On the first day of Christmas, CPS Energy gave to me…12 tips on holiday decorating safety! We know you’re busy this holiday season, so to avoid going through 12 verses of song, let’s just take it from the top. Here we go!
12 Outlet Safety Caps
Don’t leave those holiday lights uncovered! Whether they’re indoors or out, make sure to cover the ends of each string of lights with a safety cap to prevent any little elves from sticking their fingers inside. This will also seal lights off from any water damage.
11 Battery-Operated Candles
Everyone loves to see those lights flickering in the windows, but candles start nearly half of home decoration fires, according to the National Fire Protection Association. Keep it merry and bright (and safe) with some battery-operated candles.
10 Feet of Space
If you’re decorating near power lines or other electrical equipment, you should give yourself at least 10 feet of space for safety.
9 Strings of LED lights
LED lights are a much safer option for indoor and outdoor lighting than incandescent lights. They produce very little heat and are ideal for holiday décor. LED lights also last up to 25 times longer and use 75 percent less electricity.
8 Hours of Darkness
Santa can’t come until you go to sleep, and you can’t go to sleep until you turn off all indoor and outdoor electrical decorations. Never leave lights on unattended.
7 Days a Week of Watering
Dry Christmas trees are a serious fire hazard. If you choose a real tree, make sure to keep it fresh by watering it every day. Once the season is over, remove it from your home immediately.
6 Properly Marked Extension Cords
Did you know that extension cords are specifically marked for indoor or outdoor use? They are not interchangeable. Make sure you’ve got the right cords for the right location.
5 Smoke Alarms
Before you whip up that Rare Who Roast Beast, make sure your smoke alarms are in working order. Batteries should be replaced at least once a year and alarms should be tested once a month. You can also take this time to check your carbon monoxide alarms.
4 Point Light Inspection
If you’re looking to have the best lights on the block, make sure and inspect all strands, decorations and extension cords for damage before using. Throw away old lights.
3 Strands Per Outlet
You don’t want to overload any electrical outlets, so never plug in more than three strands of lights to one. You could also use a power strip with a built-in circuit breaker for additional protection.
2 Types of Ladders
Be sure to use wooden or fiberglass ladders when decorating outdoors. Metal ladders conduct electricity and could be hazardous.
1 Serious Commitment to Safety
The holidays are a fun time of year with lots of activities, parties and relatives around. Enjoy yourself, but always remember your safety and that of your family members should always be top of mind, no matter where or how you’re celebrating.