Holiday decorating and safety for outside your home

We are two weeks away until Christmas! While you are getting your home donned in holiday garb, make sure you take some safety precautions, as the presence of additional clutter can make for safety and fire hazards.

Here’s some holiday decorating and safety tips for outside your home:

Holiday lights

  • Use certified lights only, from organizations such as: CSA, ULC, cUL, etc.
  • Use indoor lights inside only, and outdoor lights outside only. Outdoor lights burn too hot for the indoors, and indoor lights aren’t weatherproof for your exterior.
  • Inspect your lights before use, check for cracked bulbs and frayed wires on the strings.
  • A maximum of three light strands should be connected together.
  • Don’t overload your circuits or outlets.

Snow removal

  • Before you begin, ensure you are properly hydrated, your muscles are warmed up and that you have the right equipment for the job.
  • Try using an ergonomic shovel, they are generally more lightweight and designed so you don’t have to bend your body as much.
  • Try pushing snow instead of lifting it when you are shovelling. If you need to lift snow, bend with your knees. For big snow dumps, be sure to take breaks so you don’t overexert your body.
  • Avoid dumping snow on sidewalks, streets or covering drains; this will only turn a small problem into an even bigger one.
  • Use calcium chloride instead of salt to de-ice, and never use hot water, it will simply freeze and turn into even more ice.
  • It’s a good idea to keep a small shovel and some kind of traction material (sand, gravel, etc.) in your car in case it gets stuck while you’re out.
  • Make sure your walkways, sidewalks and driveways are clear of ice and snow, particularly if you’re expecting little guests or seniors during the holidays.

And if you missed our blog last week, we shared some holiday decorating and safety tips for inside your home as well. Stay safe and happy holidays!