The holidays are a time for joy and festivities with family and friends. While decking the halls, keep safety in mind to ensure happy, safe, and healthy celebrations. Here are a few helpful safety tips for holiday decorating so you can enjoy the season accident-free.
Safety Tips for Holiday Decorating
1. Inspect the Decorations
Before hanging lights and displaying ornaments, carefully inspect your holiday decorations. Check for damaged or frayed wires, broken bulbs, and other defects that pose a safety hazard. Replace or repair damaged items before using them, and verify all electrical components are in good condition.
2. Choose Fire-Resistant Decorations
Opt for fire-resistant or flame-retardant decorations, particularly artificial trees, garlands, and wreaths. With fire-resistant holiday decor, you reduce the risk of a house fire during the season.
3. Use the Right Lights
When it comes to holiday lighting, use lights specifically designed for indoor or outdoor use. Indoor lights do not have adequate protection from snow and rain, and outdoor lights may be too hot for indoor use. LED lights are a safer choice because they emit less heat and are more energy-efficient than traditional incandescent bulbs.
4. Safety Tips for Holiday Decorating: Don’t Overload Electrical Outlets
An overlooked electrical outlet can lead to a house fire. Don’t use extension cords and power strips, and follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for maximum load capacity. Never daisy-chain power strips and unplug decorations when you leave the home or go to bed.
5. Keep Flammable Materials Away From Open Flame
Keep lights and candles away from flammable materials like curtains, paper, and furniture. Don’t decorate the hearth if you plan to enjoy a fire in the fireplace. Always unplug holiday lights and extinguish candles before leaving or going to bed.
6. Secure Outdoor Decorations
Securely anchor your outdoor holiday decorations to prevent them from blowing away in windy weather. Use appropriate clips, stakes, or hangers to secure lights and decorations, and be mindful of the placement to avoid damage to your roof, gutters, or siding.
7. Keep an Eye on Candles
Candles are a popular aspect of seasonal decor, but they can be a fire hazard. Always place candles on stable, non-flammable surfaces, and keep them out of the reach of children and pets. Consider using battery-operated candles as a safer alternative.
8. Safety Tips for Holiday Decorating: Using Ladders
When decorating hard-to-reach areas, use a sturdy, properly positioned ladder. Don’t overreach or stand on the top rungs, and have someone stabilize the ladder while you work. Follow ladder safety guidelines to avoid accidents and falls.
9. Childproof Decorations
If you have children or pets, take precautions to childproof your decorations. Keep small ornaments and decorations out of their reach, secure cords to prevent tripping hazards, and avoid decorations that look like candy or toys to prevent choking.
10. Stay Informed
Learn about recalls and safety guidelines related to holiday decorations. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) regularly issues recalls and safety alerts so you are informed. Follow recommendations to keep your holiday decorating safe.
With these safety tips, you ensure your festive decorations spread holiday cheer while keeping your home and loved ones safe. A safe and beautiful holiday season is a gift to enjoy with friends, family, and neighbors.