Christmas Light Fires | Here’s How to Avoid Them

Now that November is wrapped up, many people have begun (even as early as before the Thanksgiving weekend) to prepare their homes for December’s biggest day: Christmas. This includes storing away fall decorations and putting in their place wreaths, nativity scenes, and perhaps one of the clearest staples of the upcoming season, Christmas lights.

Whether you see them outside, on the edge of a roof, or inside a house, Christmas lights are sure to bring back joyful memories. However, it is important to safely install Christmas lights in order to avoid hazards such as electrocutions and fires from occurring. Here we discuss three tips that can help keep your home safe.

Avoid Contact with Water

Christmas lights can provide an incredible scenery when placed in the front yard, porch, or any outdoor location. Due to the fact that water can come into contact to the plugs whenever it rains or snows, it is important to place the plugs and connections above places where water can otherwise complete cover it. If water comes into contact with the electrical components of a Christmas light socket, the lights could short-circuit, which could cause sparks if the contact was too great.

Seal Off Plugs

Similar to coming into contact with water, it is important for Christmas light plugs to stay clear of dirt, debris, or anything that can erode or negatively affect the Christmas light’s circuitry. This can be accomplished by simply taking electrical tape and wrapping it around exposed (and even unexposed) Christmas light plugs, as well as in places where extension cords are located.

Contact with water can also be reduced by placing electrical tape on sockets and connections in order to block out any water or humidity that could otherwise damage the Christmas lights.

Use a Timer

A simple yet effective tool that can be used is an electric timer. This timers are used to turn on (and off) an electric device at any set time. In the case of Christmas lights, this can be used to set automatically turn on the lights in the evening, and turn them off in the morning. This accomplishes two things. First, this saves energy consumption. It is important not to overcharge a breaker box with a lot of electricity in order to avoid sparks, fires, and other hazards from occurring. Secondly, this avoids the danger of the Christmas lights from overheating and causing contact between wires and flammable objects, such as grass and wood.

How Can I Continue to Keep Christmas Lights Out of Harm's Way?

Christmas is one of the most important holidays of the year for many people across the globe. Similar to Thanksgiving, it is important to practice safety measures to avoid having an injury. If you are at your home and see a Christmas light and notice it can be a potential hazard, it is your responsibility to place it out of harm’s way. Similarly, if you see a Christmas light in an unsafe location or without proper water protection at a family or friend’s home, it would be a good idea to inform them of it; is better to avoid an undesirable and painful event while the opportunity still exists.

Mark A. Anderson
Board Certified Personal Injury Lawyer in Fort Worth, Texas
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