Before you channel your inner Clark Griswold this holiday decorating season, here’s a number Dixie Electric, Plumbing & Air wants you to ponder for a few minutes, 12,500. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) says that’s about how many people go to the emergency room each year for falls, cuts, shocks, and burns related to holiday decorating.
The CPSC has put together a common sense checklist to ensure indoor and outdoor holiday light safety:
- Before stringing any lights, inspect each string carefully. Look for cracked sockets, broken bulbs, frayed or bare wires, and loose connections. Be sure to unplug the lights before attempting any repairs.
- If you do repairs, make sure to use items specified by the manufacturer. Bulbs with an incorrect wattage rating are a fire hazard.
- Don’t plug in too many strings of lights end-to-end. The general rule of thumb is no more than three strings of mini lights and for the larger C-7 or C-9 bulbs, a maximum of 50 lights.
- If possible, retire your old incandescent lights and replace them with LED lights to increase Christmas light safety. They don’t get hot like the old-style bulbs, and they use much less electricity.
- Never run extension cords, even those labeled for outdoor use, through water.
- Keep your natural Christmas tree watered, and make sure any artificial trees are flame retardant.
Another important factor in holiday decorating safety is making sure your home’s electrical system is up to the challenge. An overloaded circuit is a dangerous circuit. When you call Dixie, our licensed electricians have the knowledge to assure your decorations don’t pose a hazard. If necessary, and if your electrical panel has the capacity, we can add an extra circuit to handle the extra load for your Christmas lights.
Now is also a great time to schedule a Safe and Sound electrical inspection. We use high-tech tools like infrared thermal imaging to identify hidden dangers. We can locate warm or hot spots lurking behind walls or above ceilings before they cause a fire. It’s just one of many tests we do to assure electrical fire safety in your home.
If you are the Clark Griswold type, then go for it. Just make sure you do it safely and call in the expert electricians from Dixie Electric, Plumbing & Air in Montgomery and Auburn, AL to help. Make sure to like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter to get more important information like this.