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How to Prevent a Christmas Tree Fire: a Tips Guide

family in front of christmas tree with window in the background
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Did you know that Christmas trees result in $13 million in property damage every year? It’s true, according to the Christmas Tree Association. There’s a potential catastrophic damage when homeowners run their heat higher in the winter, causing the forced hot air to dry the tree out. With most trees wrapped in lights, if there’s an electrical malfunction, the combination can be dangerous. Instead of causing a Christmas tree fire this year, learn easy tips and tricks to make sure your home and loved ones stay safe this season. 

Helpful Tips and Tricks

Having a real Christmas tree is great! It makes your home smell like fresh pine, and it brings the Christmas season right to your family room. However, when you have a real Christmas tree, you need to take precautions to ensure that you don’t accidentally start a Christmas tree fire. Luckily, these tips and tricks require little effort, and can be easily integrated into your everyday routine. If you have kids, some of these tasks can be great add-on chores for the Christmas season, just to make sure they end up on the nice list. 

Trim the Christmas Tree

This may seem like a crime, but trust the process! Trimming your Christmas Tree allows it to stay hydrated for longer. This way, your tree won’t shed pines and dry out. Shedding needles is something to keep your eye on! This is showing that the tree is dehydrated and drying out quickly. In the long run, this is helpful in case your home is too warm and causes your tree to dry out. 

Use Proper Lights

Before installing your lights, make sure that you’re buying reputable brands. There are lights that have been tested and approved for safety. It’s also in good practice to not have more than three lights per extension cord. These can heat up easily, so don’t overdo it. 

Inspect Lights and Decorations, Throw Away Excess (avoid combustible ornaments)

Before putting your decorations on the tree, lay them out on the floor and inspect for any damage or any combustible ornaments. Combustible ornaments include pinecones, straw, hay or leaves. 

Make sure the lights don’t have any stray wires. You should throw away any lights that look frayed or worn out. Instead of taking the chance and putting these lights on your tree, cut your losses and buy new. 

family setting up christmas tree in a darker room

Water the Tree Daily

Having a dry tree is a recipe for disaster when it comes to Christmas tree fires. A dry tree is more susceptible to burning down. Make sure to fill the water bowl under the tree daily, and check for signs that your animals could be taking from the water source, as well. 

Choose Location Wisely

When finding a spot for your tree, there are a few spots to avoid. First, avoid putting your tree near a staircase if you live in a multi-level home. If a tree does catch on fire, it can easily hit the stairs and affect both levels, and cut off exit points. Second, don’t put your tree next to a stove or fireplace, for obvious reasons. Last, avoid placing a tree near a radiator or any heat vents. This can make the tree dry out faster. 

Avoid Candles or Fire Near Tree

Candles are gorgeous on a cold winter night, but they’re also a huge liability. Instead of using a candle, buy battery operated candles. Not only does this prevent fires, but you can set it on a timer and have the aesthetic look without having to put in effort. One of the biggest factors in causes for a christmas tree fire is when the tree was placed too close to a heat or fire source. 

firefighters putting out a fire with foam linked to PFAS contamination

Unplug Christmas Tree at Night

To avoid any overnight disasters, unplug the tree at night or whenever you’re out of your home. Only have the lights on when you’re at home and near the tree to monitor the safety of it. 

Make Sure your Smoke Detectors are Fully Operational

This should be done regularly, Christmas tree or not. To make sure your home stays safe, always check to make sure that your smoke detectors batteries are functioning properly and the detectors are fully operational. 

Keep Your Pets Away From the Tree

This may be the most challenging part of having a Christmas tree. Pets are seemingly obsessed with any new addition to your household. To combat this, keep the tree in areas where they can’t reach so they won’t accidentally knock down your tree. You can use baby gates or small fences. You can also keep ornaments up higher so they’re less likely to go after it. If you have a cat, use citrus spray to deter them from going after the tree. 

family setting up their christmas tree during the day

The Best Protection is Detection

Having a Z-Wave Smoke Detector can be a life saver. Instead of losing your home to a Christmas tree fire, called ONIT today. Our smoke detectors can be professionally installed with one of our licensed technicians. To learn more about how ONIT can secure your home, visit us online or give us a call at 1-833-433-0331 today.

With ONIT, if you buy a water system, we’ll give you a $2,000 security system for only $1,000. That way, you can protect your family from contaminated water and protect them with a safe home. Additionally, we’re offering a free security and water system for free with the purchase of a solar system. Our customers get $1500 in vouchers to be used with security, water, and solar. Take advantage of this great offer today by calling us at 1-833-433-0331. 

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