JOPLIN, Mo. - Chris Shaw from Vatterott College in Joplin says if you are buying lights, you should always make sure both the lights and any extension cords are UL-listed, which meets certain safety regulations. He also suggests l.E.D. lights since they use less electricity and there is a much less risk for fires. But if the lights you're using aren't new, he says inspect each light on the strand and the stand itself. Shaw says use common sense.
"Don't do the pile of a extension cords with a, you know, 15 things plugged into one receptacle. Turn them off at night, turn them off when you leave the house," said Chris Shaw, Vatterott College.
When putting up lights outside, Shaw says don't use staples, nails or tacks to hang light strands because they can damage the insulation inside the cords.