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The ultimate holiday lights safety checklist

Holiday lights safety checklist

It’s the time of year where you feel the need to channel your inner Clark Griswold. We understand your grand ambitions, and we want you to succeed with a light show that (figuratively) blows the neighbors away.

Whether you’re planning an inside job or the greatest exterior light show your neighborhood has ever seen, here are the top safety tips you should keep in mind as light your home for the holidays.

✓ If you’re purchasing a tree, consider getting a fresh one — they are less likely to catch fire than artificial trees.

✓ Before you set up any interior lighting or flammable decorations, check your smoke alarms to make sure they are in working order.

✓ Check last year’s light strings to make sure they aren’t frayed. If you replace any of the bulbs, check to make sure the wattage and voltage matches the original strand.

✓ Some lights are only certified for interior use, so be sure to check your exterior lights before hanging them.

✓ If you’re using a ladder to put up your lights, make sure someone is standing at the base to secure it. Abide by the guidelines on the ladder that say “Do not go past this point” on either the second or third to top rung.

✓ When mounting lights to a tree or home exterior, be sure you do so using hooks or heavy-duty tape. Don’t use nails or tacks to secure your holiday lighting. Also, be sure to keep any electrical connectors off the ground and away from metal gutters.

✓ Don’t connect multiple extension cords together. Buy a longer cord, or find a way to light the house using a few smaller cords that won’t overload your outlets.

✓ Avoid a fire hazard by turning your exterior holiday lights off at night or when you leave the house. The best option is to buy an automatic timer that turns them off even if you forget.

✓ If you have young kids or pets in the house, consider blocking off your tree area when the room isn’t in use.

Feeling like it’s a good year to be a spectator?

You don’t have to spend hours on holiday lights to enjoy them! Consider going on a holiday lights tour instead. You can plan your own or book one in advance.

This 2.5 hour motor coach tour is both affordable and award-winning. If you’re hoping for a more exclusive experience, Renee’s Royal Valet Limousines was voted the top holiday lights tour for small groups — and they offer a few different options, including a trip to the Woodland Hills Winery in Delano, Minnesota.

All in all, the holidays are a wonderful time to spend with family and friends. By taking a few precautions, you can make sure they’re also safe for everyone to enjoy!

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