Avoiding the dangers of DIY Christmas lights
The holiday season is a time to adorn houses in Christmas lights and other electrical decorations, but it is also a particularly dangerous time of year.
Master Electricians Australia (MEA) has warned against dangerous DIY electrical work in the lead-up to Christmas, and emphasised the importance of remaining vigilant when it comes to electrical safety.
“Before you start installing Christmas lights that have been sitting in the shed for 12 months, take the time to check for perished insulation, exposed wiring or any other sign that your Christmas lights are not up to standard,” said MEA CEO Malcolm Richards.
“If you even suspect that your Christmas lights are damaged in any way, either get a qualified electrician to test them or just throw them away.
“The small cost of purchasing new lights is nowhere near the value of the safety of you and your loved ones — lights are easily replaced, human lives are not.”
Richards recommended a number of safety tips home owners should follow to avoid electrical incidents:
- Ensure you have safety switches installed, preferably on all circuits in your home, but definitely on the circuits powering your Christmas lights.
- When installing lights outdoors, only use lights designed for external use.
- Use extra-low-voltage lights and look for lights with a transformer.
- Always turn off outdoor lights during rain or storms.
- Ensure your outdoor connections are weatherproofed.
- Do not piggyback double adapters or power boards.
- Always keep clear of powerlines, swimming pools, driveways and walkways.
- Secure outdoor lights to fixtures and keep out of children’s reach.
He continued, “If you have extensive lighting decorations, enlist the help of a Master Electrician to install additional outdoor power points, rather than overloading existing circuits.”
For a detailed safety checklist, visit https://www.masterelectricians.com.au/electrical-safety.
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