How To Stay Safe this Holiday Season!

Christmas tree

The holidays may be the most wonderful time of the year, but they’re also the busiest. Despite all of the shopping and holiday parties, it’s important to follow some home safety tips to keep your family and home safe.

Tree
It’s not too late to buy a real Christmas tree, in fact, now is the best time! When it comes to real Christmas trees, the fresher – the better! Cut 2 inches off of the bottom before placing it in water and be sure to keep plenty of water in the base. If you decide to purchase an artificial tree, look for the “fire resistant” label. Whether you have a real or fake tree, make sure to keep it at least 3 feet away from any heating source

Outlets/Cords
When decorating, avoid overloading the outlets. Overloading your outlets could cause an electrical fire. If you’re deciding to use an extension cord, pick out one that’s long enough to meet your needs. Be careful not to overload these as well and don’t plug one extension cord into another.

Lights
Make sure to turn off all of your decorations when you go to bed or when going away. Don’t forget about the outside lights – set an automatic timer to help you remember. An automatic timer for your outdoor lights is also a good idea if you’re going away for a few days during the holidays to make people think you’re home.

Smoke alarms
The smoke alarm should be checked once a month – but now is a great time to make sure they are working properly. With all of the extra lights and candles around your home, you want be alerted as soon as possible if a wire short circuits and catches on fire.

Candles
Candles create a cozy and warm ambiance during the holidays, but be careful where you put them. Place real candles up high and away from any flammable materials and put them out before leaving your home or going away. Opt for battery operated candles that will create the same glow and are much safer.

Sidewalk/porch
When having company during the holidays, keep the sidewalk and porch shoveled and salted, you wouldn’t want your guests to slip and fall. With the nights getting darker sooner, you’ll also want to make sure any outdoor walkways or stairs are properly and well lit.

Image credit: GatesMillsVillage.com

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Tom Gillece Sr. is the founder and president of Gillece Services in Pittsburgh, providing residential Plumbing, Heating, Cooling, Electrical and Waterproofing services throughout Western Pennsylvania. Established in 1980, Gillece has helped homeowners with all of their emergency, maintenance, repair and replacement needs for more than 30 years. For the latest news and offers, Gillece can be found on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.