Home and Garden

How to safely hang outdoor Christmas lights

Right from shopping gifts to dinner with family and friends, everything has a special meaning during Christmas. One of the most exciting parts of this season is making your house come alive with lights. However, while you are planning to dazzle your neighborhood with Christmas lights, it is critical to adopt some safety precautions, especially, if you have small children and pets. This might be alarming, but there is no need to get too worried as these safety concerns can be easily resolved with some simple solutions.

We have listed down some useful lighting tips that can help ensure a happy as well as a safe Christmas celebration.

Exercise caution while hanging exterior lights
While hanging lights around the house, secure them with insulated holders instead of something flimsy and sharp such as nails or tacks. Also, refrain from fastening the lights on trees that are in close proximity to the power lines. Likewise, you should have a proper power outlet, preferably a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI). This type of outlet immediately shuts down in case there is an overcurrent. You can either get an electrician to permanently install a GFCI outlet or purchase a portable outdoor unit that costs approximately $20.

Buy extension cords specially manufactured for outdoor use
While shopping for extension cords, ensure that they are designed for outdoor use. They should be waterproof as well as resistant to extremely low temperatures. Avoid putting them near to the driveway or sidewalk. Moreover, it is essential to pick extension cords of the right length as you don’t want them to bunch into an unflattering clump that affects the appeal of your Christmas lights and causes a hazard for pedestrians.

Always purchase waterproof Christmas lights
Whether you live in a snow-prone area or not, it always makes sense to buy waterproof Christmas lights. Don’t use indoor Christmas lights outside the house as they aren’t appropriately insulated like the outdoor ones. While shopping for outdoor Christmas lights ensure that it is endorsed by the Underwriters Lab (UL). This certification indicates that the product meets the national industry standards prescribed by the American National Standards Institute.

Switch to LED lights
If you are concerned about overheated Christmas lights starting a fire in the outdoors, then switch to LED lights with epoxy lenses. As compared to the traditional varieties, these are cooler to touch and consume less electricity. In a nutshell, they are safe as well as economical in the long run.

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