5 Safety Tips for Your Own Festival of Lights

5-Safety-Tips-Festival-Lights-My-Villa-PropertiesFor the past 25 years, in the town of San Ramon a neighborhood called Vista San Ramon has been delighting the public with a light show known only as “The Festival of Lights!

In fact, there are many neighborhoods in San Ramon that take pride in decorating their homes for the holidays. If you weren’t the first in your neighborhood to get your holiday lights up before the storm this past weekend, don’t worry. There is still plenty of time, and in the meantime indoor decorating is a great family activity when it’s raining.

With all of this additional decorating activity it’s important to think about safety. When it comes to safety we often think of smoke detectors, alarm systems, self defense and activities such as trick or treating. However; safety also encompasses home decorating, especially during the Holidays.

Here are a five tips for ensuring your holidays are safe and merry!

1. Emergency Plan
Do you have an emergency evacuation plan in case a fire breaks out in your home? According to the American Red Cross, each year there is an average of 40 home fires per day caused by children playing. In a November 2013 report from the National Fire Protection agency, Christmas trees (natural and artificial) were the first items to ignite in an average of 230 home fires per year from 2007 to 2011.

2. LED is best
LED or Light Emitting Diodes are quickly replacing older traditional lights because they are shatterproof, produce little to no heat which makes them safe to touch and reduces the risk of fire. As an added benefit, LED lights save on the energy bill and last up to 25 times longer than incandescent bulbs. PG&E estimates the average annual cost of using 300 LED holiday lights (size C6) is $0.56 as compared to $91.43 for the old large incandescent holiday lights.

3. Flame Resistant and Non-Combustible
One of our favorite activities to do is make holiday ornaments with the kids. Before you start making your own set, be sure to check that all materials are labeled flame resistant or non-combustible. Never place home made or purchased ornaments near the open flames or electrical connections.

4. Food Ornaments
While stringing popcorn is a fun activity and hanging candy canes (fake or real), it is best to keep ornaments and trimmings that look like real food off the tree. Children and pets may try to eat them!

5. Three on One
When decorating with lights be sure to connect only three set to one extension cord and use those that have been tested for the right conditions. Outdoor lights have been weather tested and should be used outside. Fasten outdoor lights securely to protect them from windy conditions.

These are just a few tips recommended during the holiday season. For a full list click the link below, which will help ensure your own “Festival of Lights” display is safe, fun, and merry!

Additional Sources: Consumer Product Safety Commission

If you are looking to buy or sell a home in the San Ramon Valley, contact Villa Properties at (925) 519-0794 or by email at mike@myvillaproperties.net and let us help make the process easier and enjoyable for you.