IT'S that time of year again when everyone in your neighbourhood starts spreading their Christmas cheer with a jovial light display. Why not join in the festivities with a little light show of your own?
Untangling the last bunch you stored from the previous year can be a real hassle but the bigger problem might come from somewhere you can't see.
Before you start planning your decorating frenzy, there are some important safety tips to be aware of to make sure your Christmas is happy, healthy and bright, including:
- Use indoor lights indoors and outdoor lights outdoors.
- Buy Australian-compliant Christmas lights (be wary of purchasing non-compliant lights over the internet from overseas).
- Check old Christmas lights before re-using them.
- Always follow the manufacturer's instructions.
- Don't alter or modify lights.
- Ensure all lights, extension leads and power boards are suitable for the intended use (e.g external or internal).
- Test your safety switch and smoke detector to make sure they are working.
- Keep Christmas lights out of reach of children.
- Always turn off decorative lighting before going to bed or leaving your house.
Lights suitable for indoor use should only be used indoors. It's not safe to use indoor lights outdoors as they don't have the additional weatherproof ratings. If you have a living Christmas tree, switch off and unplug lights when watering the tree.
As with indoor lights, outdoor lights are best used outdoors as they are made to withstand the elements and meet additional safety standards. Always check to see whether the lights you have purchased require that the plug remain away from the effects of weather.
Another options is to consider using solar powered lights, LED or extra-low-voltage lights, as these are the safest options to prevent electric shock and prevent fires from over-heating.
Remember to always purchase your lights from a respected dealer who will know the equipment requirements for selling electrical Christmas decorations to keep you safe this silly season.