Expert warns of common Christmas tree mistakes that risk house fires – plus why you should never put tinsel on a tree | The Sun

WITH Christmas Day less than three weeks away, many of us will have put up our Christmas trees and will be busy preparing for the big day. 

It’s officially time to get out the tinsel, fairy lights and gonks (if you’re a fan), but if you want to make your home look like a Christmas wonderland, it’s important that you are aware of the common mistakes that could risk house fires. 

With lights and decorations galore, there's an increased risk of fire during the Christmas period.

And with lots going on and people very excited, it's important that you take the necessary precautions to keep your home safe this festive season. 

Candles and open flames pose one of the highest risks to the safety of your home.

With this in mind, Alan Boswell Landlord Building Insurance have shared their top safety tips to avoid fires this Yuletide.

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Around 85 percent of UK adults have a Christmas tree up in their household each year according to Scribbler’s 2022 Christmas tree statistics. 

For those choosing real trees, it's so important to keep them hydrated – as a dry Christmas tree is incredibly flammable.

When you select a tree you need to look out for a number of signs to make sure it is fresh.

Needles on the tree should be green and hard to pull from branches and the trunk should be sticky to touch.

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If needles fall off then the tree may have been cut for too long and may be a fire hazard.

Also, it’s important that you trim your trunk as you would with fresh flowers.

You also need to place your tree in a bucket of water when you first get it. 

Then, remember to check the water level every couple of days to avoid it drying out, as this will make your tree less of a risk.

You should also avoid putting a tree near a heat source, such as an air vent or fireplace.

You should also ensure that your space isn't over-cluttered with things, especially flammable materials such as paper banners or tinsel as this poses a fire hazard.

Not only this, but you may have more cables around your house so that you can light up your decorations, but be sure to never run the cables underneath flammable items such as rugs or carpets.

Wrapping paper should be disposed of on Christmas morning too, as it's incredibly flammable.

Obviously a huge fire risk is open flames, and whilst candles are aesthetically pleasing, especially at Christmas, they need to be kept out of reach of children and pets.

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As well as this, they should be placed on fireproof materials such as stone, to minimise the risk of fire. 

Choosing to use battery-powered candles around your home can mitigate fire risk from open flame, also meaning Christmas trees and plants won't catch fire.

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