How to Hang Christmas Lights Without Damaging Your Roof

Joyful Lights| Damage Free Roof

Hanging Christmas lights is one of the greatest traditions that we share with everyone to see.  It may be just for your family, or it might be the most exiting contest you unwillingly entered in with your neighbors. Either way, if you don’t do it right, the excitement and competitive spirit will not pay for your medical bills or roof damage.

To avoid ruining your holidays with accidents or roof damage expenses, know and use the right stuff.

Start with the right lights.

No mater which style you like, only install those rated for outdoor use. They are tested for safety by Intertek (ETL), Underwriters Laboratories (UL) or the Canadian Standards Association (CSA). Make sure they are in good working condition.

Using the right tools is essential


Whether it be a flat roof or shingle roof, water intrusion points will be created by staples.

Anything that penetrates your roof creates a weak point.  Every staple can cause cracks that let moisture in. These in turn, create silent leaks that can cause wood rot.  Those tiny moister entry points can cause you big bucks down the road.

If you suspect that your roof already has some kind of wood rot, have it inspected before even considering hanging any decorations. We urge you to avoid walking on a roof, especially if it’s compromised. 


It’s not as innocent as you think. The staples can even strip the wires. FIRE and ELECTROCUTION HAZARDS are not on anybody’s Christmas list.

There are plenty roof friendly options to hang your holiday lights.

Instead of staples, use roof friendly options:

Plastic Light Clips  the most cost effective, stress-free and secure option for your roof. There is a plastic clip out there for every roof.  Here is a link to a great article that provides a detailed Christmas Light Clips Guide .

Zipties work best for railings and are easy to remove.

3M Command Clips could also be a good option, but they are not for every surface or every region. According to reviews, these might not hold up well to insistent rain.  

Bearing in mind the rainy Pacific Northwest winters we enjoy every year, plastic clips are your best option.
Share the joy, ask someone for help.

Important Stuff to Know Before Hanging Christmas lights

Falls make for a good holiday movie, but safety is no joke!

According to the World Health Organization, the United States leads world in ladder deaths. Each year, there are more than 164,000 emergency room-treated injuries and 300 deaths caused by falls from ladders.

Avoid falls by using the right ladder to avoid overreaching, and anchor it properly.

Important Safety Warnings:

– Frozen water is still water. Never attempt to hang Christmas lights during wet weather conditions. This includes when there is snow or ice on the roof or the ground.

– Follow all building codes and safety codes.

– It is advisable that only a professional should stand or walk on a roof and only sparingly to avoid the risk of damage.

– Always have someone with you during the entire installation process. You might need an elf to call 911 if you accidentally injure yourself.

-Certain medical conditions may make hanging lights and working at heights a hazardous activity for you. Please exercise all caution and consult with your physician first if advisable.

When the Joyful lights need to be taken down

Even if it’s already February, take your time to do it right.  Don’t waste all of your effort in installing them correctly, by pulling them off.  Damage can also be caused during removal.

We at Flat Roof Pros, wish you Warm and Happy Holidays!

If during this season you have a roofing emergency, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’re here for you!

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