This time of year, many people decorate their homes or Christmas trees with holiday lights. As a result, it is important to make sure you lights are in good shape to prevent electrocutions or fires. Consumer reports recommends that you replace holiday lights every three years. This is to avoid frayed or cracked wires. Some other suggestions are:
- Check all lights carefully for damaged wires, loose connections, or broken sockets;
- Replace all broken or missing bulbs;
- Never string for than 3 strands together to avoid overloading your electrical outlets;
- When unplugging lights use the gripping area on the plug, not the cord;
- Keep small bulbs and fuses away from children who may choke on them;
- When buying new lights check for the holographic Underwriters Laboratory (UL) label. The tag should be affixed to the cord, not just on the package.
- Don’t hang lights with staples or nails because they can damage the wires;
- Turn off lights and other holiday displays before going out or to bed; and
- Store lights in a dry place so they won’t get damp or waterlogged.
By following these few simple tips, you can reduce the risk of electrocution or fire and have a wonderful and bright holiday season