During every holiday season, it’s important to remain safe by doing a holiday electrical safety inspection of your decorations. The security of your family, home, and belongings may depend upon it.
Our Abbotsford electricians have compiled a list of suggestions below; a holiday electrical safety inspection checklist. This will help you determine what to look for, what to do if you find an electrical issue. It will also show how you can save money while securely providing enjoyable festive lighting for your family and visitors. Have a safe holiday!
Holiday Electrical Safety for Indoor Lighting
- Only use indoor lights accredited by a certification agency, indicated on the packaging.
- Replace tree lighting that has any cuts, frayed ends, or dry and cracked cords.
- Never connect more than 3 lighting strings together to prevent overheating and potential fire damage.
- Don’t overload circuits with multiple extension cords, which can cause overheating and a possible fire risk.
- Keep bulbs away from paper, cloth, wires, and electrical supply cords.
- Live trees can become a fire hazard if they dry out. Keep the tree well-watered throughout the holiday.
- Replace burnt-out bulbs with ones properly rated for the string.
- Consider replacing older, larger bulbs with smaller, energy-efficient LED lights.
- Be mindful of young children and pets that may chew on exposed cords or lights. See our post on Protecting Your Kids.
- Turn off tree lights if you leave the house and when going to bed.
Holiday Electrical Safety for Outdoor Lighting
- Examine outdoor lighting strings and electrical cords for damage and replace them if necessary.
- Exterior applications require lighting and cords rated for outdoor use.
- Electrical decoration lights for outdoors must be powered by a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) outlet.
- Never attach electrical cords to your home using staples, tacks, or nails.
- Use LED lights outdoors since they produce less heat, use up to 90% less energy, and present less of a fire risk.
- When hanging lights, keep at least 3 metres (10 feet) away from power lines.
- ︎Metal ladders conduct electricity. Use only wooden or fibreglass ladders if possible.
- Electrical cords should not cross sidewalks, stairs, puddles, or high-traffic areas. Walking on cords can cause damage that may lead to overheating and a possible electrical fire.
- Use electrical cords correctly rated for the load. Overloading a cord may cause overheating and subsequent fire.
- Outdoor holiday lighting is designed for seasonal use. Remove after the holiday season ends.
Other Holiday Electrical Inspection Tips
- Lighting cords should not be strung across doorways, under carpets, or open areas of the floor. Foot traffic could damage the cords or cause a tripping hazard for family or guests.
- Avoid indoor or outdoor lighting against windows. Precipitation could travel down the cord and into a socket or receptacle causing a fire.
- If a breaker associated with your holiday lighting trips, do not ignore it. Readjust the load on the breaker or call an electrician for a safer solution.
Happy Holidays from Premium Electric
Premium Electric services the Fraser Valley with quality electrical installations, and repairs. We are available for 24-hour emergency electrical service over the holidays and service customers throughout Abbotsford, Mission, Chilliwack, Aldergrove, and Maple Ridge. We also do electrical safety inspections.
On behalf of our Abbotsford electricians, we wish you all a safe and joyous holiday season!
The Government of Canada also offers some additional Tips for Holiday Safety. You may also like these other articles by Premium Electric