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Picture of a home decorated for the holidays

Your Safety Guide To Holiday Lighting

In Texas, we either go big or go home. And, this ideology applies to holiday lighting as well. When the holiday’s hit, we here at Electrical Doctor love the shift from spooky Halloween decor to whimsical winter holiday lighting. It’s like every house is dressed in their Sunday bests, ready to impress!

So, we are here to make sure you are all dressing your homes up responsibly. That’s why today, we want to focus on holiday lighting safety. Here is your home holiday guide to safe lighting!

Make A Plan

Before you start tacking up string lights, there a few things you need to do. First, you should formulate some sort of lighting design plan. This way, you’ll know what you’re trying to achieve, and can check to ensure you have everything you need to successfully carry out your plan.

Second, check to make sure all of your outdoor electrical outlets are working! Third, clean your home’s gutters. Any leaves and debris left behind can become a fire hazard. If your lights produce too much heat, the debris in your gutters can catch fire.

Lastly, gather and organize all of the tools you will be using to install your decor. A smooth installation process is a safe one!

Make Sure You Are Using Outdoor Materials

There are specific outdoor lights that you need to use. Not all string lights are made to tolerate shifts in humidity and temperature. Placing indoor lights outside will result in a malfunctioning display, as they will be unable to combat moisture and will stop working.

Test Your Lights Before Installation

You don’t want to finish securing your lights to then find out that they don’t even work. That would be a ton of wasted time and effort. How do you avoid this? Plug-in any electrically powered decor before installing them to ensure they operate properly.

Use GFCI Outlets

Water and electricity do not mix. GFCI outlets, or Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter outlets, protect you from hazards that result when electrical devices get wet. GFCI outlets guard you and your family against electrocution by monitoring the amount of power that flows through your lights. If the GFCI outlet detects a surge in power, it will automatically turn off your circuit so electrocution does not occur.

Don’t have GFCI outlets already? No problem! For GFCI outlet installation, just contact Electrical Doctor!

Don’t Overload Your Extension Cords

Under no circumstances should you plug in more than three lines of string lights into one extension cord. This can cause the extension cord to overheat, potentially causing a home fire.

Also, make sure your extension cord is labeled for outdoor use specifically. Indoor extension cords will fail in outdoor conditions.

Precautions should additionally be taken regarding the placement of your extension cords. Leaving cords across walkways or unsecured may pose tripping hazards. Always fasten your cords along the perimeter of your home to prevent injury.

Set A Timer For Your Lights

Not only will your electrical costs drop, but you will also prevent electrical emergencies from occurring while you and your family are asleep, by installing a timer on your holiday lights. Unexpected surges happen. Protect your home—turn your lights off at night and when you are away.

For GFCI outlet installation or outlet repair, contact Electrical Doctor at (713) 999-6079. We are available throughout the holidays, 24/7!