5 Tips to Keep Your Holiday Lights Bright

The holiday season is here once more. You will probably be spending time making your place festive for the occasion. Nothing quite says the holidays have arrived like lights strung across your landscape. With all the celebration, it is easy to forget that you are essentially wrapping cheap electrical wiring around your most expensive asset: your house. Here are 5 tips on staying safe with holiday lighting.

1. Upgrade Your Old Incandescent Lights to LED

Don’t get left in the past. New LEDs are brighter, use less electricity, and last longer than those old condescends from your grandma’s time. LED technology creates almost no heat and is much more efficient at converting electricity to holiday cheer (colored light). Sure, the upfront cost is a little higher, but the many benefits are too good to ignore.

2. Read the Labels on Your Lights

Seriously. Indoor lights and outdoor lights are not interchangeable. The same goes for extension cords. Outdoor electrical equipment is more resistance to moisture and generally more rugged to protect against the elements. Be mindful of where they will lay on the ground as water puddles may form and short the connection. Additionally, you need to check how many strings can safely share a single outlet. Aside from knocking out your circuit breaker, an overloaded outlet can create heat behind your wall.

3. Toss Damaged Equipment

It can be tough throwing away old or damaged equipment, especially when you have made memories. But these things were never designed to last forever. If you spot any expose wiring or cracks in the insulation, it is time to upgrade. Don’t let yourself get shocked by how deteriorated your lighting has gotten.

4. Keep Things Tight

Fasten all outdoor lighting to prevent bulbs from falling or being blown down. You also don’t want kids or animals coming around and pulling off your hard work. It is very easy to damage these thin cords if they are being pulled in different directions. Zip ties work great for holding down the fort and can be easily snipped off after the celebrations.

5. Don’t Leave Your Lights Unattended

This doesn’t mean you have to stand on your front yard with a fire extinguisher. It means don’t leave all your lights on when no one is there to call the fire department. If you are stepping out to get some last minute gifts, be smart and turn off your lighting. Utilizing power strips can help turn off/on several sections and save a little time. You don’t want to come home to a smoldering wreckage.

Protecting those around you and your valuable home should be your number one goal. That and maybe having a few more lights than the neighbors. Following these steps with a little common sense will go a long way to keeping your holiday bright.

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