Be fire-smart this holiday season about your holiday tree. Christmas tree fires are not common, according to the National Fire Protection Association, but when they do occur, they are likely to be serious.
So here are 10 important safety tips to remember, most of which apply to fresh cut trees:
- When picking an artificial tree, be sure it is labeled, certified or identified by the manufacturer as fire retardant.
- When you pick a fresh cut tree, select the freshest one you can find. Its needles should be green and hard to pull from the branches. Needles shouldn’t break when you bend them between your fingers. Don’t buy or put up a tree too early in the season either.
- Before placing the tree in the stand, cut two inches from the base of the trunk. Then make sure the tree is at least three feet away from any heat source, like fireplaces, radiators, candles, heat vents or lights.
- Make sure the tree is not blocking an exit from your home.
- Add water to a fresh tree right away and keep watering it daily.
- Use lights on your tree that are labeled by a recognized testing laboratory. Some lights, by the way, are only for indoor or outdoor use. Replace lights that have worn cords or loose bulb connections.
- Never use lit candles to decorate the tree whether fresh or artificial.
- Always turn off the Christmas tree lights before leaving home or going to bed.
- Get rid of the tree when it starts dropping needles. Find a community recycling program where you can take the tree. Do not store the tree in your garage; and don’t try to burn it in an outdoor or indoor fireplace.
- One final idea to try: If you have a swimming pool, you can tie a rope to your freshly bought tree and drop it into the pool overnight. This allows the entire tree to soak up water.
For ideas on keeping your Christmas tree fresh, along with more tips and information for your house, home, castle or cabin, visit Arizona’s largest collection of homeowner DIY advice and information at RosieontheHouse.com.
And if you are in need of a quality contractor you can trust, visit our list of Arizona’s very best contractors or service providers for your home improvement projects at RosieontheHouse.com, Arizona’s most trusted referral network.
Tune in to KTAR every Saturday morning from 7-11 a.m. for the Rosie on the House broadcast!