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Fire Safety Tips for the Holidays

December is here, which means holiday celebrations, loads of beautiful lights, candles, and holiday greens! While we enjoy the beauty of the holiday season, items like lights and greens can pose huge fire risks if you aren’t careful, which can turn your celebrations into devastation. Did you know? Christmas trees are the cause of roughly 200 home fires every year. Plus, there are approximately 840 home fires each year caused by holiday decorations other than Christmas trees (300 of which are due to candles!).

Just because holiday decorations can be a fire risk, doesn’t mean you can’t decorate for the holidays, though. We’re here with several tips to make your holidays safer!

If Christmas is your holiday, then the tips below will help immensely in keeping your home free of fire.

  • When getting a live Christmas tree, be sure to pick one with fresh green needles that don’t fall off at a touch. Once your Christmas tree is home, cut off roughly 2 inches from the trunk to increase the amount of water the tree soaks up. Water your tree often, and place it somewhere that’s 3 feet or more from heat sources!
  • If you’re putting decorative lights on your tree, use lights that bear the label of a recognized testing laboratory, as these will be safer. And never leave lights turned on when going to bed or leaving the home!
  • When placing lights outside the home, attach them with clips rather than staples or nails as these things can damage the insulation on the wire.
  • When the holiday season is over, get rid of your tree promptly.
  • If you need to use an extension cord for holiday lights or other items requiring electricity, use heavy duty ones and do not run them beneath rugs or in high-traffic areas. Doing so is just an accident waiting to happen!
  • DON’T OVERLOAD CIRCUITS! (Remember National Lampoon’s?)
  • Try to go with holiday decorations that are fire-resistant or flame retardant.
  • Check any strings of lights for indoor/outdoor use to ensure you’re using the correct ones, and double check that all lights on a string are working.
  • Check for any frayed or broken cords. If you find one, get a new one immediately!
  • If you’re using candles as part of your holiday decorating, be sure you’re placing them far out of reach of pets and children. Also, make sure anything flammable is at least 3 feet away (such as holiday greenery or stockings), and always blow the candle out when you leave the room.

If Hanukkah is your holiday, you’ll find the tips below to be helpful this holiday season.

  • Put your menorah in an area that has less daily traffic, so there’s less risk of it being knocked over.
  • Ensure your menorah is placed on a non-flammable, stable surface that is out of reach of pets and children.
  • Be sure the non-flammable, stable surface is one that is at least 3 feet away from flammable items, like decorations placed around the menorah.
  • Never leave your menorah unattended!

We at Dryer Vent Wizards wish you and your loved ones a very happy holiday season!

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