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How To Light Up Your Home And Lawn For A Spooky Halloween Look

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With the use of different types of lighting and lighted decorations, you can create a scary sight for visiting trick-or-treaters to enjoy. Strategically placed lights can light up spooky outdoor displays and cast an eerie glow on your entire house. But before plotting the course your Halloween lighting displays will take, there are electrical safety issues to keep in mind.

Before the decorating begins:

Check the condition of outdoor outlets. You also need to be careful about overloading your electrical circuit breaker or fuse box by plugging too many cords into a single outlet. If you aren't sure exactly how much lighting your outlets and electrical panel box can handle, have a licensed electrician take a look. An electrician may also use an outlet tester to test the condition of the wiring in your GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) outlets and outdoor extension cords.

Practice extension cord safety. Use only extension cords made for outdoor use to prevent overheating. Plug an extension cord with a three-plug prong into a grounded three-slot outlet.

Look for the UL (Underwriters Laboratories) label on a cord and check for an extension cord's maximum amperage rating. This tells you how much current the cord can conduct safely. Outdoor extension cords with a built-in ground fault circuit interrupter and a locking mechanism that keeps the plug of the lights or electrical decoration and the plug on the extension cord connected offer added protection.

Just the same as with an electrical outlet, avoid plugging too many electrical power cords into one extension cord. Otherwise, your holiday fun may be ruined by the need to call in an electrician because a power surge shut off all the electricity in your home.

After you've taken care of all the electrical safety issues, you can begin setting the stage for an illuminating Halloween.

Once the decorating begins:

Choose the right types of lighting to get the look you want. Use strings of Halloween lights, colored lights, black bulbs, and flood lights to illuminate your yard and Halloween displays. Consider the use of strobe lights, which add even more fun.

Plan the colors of the lights you use. For instance, you may want to use black lights at the inside of windows if you use blue or red lighting outside on the lawn. Orange lighting on the outside colors the exterior of your home for Halloween without being scary.

But if a frightening look is your goal, red lighting can create the effect you want. Blue lighting adds a ghostly look to your lawn and Halloween displays, while green lighting casts a ghoulish atmosphere.

Go fluorescent. Mix in some fluorescent light bulbs with your Halloween lighting indoors or out. If you decide to use fluorescent lighting outside, use only bulbs rated for outdoor use. The bulbs are available in a variety of colors. Compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs also save energy, using only about 13-18 watts of power to create the same amount of light as a standard 60-watt incandescent bulb.

Focus on details. Light up the bare trees on your lawn by directing floodlights on the ground up toward the trees for a creepy look. If you want a more colorful and festive look, use contrasting Halloween colors by shining lights onto a tree's branches and trunk or onto your house.

Consider how much illumination you want. Whether you illuminate the outside of your home, trees on your lawn, or Halloween displays, the proper amount of lighting will make your decorations visible without making them look stark.

For more information, contact local professionals like Royal Plus Electric.


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