Holiday Decor: Dos & Don'ts
As summer draws to a close, you may be starting to think about the holiday season. Gifting, caroling, comfort food, and lights. Lots of lights. Before you channel your inner Clark Griswold, make sure that you read our list of dos and don’ts as it relates to decorating in a way that allows you to stay safe and your roof to stay intact through the holiday season.
- Don’t Use staples, nails, screws or any other penetrating fasteners. Penetrating the roofing materials is a surefire way to turn your roof into a sieve.
- Do Use light clips or magnetic lighting. There are inexpensive clips made especially for christmas lights that clip onto the edge of the gutters. Another newer option is magnetic lighting, though it won’t stick to aluminum, but it works for steel or iron.
- Don’t Place large or heavy items on the roof. Adding weight to the roof could compromise the integrity of the structure and cause damage.
- Do Place them on the lawn instead. Use approved tie-downs to keep your decor safely anchored to your lawn.
- Don’t Put any items on a roof that has a steep slope. This poses an obvious safety hazard.
- Do Defer to the roof, not the decor. Tie or weigh down inflatables using clips or twine. If something doesn’t work with the roof, don’t put it up there.
- Don’t Place inflatables near other objects on the roof. Placing inflatable decorations near chimneys or electrical lines poses a fire hazard, tree branches could puncture the inflatable, and vents could become blocked by decorations that are placed too close to them.
- Do Download smartphone apps to control your outdoor lights. Rather than bundling up and fumbling around outside in the dark to unplug your lights for the night, there are smartphone apps that allow you to control your lights remotely.
- Don’t Go it alone. Defer to the buddy system when it comes to doing anything that involves climbing a ladder or working with electrical components.
- Do Enlist a spotter. A helper can help you with keeping the ladder steady, lending an extra hand and help keep you safe while putting up decorations. Fun fact: 10,000 - 15,000 christmas decor-related injuries are documented in emergency rooms each year in the US.
- Don’t Climb onto a wet roof, especially one with a steep pitch. Doing so runs the obvious risk of sliding off and falling to the ground below.
- Do Use lights made specifically for outdoor use. The package will specify whether the lights are meant for indoor or outdoor use.
- Don’t Risk a fire. Avoid 7-volt or higher bulbs, as they tend to get too hot and pose a risk of fire. Clear out gutters to avoid igniting dry leaves or debris with hot lights. Turn off lights overnight and don’t overload your outlets.
- Do Decorate in daylight in calm weather. Decorating in the dark is dangerous for obvious reasons and decorating in inclement weather poses risks related to electric shock, slipping, falling and flying objects.
- Don’t Walk on your roof. Roofs are generally not meant to be walked on. Doing so puts excessive pressure on the structure of the home, risking damage to the roof as well as posing a safety risk.
- Do Stay on the ladder using the rule of three: either one hand and two feet or one foot and two hands should remain on the ladder at all times. Never leave the ladder and do not bend over the roof or try to reach too far; these things pose risks related to falling.
This time of year is a great time to schedule your semiannual inspection to ensure that your roof is winter-ready. Even though we live in Florida, we still experience temperature fluctuations that could cause roofing materials to expand and contract.Call AKVM today (1.941.727.3996) to schedule your in-person (contactless) roof inspection.
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