The CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission) reports that injuries related to holiday decorating sent about 18,100 people to the emergency room in 2017. Before you scratch that holiday-decorating itch, make sure you know the safety precautions you should take. The short checklist below will help you choose the right holiday decorations and install them safely.
- Pick the right type. If your family prefers live Christmas trees to fake ones, choose a freshly cut tree. If you decide to go artificial, make sure the tree is labeled or certified as fire-resistant.
- Hydrate properly. Dried-out live trees catch fire more quickly than those that are sufficiently hydrated. Water your real tree regularly and check the level of water in the stand every day.
- Keep away from heat. Place your tree away from your heating equipment, fireplace, or other heat sources to minimize fire risks.
- UL Listed. Make sure you buy lights that are UL (Underwriters Laboratories) listed. Additionally, ensure the extension cords and lights you plan to use outside are rated for outdoor use.
- Double-check for safety. Check the lights you already own and replace any that have frayed or damaged wires. Not only are faulty strands a fire hazard, they could also ruin your whole design.
- Use a stable ladder. When installing lights and other holiday decorations above your reach, use a well-built and solid ladder. An extra-large stepladder or A-frame is an excellent option. Make sure your ladder extends six inches or higher than the highest point you plan to hang your lights.
- Skip fake candy. If you have pets or young children, it's best to avoid using holiday decorations that look like food or candy.
- Hang them higher. Hang ornaments on the higher limbs of your Christmas tree if you have small kids or pets.
As you buy and hang your holiday decorations, take added precautions to keep your loved ones safe. If you need help with any home-comfort issues in Monmouth or Ocean counties, contact the heating and cooling experts at Aggressive Mechanical Contractors.