Create a Christmas Lighting Plan for Your Home

Long Island, NY December 13, 2020

Create a Christmas Lighting Plan for Your Homeclassic holiday christmas lights display illustration

Christmas lights don’t put themselves up! Those extraordinary displays you see are most likely done by professionals. Don’t get overwhelmed, but there are some important things to consider first.


Christmas Lighting Safety

Thousands of people are admitted to the emergency every year (and dozens die) due to Christmas lighting accidents. Safety is the first thing to consider when planning and decorating your home.

Before you start, make sure you have the proper equipment for the job. Check your lights and outdoor extension cords for damage. If there are frayed wires, damaged insulation, or loose parts, replace them. Make sure all of your electrical products have been tested by an independent testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratory (UL).

Make sure you are very familiar with electrical safety. Go over this Electrical Safety Checklist before you begin.


‘Tis the season for lighting… and ladder safety!

The Electrical Safety Foundation International put together this checklist for when purchasing and installing Christmas lights and decorations. Although it wouldn’t be the holidays without them, not even Christmas cheer is worth an electrical tragedy.

  • Always purchase electrical decorations and lights from reputable retailers.

  • Use lights approved for safe use by a nationally recognized testing laboratory.

  • Never connect more than three strands of incandescent lights together.

  • Consider purchasing LED lights, which use less energy and run cooler than traditional incandescent lights.

  • Before decorating, determine how many outlets are available and where they are located.  Plan your displays accordingly.

  • Carefully inspect each electrical decoration.  Cracked or damaged sockets, loose or bare wires, and loose connections may cause a serious shock or start a fire.

  • Follow the manufacturer’s use and care instructions that accompany electrical decorations.

  • Avoid overloading electrical outlets with too many decorations or electrical devices. They can overheat and cause a fire.

  • Make sure that cords are not pinched in doors, windows, or under heavy furniture, which could damage the cord’s insulation.

  • Do not mount or support light strings in a way that might damage the cord’s insulation.

  • Always unplug electrical decorations before replacing bulbs or fuses.

  • Turn off all indoor and outdoor electrical decorations before leaving home or going to sleep.

  • Test your AFCI and GFCI outlets.


Ladder Safety

When you are putting up all of that holiday gear, here are some guidelines to follow in order to ensure your safety. The number of injuries caused by decorating is in the thousands this time of year. Getting hurt is not always preventable, but precautions must be taken nonetheless.


Always be sure to follow these safety rules when using a ladder:

  • Inspect ladder for damage before each use.

  • Place the ladder on a level, stable surface. Never try to increase its height by putting something underneath it.

  • Extension ladders should always reach three feet above the point that you need to reach.

  • Maintain three points of contact while on the ladder.

  • No matter how tempting, do not use the top-rung of a ladder.

  • Do not move the position of a ladder while you or someone else is on it.

  • Do not overload your ladder. Check the maximum load rating and don’t exceed it.

  • Always avoid electrical hazards.

Additional Christmas Lighting Safety:

  • Hang your lights during the day.

  • Never hang lights in stormy, windy, or wet weather.

  • Get weather alerts on your phone.

  • Assess your plan and equipment before you start decorating. Determine how many light strands you need and make sure to follow all manufacturer instructions for how many strands can be connected together.

  • LED lights emit less heat, last longer, and are more durable. We recommend them.

  • Hanging lights is a team effort. Always have at least one other person helping you with ladders, lights, tools, etc.

Now that you know the importance of holiday decorating safety, the Christmas magic can begin.


Contact Our Holiday Light Design Consultants at

Nassau/ Suffolk (631) 246 4558

and NYC and 5 Boroughs (646) 833 0843