Before you turn the switch on and light up the night with your Christmas display, think safety! We at Anderson Restoration see emergency restoration situations across Jacksonville annually as a result of poor safety around Christmas lights. You always want to be safe and have a checklist in the back of your mind before you start thinking about recreating Clark Griswold’s Christmas Vacation!

Check All of the Lights

Before you even start to string up any strands of lights, check all of the bulbs! What you want to look out for is any sign of cracked cords. If you have a cord that is frayed at the end or a connection that is loose, correct the problem. The safest course of action is to just get rid of those light strands entirely.

Throw away old strands of lights as well. The new modern lights have fused plugs and a few years ago these were not in production. The fused plugs work to prevent sparks in the case of a short circuit. If you find you have old strands of lights, replace them immediately.

Watch for Bulbs

Bulbs blow out on lights all of the time. Use the proper type of bulbs when replacing them. Wattage awareness is essential. A light bulb that is too powerful could lead to a fire hazard.

Grounded Outlets

Plug all lights into a ground fault circuit interrupter outlet because there is so much water and debris outside to harm outlets. If you need to install a GFCI outlet, call an electrician to help.

Avoid Tacks and Nails

Avoid using tacks and nails to hang lights. You could pierce the strand of light and cause an electrocution. You could also end up with holes in your home that you did not intend, leading to a risk of water damage. Instead, try to use insulated hooks!

Shut the Lights Off

At the end of the night, be sure to shut the lights off. Do not leave them running when you are not home or when you go to sleep at night. In the event something does spark, you want to be there and at the ready to take care of the issue.

The Fire Risk

The reason we stress checking all light strands is due to fire risk. Electrical lights can short out quickly. Whether you are placing them in an indoor Christmas tree or an outside bush, it does not take much for a fire to start. Some of the dry periods experienced in Jacksonville during the winter increase the odds for emergency restoration needs.

Hanging Christmas lights is more dangerous than you think! Practice the safety tips we laid out above to avoid harming yourself or your home. But, if you do need our emergency restoration services, we work throughout Jacksonville. We hope you create a safe and beautiful holiday display!