As Christmas approaches and we start decking the halls of our homes, attention turns to the Christmas tree.
Traditionally, December 8th is the most popular day to put the Christmas tree up, and picking the perfect tree is the fun part.
However, transporting the tree home can be tricky and sometimes dangerous, if not done properly.
Carzone, Ireland’s ultimate motoring marketplace, has created some useful tips on how to get the tree home safely for Christmas.
1. Measure Every Space Involved
Before finding the perfect Christmas tree, measure the height of the room where the tree will be put up, and measure the roof length of your car. This will ensure the tree fits both the room and the roof of your car.
2. Wrap It Up
No, not with glittery paper and all tied up with a bow. Any good Christmas tree supplier will offer a tree wrapping service. This will tightly bundle all the tree’s branches together into a compact, netted shape. Using a wrapping on the tree helps avoid any damage to the car or losing branches on the drive home.
3. Secure It Properly
Christmas trees are big and heavy and to ensure a safe transport of the tree to your home, it is vital to have all of the necessary ropes and ties to secure it to the top of your car. Make use of any roof rails or a roof rack on the vehicle if possible. The tree needs to be secured in place, not just lightly tied with string.
4. Think Of Aerodynamics
Make sure the wrapped tree is mounted with the trunk, base and the bulkier foliage towards the front of the vehicle, with the tapering top of the tree to the rear. This makes the tree more aerodynamic for transportation. Ensure it doesn’t drape down over any windows of the vehicle, and also make sure it is not sticking out too far behind the car if you’ve got it on the roof.
5. Drive Slowly
This may seem obvious, but there are no prizes for setting any personal-best records for the drive home. Take it slowly, drive smoothly and don’t worry about other drivers; they will be able to see the big tree on the top of your vehicle. Remember to factor in that the tree will increase the vehicle’s weight, so you may need to start slowing down earlier for junctions than you normally would.
6. Protect Your Vehicle
It might be worth taking a tarpaulin or old heavy blanket with you, in order to stop the tree from scratching your paintwork. Drape it over the car and/or over the tree itself, if possible. The same overriding rule applies here: make sure any such blankets, tarps or covers that you are affixing to the tree on top of the car will stay there when you’re travelling – you don’t want the cover to whip off in the wind and flap over the windscreen of the vehicle behind you, because that will lead to a big problem that you will be entirely responsible for.