Neon Sign Safety
Neon signs are functional, nostalgic and, in many cases, memorable, but they can also lead to accidents. Okay, so your not worried about the sign jumping off the wall (even if it is a stock Freddy Krueger clock) and doing damage. They seem innocuous, they don’t offer any obvious hazards, but like anything else they can be mishandled.
So you know that they are made from little glass tubes that contain an inert gas, so, yeah, the glass can break and cut you. Big deal. You just broke a cup in the sink last week and sliced your finger. Apply pressure and put on a band aid. The problem is that there are many things in the house that can cause injuries that people don’t think about. Just follow these tips and enjoy that vintage thumbs-up keep on trucking sign your dad got for a gag gift thirty five years ago.
How High is the Ceiling?
The height at which you put the clock or sign is an issue because if it falls you could have unseen little glass shards all over the house. Neon glass is not special, but, like all other forms, when broken it tends to splinter. Suspending a neon structure improperly from a vaulted ceiling could cause undo hazard.
Daddy, Will the Little Shards of Glass Cut Me?
Children are another concern. Most of the time a neon sign or other memorabilia is carefully tucked away from little fingers, as it should be. Unfortunately, this is not always possible. Just realize that there is the danger of breakage as a neon structure is probably more fragile than a lot of signs, clocks and other pretty things that they may come in contact with.
Okay, Does This Seem Warm to Anyone Else?
When purchasing a neon piece, make sure that it properly wired and has a UL2161 power supply installed. The UL 2161 standard was introduced by Underwriters Laboratories (UL®) in 1996 to protect the public from any shock or fire hazard. The standard requires all new neon power supplies to incorporate secondary ground fault and over voltage protection. If you purchase a used neon sign made before 1996, which still has a non-conforming power supply, make sure that it is not growing hotter. This would indicate a problem.