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Gutter-Related Health & SafetyHome & Garden

Safety Tips for Hanging Outdoor Christmas Lights

By November 25, 2015October 17th, 2023No Comments

A house strung with colorful Christmas lights is a favorite holiday sight for most, yet stringing lights along your roof and gutters can be a real safety hazard if not done properly. Before you prepare this year’s dazzling display, here are some important tips to stay safe and keep your house looking merry and bright.  

  • Inspect lights for fraying and damage. When you remove your holiday lights from storage or new lights from their packaging, check the cords to make sure they are not frayed or otherwise damaged. A damaged cord may result in an electrical short which could damage your lights and decorations, and potentially lead to a fire. Discard any damaged lights.
  • Use outdoor lights only. If you hang lights outdoors, make certain they are rated for outdoor use. Indoor lights often have thinner insulation which can become cracked and damaged when exposed to the elements, resulting in a fire hazard.
  • Hang properly. When you are hanging lights, avoid piercing the light cable with staples, nails or screws. Use plastic light clips or install insulated hooks to wrap the cord around. If you have a Gutter Helmet® leaf guard, the patented nose-forward design may interfere with hanging certain types of light clips on gutters. Find out alternative hanging methods to use when you have a Gutter Helmet.
  • Mind the cords. If extension cords are required for outdoor lighting, use those designed for outdoor use with three-prong plugs. Never use an indoor cord outside. Plug the cord into a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlet that will automatically shut off if an overload occurs. When running extension cords along the ground, be sure to elevate plugs and connectors with a brick or rock to keep snow, water and debris out of the connections.
  • Practice ladder safety. Just as with cleaning house gutters, be sure to follow these safety tipswhen using your step or extension ladder to hang Christmas lights.

Protect Your Home Year-Round

Find out more about the Gutter Helmet and Helmet Heat® systems by calling (800) 824-3772 to schedule a no-obligation quote with a dealer near you. Our certified crews work year-round to help you stay protected from leaves, debris and ice build-up in gutters.