What's Buggin' You? Christmas lights up in March

11:05 AM, Mar 12, 2012   |    comments
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What's Buggin' You with Kate Larsen

WOODLAND, CA - Almost everything has a shelf life and Christmas lights are no exception. Holiday light displays are a wonderful tradition but there is frustration among some News10 viewers about lights being left up on houses too long after Christmas.

"Our neighbor insists on leaving his christmas lights up until now, it's March 7," says Jacque Young who lives in Woodland and is tired of seeing her neighbors light strands strung up on his house and on his front lawn. "He looks lazy and it detracts from our neighborhood and it's a nice neighborhood and I love living here and I don't like to have to see that every time I walk out of my door."

In San Diego, there's actually a law against leaving holiday lights up too long. You can be fined $250 if you leave lights up past February 2. Although, according to the San Diego City Attorney's office, enforcing the law is not a top priority.

If your community has a H.O.A. (home owner's association) -- there may be strict policies regarding Christmas lights. Many H.O.A.'s require that lights be taken down two weeks after christmas.

Neighborhood aesthetics are not the only reason to take holiday lights down. Paul Cueller, a professional light installer with Polar Lites, Inc., says leaving lights up for more than about six months can be a safety hazard. Lights have "a rubber plastic coating that can wear from the heat, the cold, the wind."

Cueller says a little rain on a broken light, next to a metal roof gutter can spark a fire. Cueller says he saw a fire start in a house where too many light strands were plugged in together and recommends speaking to your neighbors if they have lights up for too long. "Too many lines together, the circuits overloaded and that's what caused that line to melt and actually scorched a house."

If something is bugging you, then you can bug News10 Reporter, Kate Larsen! You can email her at bugkate@news10.net.


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