Niagara Gazette —
• Make sure your lights have a safety listing from a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as the Underwriters Laboratories (UL). A safety approval seal means the lights have been tested and are safe to use. Use lights only as intended. Always unplug your lights before going to bed or leaving home.
• While reading labels, be sure to buy the right set for indoor use, outdoor use, or both.
• Before decorating, check all light sets for frayed wires, damaged sockets, or cracked insulation. If any defects are found, replace the entire set.
• All outdoor cords, plugs and sockets must be weatherproof. Keep electrical connections off the ground, and make sure wiring is kept clear of drainpipes and railings to prevent any risk of shock. It's also a good idea to use a ground fault circuit interrupter on each circuit. If current leaks through frayed or damaged wires, the interrupter will shut off the lights.
• Don't overload electrical circuits. Circuits in older homes carry a maximum of 1800 watts each while many newer homes can handle 2400 watts.