It’s the most wonderful time of the year and if you are like me you spent a good part of your week throwing up Christmas decorations. I love my home decorated for Christmas and I love driving through the different neighborhoods and looking at all the pretty lights strung across various houses. While I thoroughly enjoy each and every light I see, it is important to remember some pretty simple safety rules when decorating. No one wants their tree to catch on fire or an electrical fire to break out because of faulty lighting.
One of the biggest things to remember if you have a real tree is to water it. Yep, water it. If you are a serial plant killer because you never remember to water them – please, by all means, go the artificial route and save yourself the fire hazard. There are roughly 250 fires started each year by dry trees. Don’t let yours be one of them.
Before you start stringing lights around your tree (and home) check each and every strand for cracked cords, frayed ends and loose connections. I personally don’t have much luck with lights working year after year but perhaps you do. If so, get rid of old strands that do not have fuses. Modern strands have fused plugs which prevent sparks from shooting out if they ever short circuit.
I also rarely have luck with replacing burned out bulbs and having the strand of lights continue to work, but you should always repair the bulb that is not working with the same wattage as the strand.
A whole slew of trouble can pop up when decorating the outside of your home and I don’t just mean the difference between your personal preference of lights and your neighbors (or your spouses’). Although, I will say my house has two different personalities this year. One of us prefers colored light wrapped straight up trees (T-A-C-K-Y) and the other one of us prefers plain old white lights and garland around the front door (C-L-A-S-S-Y). Needless to say, we are well-lit in the front yard this year.
Check your extension cords from time to time to see if they are hot. If they are, remove them. It is not very common, but they can occasionally overheat.
Be sure the lights you put up outside are for outdoor use and use outdoor extension cords as well. Indoor cords and lights have much less insulation and will become cracked and damaged when exposed to outdoor elements which is another hazard.
Have fun decorating this year. Everyone loves to look at a Griswold house so light it up everybody!! At Carmine’s, we do not decorate, but we do fix plumbing problems and repair your furnace and air conditioner so give us a call today at 203-791-8089 if you need our services.