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The Do’s and Don’ts of Holiday Lighting

During the holidays, taking extra precaution to protect your home’s electrical wiring, holiday lighting, and devices. In the event of an Electrical Emergency call JP Electrical right away to help you remedy the problem.

DON’T:

Overload circuits or extension cords

This is a very common problem and the major cause of fires. Overloading extension cords by plugging too many lights into the same receptacle can cause lights to burn out and circuits to fail, increasing the risk of fires. Avoid plugging too many lights into a single extension cord plugged into a single outlet. Plug lights into multiple outlets to reduce the load on the circuit.

DO:

Use surge protectors

To more effectively protect your outlets from electrical overloads, use a surge protector on your lighting display. This will protect the lights from voltage spikes that can cause circuit overloads. Surge protectors are a good idea under any circumstances, but particularly when placing a heavier burden on your home electrical system, such as installing and running a large quantity of holiday lights.

DO:

Take care of your cords

Be careful where you place and run extension cords. Rugs and other obstructions running over or placed nearby cords and outlets are a fire hazard. Anything that could catch fire should be removed away from any cords, outlets, and wires. Putting up decor during the holiday season typically requires using an often chaotic arrangement of extension cords, outlets, and power strips to power all of the lights and accessories. Because of this, you should be vigilant about where cords and other electrical accessories are located and take precautions to relocate certain hazardous items.

DO:

Connect cords with the proper number of lights

Be sure to only connect light sets with the same number of lights. For example, never connect a 50 light set to a 100 light set. This will cause the 50 light set to prematurely burn out. Purchase light sets of the same number to avoid this problem.

DO:

Select the right voltage and type of bulbs

If you have to replace bulbs, remember that not all bulbs are the same. Bulb types and voltages vary and it is important to get the right type to preserve your light system. Make sure to select the proper voltage of bulb for the particular light set. A 50 light set, for example, uses a 2.5 volt bulb and will not be compatible with a 35 light set.

DO:

Distinguish between indoor and outdoor lights

There is a difference between indoor and outdoor lights. Using lights that are not approved for outdoor use can cause premature burnout, electrical shorts, and fires. Make sure to check the label on the light set for ‘Indoor/Outdoor’ or ‘Indoor Use Only’ before stringing the lights.

DO:

Consider LED bulbs

Lighting your home consumes a lot of power, but the light show doesn’t have to be environmentally irresponsible. Instead of using incandescent bulbs on your lighting set, consider LED replacements. These bulbs can help reduce your energy consumption by some 20%. These lights will also last longer and emit better light.

During the holidays, taking extra precaution to protect your home’s electrical wiring, lighting, and devices. In the event of an Electrical Emergency call JP Electrical right away to help you remedy the problem.