from end to end. Anything more can cause an overheat.
– Check the wattage rating of your extension cords and respect their maximum load.
– Check the Christmas light wires from time to time and make sure they’re not warm.
– Remember to always turn off all electric decorations and light before leaving the house or going to bed.
If you follow all the bits of advice given by the firefighters, you have good chances of staying away from holiday fires. Just remember that safety always comes first, no matter how cute the indoor lights would look on the patio.
Image source: Wikipedia