Remember that scene in A Christmas Story where dad is decorating the christmas tree? After getting all the lights strung he desperately looks for an extra outlet in which to plug his holiday decorations. He lifted cords and moved wires, and upon finding an open spot he inserted the plug and everything goes dark. Pandemonium ensues as the family struggled to find their way in the dark and his son Ralphie’s commentary praising his old man’s prowess in changing a burnt fuse.
In my home we understand how dangerous it is to add dozens of electrical devices to a single outlet, and the only time we break this rule is by our home entertainment center where everything is fed into a surge protector made by a reputable brand. But what about that Christmas tree? You may find yourself adding dozens of strands of christmas cheer to your tree, chaining them end-to-end, looking feverishly around the room for a place in which to power this holiday joy. Once you do so your evergreen will illuminate like the Griswold’s home and you will greeted by a standing ovation by family, friends, and the occasional uninvited cousin.
How much power does this monument to holiday cheer draw? Will you spend your utility money on presents in December, only to find that January’s electric bill will require a second mortgage on your home?
There’s an easy way to know, and to help mitigate the risk associated with it. Before you plug your lights into the wall, connect an IQ Smart Socket to the outlet. This amazing little device will not only display the actual energy usage on the bright LED screen, informing you of the sheer volume of jigawatts you draw during the holidays, but gives you the added capability of controlling the power provided to that outlet.
Imaging creating a rule that says “When I leave the house, arm my system and turn off my tree.” Your home will be safe and those worries that “Christmas trees are dangerous” will quickly dissipate. Create an additional rule that says “when I unlock my door turn my christmas lights on” and each entryway will be greeted by a burst of gleaming holiday joy.
So go ahead, enjoy that extra mug of eggnog at the Johnson’s annual ugly sweater party. Your home is safe while you are gone.