Boulder City Magazine® November 2009 Issue
by Scott Sauer
Advanced Structural Inspections
Holiday Light Safety
It’s time to start thinking about your holiday light decorations. The installation of these decorations can be both exciting and stressful, which can make you less aware of the dangers involved. It’s important for you to understand and guard against these dangers to ensure the safety of your family and home. A little preparation before you start the installation may help prevent a holiday disaster.
Boulder City Magazine®
- All outdoor Christmas lights should be connected to ground-fault circuits.
- Check all light strands for fraying cords, loose bulbs, broken or cracked sockets, and serviceable plugs.
- Turn off the Christmas lights when you sleep, or if you leave your home.
- Use only outdoor lights outside your home.
- Fasten the bulbs securely and point the sockets down to avoid moisture build-up.
- Do not exceed the manufacturer’s recommendations for the number of strands of lights to be connected together.
- Only use Christmas lights that have fuses in the plugs.
- Ensure that you are using the correct sized circuit breaker or fuses for the circuit that will support your Christmas lights.
- Never use indoor extension cords outside.
- Keep extension cord use to a minimum to avoid overloading wall outlets.
- Do not use small diameter “light utility” extension cords for multiple light strands.
- Do not disable or bypass grounded circuits (three prong outlets and plugs).
- Do not pinch or crimp power cords when laying and hanging lights and displays.
- Keep outdoor electrical connectors above ground.
- Replace any burnt-out light bulbs promptly.
- Do not place Christmas lights near gas or electric heaters, fireplaces, candles or other similar sources of heat.
- Do not puncture the insulation of the holiday light sets with staples or nails.
- When hanging holiday lights, do not place insulated wires on sharp hooks or objects.
- Do not let the Christmas holiday light bulbs rest on the light string supply cord or other electrical wires.
For more on this or other home care subjects, contact Scott at www.scottsauer.com.
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