Christmas lights strung on a roof

It’s that time of year again, sleigh bells ringing, holiday parties galore— and getting out the ladder to decorate your home with Christmas lights. Whether it’s something you’ve done for years, or one of your first seasons hanging Christmas lights, crawling up on the roof can be dangerous.

Which is why our expert team at Dominion Roofing has come up with a few helpful tips to guide you in getting the job done safely. Keep reading for seven tips on how to best install and remove your Christmas lights this season.

Best Practices for Hanging Christmas Lights on Your Roof

Of course we all think it’s funny when Chevy Chase staples thousands of Christmas lights to his roof. But some people actually have similar ideas when it comes to attaching lights to their roof. Which brings us to tip number one.

Always use plastic clips for light placement

Never use nails or staples to install Christmas lights on your gutters or shingles. Not only could they puncture the lights themselves, but it’s also an easy way to mess up the roof. Plastic light clips are easy to find and will allow you to install and remove lights without causing any damage.

Be careful not to lift shingles and break the tar line

The tar line under your shingles is how they stay sealed to one another. By lifting them up, you might break the seal, making it easy for the next winter storm to blow them off the roof entirely.

Never place a ladder on the shingles

Safe ladder placement can be tricky, but you should never place your ladder directly against the shingles, as this could tear them off. Instead, opt for a safer ladder placement by using something called a ladder bracket to temporarily secure it to the side of the house or gutters.

When removing Christmas lights, never pull them down

It might be tempting to just pull and see what happens, but don’t. Yanking down Christmas lights will not only damage the lights themselves, but could severely damage your roof as well.

Never install or remove Christmas lights without a spotter

Even if you’ve climbed up on the roof a million and one times, accidents happen every single year with people falling off their roofs. After so many days of storms and ice, things might be slipperier than you bargained for. Having a spotter on the ground will ensure that your ladder stays securely in place while you’re up on the roof.

Don’t climb up on the roof without a harness

If your Christmas light scheme involves actually climbing up onto the roof, be sure you have the proper equipment (like a harness) to do so.

Call in a professional

Worried about safely installing or removing your Christmas lights this season? Don’t risk it— just call in a professional. At Dominion Roofing, we provide a variety of professional roofing services, including Christmas light installations and removal. You can stay inside where it’s warm and enjoy those Christmas leftovers. We’ll take care of the rest.