For those who’ve seen National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, it’s nearly impossible to think about hanging Christmas lights on your roof without thinking about their comedic falls. While this is funny to watch, it isn’t funny when it happens to you. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do so you don’t personally recreate this scene this year.
Think Safety First
There are many reasons why you shouldn’t be climbing around on top of your home. Not only could you damage yourself, but you could also damage your shingles. With this in mind, there are a few other things you must remember when you’re hanging your Christmas lights, including:
- Never lean ladders on gutters or you could break your gutters and take a nasty fall yourself.
- Don’t use an old ladder.
- Only use the proper lights and cords. Your extension cords must be UL approved specifically for outdoor use and light should also be approved for indoor/outdoor use. This information should be found on their packaging.
- Make sure you check all your lights and cords before heading up to your roof. Don’t use them if they’re frayed or damaged. Only use them if they’re intact and working properly.
Plan the Activity Beforehand
Before heading out to your roof make sure you look at what you own or plan to buy. You want to make sure that your Christmas lights look good before you hang them and find they don’t. For instance, LED lights give off a slight bluish tint that make any incandescent lights look orange. In this case, it’s worth investing in more LED lights since they’ll save you money on your electric bill and won’t overheat. Two other areas to look at include:
- Where you want to hang your lights: Inspect your landscaping and gutters to decide where you want your lights to go and make sure you have enough lights that you won’t run out.
- Where your power source is located: Some homes don’t have many outdoor outlets so you may need to run your power through a window. Regardless of its location, this will limit your design.
Have What you Need for Properly Installing Christmas Lights
Besides knowing where you want to hang your Christmas lights, you must also make sure you have everything you need to make this possible. One thing you’ll want is light clips. Some lights already come with these attached or otherwise you can buy them separately. This is important because you don’t want to use screws, nails, or a staple gun because these are too hard to get down and also pose a huge hazard. Additionally, you don’t want to attach anything to your shingles, gutters, or bricks.
When you buy light clips separately, make sure you attach them to your lights before climbing your ladder. You don’t want to do this while you’re on your roof because you may lose your balance. A few other important tips you’ll want to heed include:
- Make sure you always work with short strands of lights.
- Never hit incandescent bulbs on your house or ladder because you could damage them and ruin the whole string. Of course, a broken bulb means you have shattered glass around and an exposed bulb can also be hazardous.
Inspect Your Roof for Issues as you Go
As you decorate your home this year, be on the lookout for any issues you may see with your roof. If anything arises, make sure you contact Done Rite Roofing so they can address the issue for you right away. Remember this small gift to yourself this year so a minor issue doesn’t quickly turn into a major one and you can enjoy your Christmas lights.
Picture Credit: Mariamichelle