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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Do Artificial Christmas Trees Catch on Fire?

12/8/2020 (Permalink)

image of Christmas tree lights plugged into a wall outlet do not plug too many lights into one outlet. Make sure to spread them out with a surge protector

Ahhhhh. The smell of a real pine in your home during the Christmas season really gives you the winter feels, doesn’t it? It is the main reason everyone wants a real tree. I mean, artificial trees have perks too. You do not have to trudge through the snow to go get it. And they do not catch on fire, says your mother. Or do they?

The answer may surprise you. Artificial trees are STILL a fire hazard. Of the roughly 354,000 home-structure fires that occur in the U.S. each year, about 160 are attributed to Christmas trees, according to the National Fire Protection Association. Those figures include both live and artificial trees, but the NFPA reports that “a disproportionate share of Christmas tree fires involved natural trees,” with live-tree fires outnumbering artificial-tree fires by about three to one and causing about 20 times more injuries.

So, I guess your mom is kind of right. Artificial trees are feasibly safer. But why? Real trees are made of wood and needles, a perfect combo for a fire, according to every great outdoorsman.  Needles and wood burn even more easily when they are dry, so you can reduce the risk by watering them every day. But remember---they are still technically made from firewood.

Romper.com reports, “artificial trees are made of a variety of materials. PVC, a type of plastic, is a common main ingredient. This is often wrapped around a metal frame and then covered in lights, ornaments, and fake "snow," which is often made of latex paint. Trees can also be made of metal or fiber optics. Some of these materials, like metals, aren't going to burn; others, like the PVC that most trees are made of, can catch fire.”

The moral of the story is---whenever you are bringing lights, pine, or plastic into your home; it needs monitored. Check the fuses on all your Christmas lights. A little fun fact. The lights will come with an additional fuse, so you can change it if needed. Also, do not plug too many lights into one outlet. Make sure to spread them out with a surge protector. Check all the wires for tears from being wrapped up all year.

SERVPRO of North Columbiana County wishes all our residents a safe and happy Holiday season. Winter fires, especially from Christmas trees, can be devastating. SERVPRO is here to assist with any type of fire damage. We know it is a stressful and confusing time, so you will need a caring expert to guide you through this crisis. Our professionals will always treat you with respect and empathy, and we will always treat your home and belongings with great care.

Please refer to our Fire Damage Tips - Until Help Arrives Guide and follow these tips to protect yourself and your property. And lastly, have a safe and happy Holiday Season from all of us at SERVPRO of North Columbiana County.

Have Questions? Call Us Today – (330) 921-4931

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