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Electrical Experts Article - December 21/January 22

Top 10 Christmas Lighting Safety Tips

As Christmas approaches and you bring the fairy lights down from their storage areas, follow these top 10 electrical safety tips from Charles Wisdom at Electrical Experts in Coventry, to make sure your Christmas is safe and sparkles!

  1. Lights that have been stored away in the loft or garage may have suffered damage. Make sure any frayed leads or broken connectors are replaced before use. Please don’t be tempted to make a botched repair, if in doubt I would consider buying a replacement set for safety’s sake.
  2. Never overload sockets with your Christmas lights as this could result in overheating, electric shocks, short-circuiting and potentially cause a fire.
  3. To cope with winter weather, exterior Christmas lights should either be low voltage – 12V or 24V – or protected by a Residual Current Device (RCD) that will automatically kick into action and break the circuit in the event of a fault. Cables should never be fed through doors or windows, as this could cause damage.
  4. Ensure that cables are fully unwound. They can overheat and potentially cause a fire if they are left coiled on a reel.
  5. Trailing wires and lighting leads are one of the most common causes of household trips and falls. Ensure that any cables or extension leads are not left across pathways and cannot be easily grabbed by children and pets.
  6. Never have any lighting equipment, decorative or otherwise, near a water source unless they are manufactured for that environment. If in doubt consult the manufacturers of the products.
  7. Turn off the Christmas lights, not just the ones on the tree but all the other ones around your house before going to bed or when away from home, as this will greatly reduce the risk of fire.
  8. If you need to buy new lights as last year’s ones really have seen better days, only buy from reputable outlets. There are lots of budget versions out there, especially at car boot sales and via large online outlets, but these are often not up to the required UK safety standards.
  9. Always check for the European Standard CE mark when buying new lights and indeed any new electrical products. Make sure to register your electrical products too (if applicable) as you can be notified of product recalls and safety issues.
  10. Ensure any lights you buy are suitable for the voltage they are being connected to, in the UK this is 230 Volts.

Do you find it difficult to get an electrician to come and do a small job? Call Charles, your local electrician, on 024 7695 0161.