The holidays are a time to have fun and spend with family. Make sure your home is as safe as possible to protect the people and things you love. Keep an eye on lights, candles and other fire hazards, as well as other threats to you and your family’s safety. Here are some things to keep an eye out for this season:
Each season, you should inspect your holiday lights. Get rid of any frayed cords, cracked lamp holders and loose connections. If you need to replace any bulbs, make sure you unplug the string of lights first. You should never leave any lights on or candles lit when you are not home or asleep. This increases the risk of a fire hazard and it’s better to be safe than sorry, my friend!
When you purchase lights, extension cords, spotlights, decorations and gas appliances look for the certification marks from organizations including CSA International, UL and ELT to ensure the products you are purchasing pass all safety and performance requirements.
Picking the Right Tree
When you look for that perfect tree, it’s safest to buy a freshly cut tree. Older, dried out evergreen trees are more likely to catch fire. Keep your tree watered and away from any open flames.
If you are using a ladder to put up your lights, choose a ladder right for the job. Look for the certification marks mentioned previously to indicate the ladder is as safe and reliable as possible. When hanging lights outside, keep electrical connections away from metal gutters. To secure your lights in place, use insulated tape and plastic clips instead of metal nails or tacks.
Gas and Carbon Monoxide
It is dangerous to use your gas fireplace without a glass barrier. If there are cracks in your fireplace or glass barrier, don’t start a fire. Ask a professional to help replace parts and evaluate the condition of your fireplace.
Test your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms every month and replace the batteries if necessary. There should be one of each on each level of your home, preferably near bedrooms. A qualified heating contractor can check on your heating and venting system maintenance. Replace furnace filters frequently during the months you use heat.
If you are currently house hunting or looking to refinance during the holidays season, get a free rate quote to estimate your monthly payments and connect with one of our dedicated mortgage advisors. Don’t do mortgages like your parents did. Do it digitally, with vLoan. Follow @vLoanMortgage on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to keep up to date with our monthly campaign #HomeForTheHolidays.