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Decorating safely and inexpensively for the holidays

Nov 30, 2010

PINEVILLE, La. – Cleco is encouraging families to make safety a tradition as they install their holiday lights and lawn decorations.

“As many begin climbing ladders and untangling strands of lights, Cleco reminds everyone to be aware of electrical safety as you decorate,” said Mike Joseph, Cleco’s risk manager. “Unplug lights when replacing bulbs and fuses, and be sure all light sockets are used as empty sockets can be a danger for shock. Also, remember to look up for electric lines when using ladders.”

Watch for outlets with too many plugs and frayed cords. According to Cleco, when it is time to replace light strands, using light emitting diode or LED lights could save money.

“We compared the cost of 20 strands of 100 bulbs for each of the three types of bulbs: C7, mini lights and LEDs,” said Anthony Bunting, vice president customer service and energy delivery. “The cost to operate the C7 lights for three hours each day for 30 days is $90, the cost for mini lights is $8.10 and the cost for LEDs is $0.72.”

Regardless of the types of bulbs used to decorate, Cleco recommends using them for their intended purpose. Only use outdoor lights for outdoor decorating and protect electrical connections from rain and dampness by wrapping with electrical tape and keeping connections off the ground. The company also suggests unplugging lights, indoor and outdoor, when away from home or while sleeping.

“Lights are a great way to help celebrate during holidays,” said Bunting. “Choosing bulbs that use less electricity means more money to spend on other things, and being safe as you decorate is the best gift you can give your family.”