Holiday Lights Should Sparkle–Not Spark

House With Lights - Armstrong

So, are you in competition with the neighbors? Come on, you know what we’re talking about. Do you try to one-up your good buddies when it comes to Christmas decorations? Even if you’re not a Clark Griswold when it comes to home decorating, Armstrong Plumbing, Air & Electric wants to make sure your Christmas light display is safe. There are several common-sense steps you can take to protect your home and the people who live there:

  • Turn lights off when you leave:
    • Your decorations should never be lit when you are away from home or asleep. Timers are an easy way to do this and are a good safety measure. The best way to stay safe at night is to unplug your displays before going to bed.
  • Protect little fingers:
    • Make sure there’s a bulb in each socket. When a bulb burns out, leave it in the socket until you are able to buy or find a replacement.
  • Don’t overload your circuits:
    • Check your breaker panel to see how much your home can handle and stay well within limits. Do not ignore tripped circuit breakers, as it’s happening for a reason.
  • Outdoor displays:
    • All outdoor lights should be connected to a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) outlet. They will automatically shut off when a current leak is detected. Cover outdoor plugs and connector joints with a water-resistant layer of plastic wrap and electrical tape.
  • Sparkle yes, Sparks no:
    • Never use electric decorations on artificial trees with metallic needles, leaves, or branches. Instead, place colored spotlights above or beside the tree, never attached to it.

When you buy lights and extension cords, make sure they have the safety tag from Underwriters Laboratories (UL listed) and use only as intended. If you have a natural tree, make sure it is watered to prevent it from drying out and creating a fire hazard. Make sure artificial trees are flame retardant as well.

If you have any doubts about the ability of your electrical system to handle the holiday light display, have one of Armstrong’s licensed electricians come to your Lubbock, TX home to inspect your electrical panel. They may be able to add a circuit to your existing panel to ease the load.

Whenever you need an electrical contractor in Lubbock, TX and all of West Texas, make your first call to Armstrong Plumbing, Air & Electric. Something wrong? Better call Armstrong.