PG&E: Use safe, efficient lights for the holidays

/ 09:00 AM December 20, 2019

SAN FRANCISCO — With trees and houses lighting up the night, energy usage can skyrocket. Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) reminds its customers that holiday happiness is ensured when you pay attention to your energy bills and to your family’s safety. Older, non-energy-efficient lighting can severely impact customers’ power bills.


Light-Emitting Diode (LED) holiday lights are incredibly efficient and long-lasting.

  • Use LED lights to lower your energy costs. LED lights are 75 percent more energy efficient and last up to 25 times longer than traditional incandescent lights such as C4 and C9 bulbs. They can last up to 40 holiday seasons.
  • LED lights are shatterproof and shock resistant.
  • LEDs produce almost no heat, so they are safe to touch and greatly reduce the risk of fire.

Avoid Electrical Hazards


  • Before climbing ladders to string outdoor lights, check for overhead power lines nearby. Be especially aware of lines over your roof and lines attached to your home. Look up before raising ladders and other tall objects. Keep at least 10 feet away from overhead lines at all times
  • Never place yourself or any object such as a string of lights in a position that risks contact with a power line—the result can be fatal
  • Before stringing lights on outdoor trees, make sure tree limbs haven’t grown into or near power lines. Branches, entire trees and even the ground adjacent to a tree can become energized when trees contact power lines.

Prevent Fire Hazards

  • Avoid overloading extension cords and wall sockets by follow the manufacturer’s limits for the number of light strings that can be safely connected together
  • Check all light strands for cracked or broken plugs, frayed insulation or bare wires. Worn cords can cause fires, so discard damaged sets of lights
  • Don’t place cords under rugs, furniture or other appliances. If covered, cords can overheat or become frayed, increasing the risk of fire
  • Always turn off decorative lights—indoors and outdoors—when leaving the house and before going to bed, or use timers or sensors to turn them off automatically
  • Do not place your holiday tree near a heat source such as a fireplace or heat vent. The heat will dry out the tree, making it more susceptible to fires caused by heat, flame or sparks

To learn more about PG&E’s energy efficiency efforts, visit

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TAGS: efficient lighting, holiday electric bills, holiday safety, LED lights, safe lighting
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