As you make your lists and check them twice, here’s one to help make sure your holiday celebrations are safe and nice.  


  • Connecting more than three strings of incandescent lights together
  • Overloading outlets with decorations
  • Using decorations with cracked or damaged sockets, loose or bare wires or loose connections
  • Connecting multiple extension cords
  • Improperly using cords by nailing or stapling them, pinching them by furniture, placing them in doors or windows, or covering them with rugs
  • Leaving home or going to bed without turning off all indoor and outdoor electrical decorations


  • Watering your Christmas Tree daily
  • Keeping all decorations at least 3 feet away from heating equipment or an open flame
  • Plugging outdoor electrical decorations into ground-fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) receptacles or portable GFCIs
  • Following manufacturers’ instructions and using products as they were intended regarding indoor and outdoor use
  • Purchasing electrical decorations from reputable retailers and that are approved by a national recognized testing lab such as UL (Underwriters Laboratory), Intertek (ETL). or Canadian Standards Association (CSA).
  • Decorating with LED lights, which use less energy and run cooler than traditional incandescent lights.