Christmas Tree SafetyFree Home Safety Assessment!
One of the main symbols of Christmas is a beautiful Christmas tree pointing to the heavens. This symbol is magical in and of itself, but must be treated with care or it can become extremely dangerous. This holiday season we want you to be as safe as possible by following a few simple rules when it comes to your Christmas tree safety.
Fresh Christmas Trees
The first step in having a safe Christmas tree is making sure it is fresh. Go to a lot that sells a lot of trees to make sure they are rotating their stock. Look at the needles, are they dry or curled up? This is a sign that the tree is drying out and is a recipe for disaster as are needles that are falling off of the tree when you touch them. Needles should be soft and supple. They should bend rather than break. Make sure you blow all of the dead needles off of the tree before you bring it into the house. You only want the fresh needles to be on the tree. You can also squirt the tree with a hose to get them off, but a leaf blower seems to work best. For those in a drought prone area, please just stick to a leaf blower.
Once you’ve selected your tree, you should cut about one inch of the base off so water can get into the tree. This should be done immediately before you bring it into the house and put it in your tree stand with water in it. If you are physically unable to do it yourself, ask a family member or neighbor to do it for you. I know they will do it at the lot when you buy the tree, but those outside cells will begin to die in a hurry and they are often crushed transporting it back to your house. If at all possible do it right before you bring it in the house.
Choose your tree base wisely. Too small of a base and your tree may fall over and it won’t provide adequate water to your tree. As soon as you get your tree inside the house, water it. Don’t do the lights or ornaments first, water it immediately. You want the water getting to the tree as soon as possible. There are any number of solutions people swear by that will keep your tree fresher. If you want to try one, go for it. The important thing is to make sure it has enough water. Check it everyday, and the first few days, check it multiple times a day. I’ve had trees that sucked all the water in the base up in just a few hours the first time. The important thing is to not let the tree run out of water.
Now it is time to decorate your tree. Always keep your tree away from any type of open flame like candles or fireplaces. In the past, it was tradition to put candles on the tree. This should never occur. Use lights instead. Make sure you inspect the lights before you put them on the tree. There should be no missing or loose bulbs. Check the wires to make sure there are no cuts or areas where bare wire is showing. If there is a female plug that is bare, make sure you put a cover on it to keep little fingers out as well as to keep needles from going inside. Never hang ornaments from the wires on lights. Ornaments should be hung from the tree branches only.
One last thing to consider is the location of your tree. If at all possible, keep them away from the heater vents. Divert the warm air away from the trees to keep them from drying out too quickly. That warm dry air continually blowing over those needles will make a tree dry out extremely quickly. We hope you have a wonderful and safe holiday season and wish you a Merry Christmas.
Take your Christmas Tree outside on December 26th!!!