Decorating outdoors for the holidays can be quite a challenge. It not only challenges your creative skills, but it also challenges your physical skills and poses a risk of injury if you fall off a ladder. When hanging lights and decorations outdoors, it’s important to keep yourself and your home safe.
No matter what part of the country you live in, everyone looks forward to the spirit of the holidays. Decorating the house with twinkling holiday lights and beautiful wreaths offers guests an inviting entrance to your home. Lining your roof with holiday lights jump starts the festive spirit, but it also creates the potential for personal injury and roof damage. Take a look at some helpful tips that will ensure a safe, holiday season for your family.
Power – Use a grounded, covered GFCI outdoor outlet that will shut down the circuit with an overload. Do not plug your lights into cords running under doors or out of windows, a definite fire hazard. If you don’t have an outdoor outlet, a professional electrician can install one to ensure your family’s safety and provide an outdoor outlet for future holidays.
Cords – If using extension cords, make sure they’re rated for outdoor use, and keep connections above ground, snow and water. To prevent tripping hazards, avoid running cords through high-traffic areas like walkways and driveways. If you have no choice, secure cords to the ground and keep excess cord length out of the way.
Ladders – When hanging lights around your roof, make sure your ladder is stable and tall enough to reach the area. Install lights with clips that attach to your gutters, siding and windows. Do not use nails, screws or staples to attach your lights. They can cause damage to siding, gutters and roof.
Lights – Outdoor lights should always be waterproof to prevent fire. Look for light strings with UL approval that meets industry standards for safety. Never use indoor holiday lights outdoors. If you want to light trees and shrubs, use mesh net lighting that drapes over branches like a blanket, so you don’t have to string the lights through limbs.
When decorating outdoors for the holidays, use caution and proper equipment to prevent injuries, damage to your house, and the risk of fires. If you need help with holiday lights or other things around the house, click here to find local resources in your area.