Sparkies warn against dangerous DIY Christmas electrical work

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Sparkies warn against dangerous DIY Christmas electrical work

Master Electricians Australia (MEA) has today issued an urgent warning against dangerous DIY electrical work in the lead up to Christmas.

MEA CEO Malcolm Richards said that with many people looking to decorate their homes with Christmas lights and other electrical decorations over the coming weeks, that there is no substitute for safety.

“It is an exciting time of year, with homeowners across the country beginning to light up their house with Christmas decorations. But we can’t emphasise enough how critical it is that people are vigilant when it comes to electrical safety,” Mr Richards said.

“Before you start installing Christmas lights that have been sitting in the shed for 12 months take the time to check for perished insulation, exposed wiring or any other sign that your Christmas lights are not up to standard.

“If you even suspect that your Christmas lights are damaged in any way, either get a qualified electrician to test them or just throw them away.

“The small cost of purchasing new lights is no where near the value of the safety of you and your loved ones – lights are easily replaced, human lives are not.

Mr Richards also offered the following safety tips for home owners before installing Christmas lights:

  • Ensure you have safety switches installed – preferably on all circuits in your home, but definitely on the circuits powering your Christmas lights;
  • When installing lights outdoors, only use lights designed for external use;
  • Use extra low voltage lights – look for lights with a transformer;
  • Always turn off outdoor lights during rain or storms;
  • Ensure your outdoor connections are weatherproofed;
  • Do not piggyback double adapters or power boards;
  • Always keep clear of powerlines, swimming pools, driveways, and walkways; and
  • Secure outdoor lights to fixtures and keep out of children’s reach.

“By following these simple but effective tips, you’ll significantly increase your chances of staying safe this Christmas and avoid electrical tragedy,” Mr Richards said.

“If you have extensive lighting decorations, enlist the help of a Master Electrician to install additional outdoor power points, rather than overloading existing circuits.”

Master Electricians full and detailed safety checklist can be found on the MEA website at https://www.masterelectricians.com.au/electrical-safety.