ELECTRICAL SAFETY QUIZ

BELIEF #8:

OLD CHRISTMAS LIGHTS ARE SAFE.

False. They may have sentimental value, but the potential risks are greater. In the late 1970s, miniature-light sets began to be manufactured with an overload protecting safety fuse, says Ron Schoenfeld, president of the National Ornament & Electric Lights (NOEL) Christmas Association and vice president of sales and marketing for mini-light manufacturer Minami. As a result, the newer sets will overload and blow a fuse before any damage happens, he says.

Whether they're family heirlooms or just out of the box, inspect Christmas light sets for cracks, frayed cords and scorch marks, says Schoenfeld. If you spot any of these problems, discard the lights. Another NOEL guideline is to limit the number of bulbs strung together to six 50-bulb or three 100-bulb mini-light sets. With the larger size C9 or C7 type sets, connect no more than two 25-light strings.

 

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Adapted from "Shocking Truths About Electricity In The Home" by Mick Hans.

Family Safety and Health, Winter 1992-1993. 

Thanks to Ken Lomax for the info.

October Safety Poster

Posted 10/99