Opting for a real Christmas tree this year? No doubt a real tree will make your house smell lovely. While you imagine walking through a forest of pine trees, there are some extra safety precautions you should take. Once you chop a tree down, it immediately begins to dry out, and will only drink up water for a limited amount of time. All that dry wood and pine needles can become a fire hazard. Also, if you have little ones at home, the best choice is probably an artificial tree. You wouldn’t want your child to tear off and swallow a bunch of pine needles. Here are some must-do safety measures if you buy a real Christmas tree.
Pick the right tree. You will want the freshest tree you can find. If possible, cut one down yourself. The needles should be green and not fall off when touched. The fresher the tree, the longer you have before it goes dry.
Place the tree in the right spot. Cut 2 inches from the base of the trunk so the tree can soak up water. Add water to the tree stand regularly. Make sure the tree is at least 3 feet away from any heat source, electric, gas or fire, and it should never block an exit.
Decorate the tree in a safe manner. If you have children or pets, attempt to child-proof your tree by keeping the delicate ornaments at the top of the tree, and soft, safe ornaments closer to the bottom of the tree. Only use lights that are designed for indoor use. Replace lights that have worn or broken cords. Never, ever use lit candles to decorate the tree, and make sure to turn off the Christmas lights when going to bed or leaving the house.
Dispose of the tree properly. Get rid of the tree as soon after Christmas as possible. Leaving a drying tree in a home longer than necessary is a fire waiting to happen. Don’t leave any unnecessary trees inside the house, in the garage or leaning up against the house. Call your local government to learn how to properly dispose of your tree.
We hope your family creates special memories around your Christmas tree this year. Have a safe and healthy holiday.