Safety Tips for Hanging Holiday Lights 

‘Tis the Season… before climbing your roof armed with a dozen string lights, check out these safety tips to make sure you’re as sure-footed as one of Santa’s reindeer.

‘Tis the Season… Safety Tips for Hanging Holiday Lights

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! It’s time to break out the boxes of lights and put up a beautiful Christmas display on your roof. But first, here are a few safety tips to keep in mind.

You’re armed with dozens of stringed lights, ready to try and outdo everyone else in the neighborhood with a dazzling display this December. But don’t make the mistake of getting carried away into thinking you’re as sure-footed as one of Santa’s reindeer.

Putting up holiday decorations can be dangerous –CSPC data shows that on average, there are around 250 decorating-related injuries every day during the holiday season, many related to rooftop or ladder falls. A trip to the ER is not the most ideal way to kick off the Christmas season, so here are some safety tips to remember before decorating. 

1. Check Materials Ahead of Time

Before climbing your roof, first plug in your lights and make sure they are all in working order. Check on your outlets and replace burnt out bulbs or strings while you are safely on the ground. Not only is this safer than taking care of while on a ladder, but it will save you time and frustration as well.

2. Time of Day and Weather Predictions

Even though it might be tempting to put up your decorations at dusk so you can see all the twinkling lights, it’s much safer to decorate during daylight hours. This way you can see what you are doing and won’t feel rushed to finish before dark.

Check the weather forecast for the day and avoid putting up decorations during wet or windy weather. Also, make sure your roof is free of snow, ice, and other debris. A clean roof is a safe roof!

3. Safe Gear and Equipment

What should you use when up on your roof? Here are some guidelines:

• Use a sturdy ladder that won’t slip and is tall enough for you to reach without overextending
• Avoid light bulbs that are 7-volt or higher as these can result in overheating and fire. Make sure the lights you use are specifically designed for outdoor use.
• Wear non-slip shoes, such as boots with rubber soles.
• Never use staples, nails, or glue on your roof. Instead, opt for plastic or magnetic hooks that are easily removeable.
• Do not overload circuits and use proper outdoor extension cords when needed. 

4. Ladder Safety

Most holiday decorating injuries come from falling off a ladder. Avoid being a part of this statistic and follow ladder safety guidelines:

• Use a solid, sturdy ladder
• Do not use your ladder on a slanted surface – instead, make sure both legs are resting on flat, level ground
• Use the ladder at a 75-degree angle
• Ask a second person to stand below and hold the ladder in case it slips 

Lastly, if you notice damage or anything of concern while up on your roof, do not hesitate to contact an expert before heavy winter sets in. Get a free roofing quote from Enterprise Roofing or call 937-453-3933 with any questions!

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