Keep your home safe when decorating the Christmas tree. Here are some tips:
If the strings look frayed or sockets are cracked, replace them.
Use only lights with the UL seal: A green holographic mark means the light strings should only be used indoors. A red holographic UL mark means the lights can be used either indoors or outside.
More than three is a crowd: Most manufacturers suggest you string together no more than three sets of lights for safety. Miniature lights are preferable because they have cool-burning bulbs.
Never leave the house or go to sleep with the tree lights on.
Do not use interior extension cords outside.
Keep bubbling tree lights away from children: Curious children may want to break them open and drink the liquid, which is poisonous.
During the holidays, guests come calling. We eat, drink and be merry.
But with extra people in the house, sometimes there's a strain placed on the, um, facilities.
And there can be troubles in the kitchen as well. Some visitors are used to garbage disposals in their own homes so they unknowingly shove things down a host's kitchen sink.
Professional plumbers say to beware of common problems this time of year. To help us prevent clogged toilets and backed-up sinks, they leaked some tips that may keep your money from going down the drain:
If you clean out your fridge to make room for holiday leftovers, throw the food away the day before trash goes out.
Run the disposal until you stop hearing the food churning. Keep water running for a few minutes after the food has been ground in the disposal, and make it cold water. Hot water makes fat liquid, causing it to coat drain pipes.
Never put grease, turkey drippings or gravy down the drain. Pour grease into a container, put it in the fridge so that it solidifies and then throw it out in the trash.
If your teeth are removable, take them out before drinking large amounts of alcohol.