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Holiday Tree, Lights and Decoration Safety Tips

The holidays can bring dangers associated with improper use of decorative lighting, dried out  Christmas trees, unsafe lights and unattended burning candles. Here are some tips for a decorating your home in a safe way.

Tree: Be sure to buy a fresh tree. Look for deep green trees whose needles are hard to pull off from the branch. The trunk should be sticky with resin. If you are buying an artificial tree, look for “Fire Resistant” before purchasing. All trees should be placed away from fireplaces and out of the way of traffic. Make sure tree stands are full of water at all times.

Lights: Use only lights that have been tested by Underwriters Laboratories or another
recognized testing laboratory. You will see a UL on the label to show they were tested by Underwriters Laboratories. Use only lights that have fused plugs and check all lights for any problems with loose connections or fraying.  Replace all burned out bulbs with bulbs of the same type. Using different wattage bulbs can cause overheating. Never connect more than 3 strands of lights together or use electric lights on a metallic tree. Before using any outdoor lights be sure they have been certified for outdoor use. Since damage or a short circuit could quickly start a fire, turn off all holiday lights when you go to bed or leave the house.  All outdoor electric lights and decorations should be plugged into circuits protected by ground-fault circuit-interrupters (GFCIs). GFCIs have been installed on exterior circuits in new homes since the 1970s and can be added in older homes. Fasten all outdoor lights securely from wind using insulated staples to hold strings in place, not nails, tacks or plastic hooks.

Decorations:  Use only non-combustible or flame resistant materials. Do not use any leaded materials as they are hazardous if ingested by children.  Avoid sharp or breakable ornaments in and ornaments with small pieces in homes with small children. Also avoid ornaments that look like candy or food that might tempt a child to eat them. Follow directions on artificial sprays to avoid eye irritation. Finally do not bun wrapping papers in the fireplace. A flash fire may result as wrapping paper ignites suddenly and burns intensely.

Darlene's Housing Tips Articles:

What is Section 8 Housing?
What Does It Mean To Have A Green Home
Smoke Alarms: They Save Lives
Light Bulbs: What's the Scoop?
Everything about Home Inspections
How to Make Money With Rentals

Title Insurance Do I Really Need It?

What Are "Comps" And How Are They Used To Determine Value?

Common Selling Mistakes

3 Key Negotiation Strategies for Maximizing your Buying Power

Tips to Home Staging
Reverse Mortgage Is it Right For You

Landscaping a Way Towards Great Curb Appeal
How to Save on Your Heating Bill
Home Staging Keys to Profit

Holiday Tree, Lights, Decoration Safety

Opportunities vs Obstacles in the Housing Market

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