The snow is falling gently outside your window, and the eggnog is out on the kitchen table. Yes, we’ve made it to the holiday season, complete with Christmas trees and Menorahs for Hanukkah. But do you know how to protect your home? Be prepared with these tips and you won’t have to add your home’s safety to your list of things to worry about this holiday season.
Christmas Trees, Menorahs and Decorative Candles: Fire Hazard Dangers!
Decorating your home for Christmas or Hanukkah is one of the best parts of the holidays. What shines brightly however, burns even brighter. Your Christmas tree is a fire hazard, and for more than one reason! Make sure to keep it well hydrated: a dry Christmas tree is just asking to catch fire. You can water it on your own, or you can invest in a product like the Quench-a-Tree, which is disguised to look like a holiday present and waters your tree automatically for you!
In addition, it’s recommended to chop a small piece of wood off the bottom of your tree. This ensures that your tree will dry out slower, because it’s exposed to the air in that small area. Your Christmas lights on the tree are dangerous too. Leaving them on your tree turned on for too long could potentially start a fire. Inspect the wiring on your lights before using them. If they look stretched out or the wire has broken or is showing, buy new ones. It’s not worth burning your house down over some worn out decorative lights.
Keep An Eye On The Candles
Those decorative candles that smell like pine needles or fresh baked sugar cookies seem like a great idea at the time, but be sure to keep a watchful eye on them. Putting them near your tree could end in tragedy. If you have kids in the house, make sure to put them in a high place that can’t be reached, so little hands aren’t in danger of burning themselves or knocking the candle over and starting a fire. It’s probably a smart idea to keep a fire extinguisher near your tree, just in case.
8 Days Of Light…And Danger
Even menorahs, meant to symbolize everlasting light, can be a danger. Electric or otherwise, it’s recommended to blow out the candles or turn off the menorah when you leave your home for an extended period of time. Be sure to have long curtains and drapes pulled back when it is lit, to decrease the likelihood of lighting them on fire. Place aluminum foil underneath the menorah, just in case your candles are knocked out. This could be the difference between your whole house catchin on fire or a small accident.
Ruining your Floors and Worrying about freezing Pipes
When you welcome guests into your home, make sure they aren’t trekking in snow or salt. Not only can they stain floors, they can also cause warping to hardwood floors. The easiest way to prevent this? Make guests take off their shoes and boots when they walk into your home. Consider investing in some brightly colored rugs or runners to put near your front door. This will suggest to your guests that they should remove their shoes when they walk in.
Now that your floors are protected, remember to insulate your house efficiently in order to prevent ice dams. This is an easier problem to prevent, but fixing it could become costly. If your roof becomes too warm because of a radiator in your attic, icicles and excess moisture can occur. This translates to ceiling damage and leaking into your home. If your home is insulated, the moisture won’t be able to take its toll. This way you can enjoy an icicle free home and not worry about your roof.
Don’t forget to keep an eye on your pipes. In cold weather, they can freeze, creating a nightmare situation during the holiday season. One easy way to remedy this, is to leave faucets on at a steady drip for pipes that may be at risk. Pressure on the pipes during cold weather can contribute to pipes freezing or bursting. By leaving your faucet open, you can alleviate some of this pressure. Another solution is buying pipe sleeves, available at hardware stores or home centers. Keeping your pipes warm will help ensure that they don’t burst or freeze.
The holiday season is meant to be enjoyed with family and friends, not spent worrying about how to keep your home safe from hazards. With these tricks, you’ll be able to enjoy the holidays, and relax in knowing you’ve done your part to protect your home.