The holiday season is here, and colorful Christmas lights are starting to embellish the majority of American households. While we wait for snow to complete the magical scenery, it’s important to follow a few essential rules when decorating the house.
There’s A Difference Between Indoor and Outdoor Lights
One of the most common sources of electric fires is the improper use of lights. There are two major types of lights: outdoor lights and indoor lights. The outdoor ones can be safely used in the house, but the indoor lights can only be utilized in the house, an outdoor use being strictly prohibited as the lights are not safe enough to withstand the power of the elements.
In the case in which the manufacturers didn’t mention on the package if the lights are meant for indoor or outdoor use, you can always check the UL code. If it’s red, then it’s ok to use them to decorate the house’s exterior. If it’s green, then you can only use them inside.
Speaking of the UL code, firefighters are recommending you to only buy electronics marked with the UL code as they are the safest and most reliable.
Check Your Extension Cord’s Wattage
Another common fire hazard is an overcharged extension cord. Make sure to check your cord’s wattage as well as that of the lights of electrical decorations you are planning to plug into it.
Moreover, make sure that all electrical outlets, including extension cords, are out in the open and no flammable materials, such as rugs or paper decorations, are near them.
Check All Your Lights and Electric Decorations
Before hanging this year’s decorations, make sure that there are no stray wires or broken bulbs. It doesn’t matter if the lights come from the supermarket or the box in the attic labeled Christmas Stuff. All electric decorations must first be checked.
Furthermore, make sure that you choose the right type of bulbs to replace the broken ones as a bulb with the wrong wattage can cause a system overheat.
Mind Your Guests Around the Kitchen
Cooking accidents are still the most frequent causes of household fires. Stay safe this holiday season and don’t allow your guests near electronic appliances if they are not accustomed to them. Moreover, it’s important to have somebody in the kitchen at all times when a meal is cooking.
In the hopes that you will enjoy a merry holiday season and be spared of any incidents, here’s to holiday cheer and colorful decorations!
Image source: Flickr