You bought the Christmas tree and set it up in the living room and now you’re ready to do some decorating. There are some things that you must do to protect the home and its occupants from Christmas tree hazards.
Step 1: Do not place the tree near a heat source such as a baseboard, portable heater, or fireplace.
Step 2: Trim the lower branches on the tree if you have pets or small children. This will prevent eye injuries.
Step 3: Consider children and pets when hanging ornaments. Hang breakable ornaments or those with small or detachable parts or metal hooks on higher branches. Do the same with any ornaments that are, or look like, candy or food. Use florist’s wire to hang fragile ornaments, twisting it tightly around the branches.
Step 4: Keep pets away from the tree, preferably out of the room entirely, if possible. Cats love to jump into trees or perch on the branches, sending the tree toppling. Tie the tree to a hook in the ceiling to keep it upright. Keep glass ornaments away from pets because these may break and animals can cut themselves on the shards. Pets may also chew on the electrical cord coming from the Christmas tree lights. Hide these cords or purchase something that encloses wires and cords and that cannot be chewed by the pets.
Step 5: Do not use artificial snow spray because this can irritate the lungs of whoever inhales it.
Step 6: Use only extension cords and electrical decorations that have UL approval. Make sure the cords are not frayed. Turn off the tree lights when you leave home or go to bed.
Step 7: Once the tree is removed, do not burn its branches in the fireplace. This can result in creosote buildup, which is highly flammable.