You’ve heard the adage, “home safe home”. And indeed, home is what comes to mind first when you think of safety. But even your home can’t be safe enough for your toddler. One of the dangers is your child opening the door of his/her room and heading to unsafe areas such as the stairs or the outdoors. You wouldn’t be able to monitor him/her all the time.
That’s why door safety latches have come into the picture. These prevent your toddler from opening the door, and if your child is the curious kind, as most kids are, you should get these safety solutions in place. Here are 8 important things to consider when installing door safety latches in kids’ bedroom.
- Can I Just Go Ahead and Buy a Door Safety Solution?
There are many products available such as the lever handle lock, door knob lock, pinch guard, etc. But not all solutions are suitable for all homes or kids. You need to analyze what the needs of your home are. How active is your child and how great is the risk of danger should your toddler open his/her bedroom door?
- Where to Install the Door Safety Latches?
Though the headline for this article talks about door safety options for kids’ bedroom, you need to analyze where the danger lies more. You need to secure the doors to the more dangerous areas of your house, such as the storeroom, and you absolutely need to secure the doors that open to the outdoors. So if your kid’s bedroom door doesn’t open out into any dangerous area, you don’t need to secure it unnecessarily. Instead, secure the doors that matter.
- Is a DIY solution enough or do you need to buy a product from the market?
Remember, you may not need the lock guard or safety latch in your door forever. Your kid could soon outgrow the toddler stage and then these latches or guards could become a major inconvenience. If your toddler is too inquisitive and gets really hard for you to manage, you need a good product since safety is top priority. If not, you can just conjure up some DIY solution.
- What DIY solutions are out there?
If your door has a doorknob, you can get a cardboard knob guard done with scissors and some tape.
Get a strip of cardboard exceeding the width of your doorknob and long enough to be able to wrap around it as shown here.
Then make cuts on the sides with scissors to ensure the cardboard folds like a roll.
Then roll the strip.
Then roll it around the door knob and tape the ends.
When your kid tries to open the doorknob, the cardboard guard just keeps rotating without the doorknob turning.
A towel and a masking tape can help you devise a solution to keep the door from slamming shut and crushing your little one’s fingers. All you need to do is place a towel at the top of the door, close to where you have the hinges. As long as the towel is there, the door will almost close without slamming shut. There will be a gap remaining. Make sure the towel doesn’t hang too low for your child to grab it. Use the masking tape to secure the towel’s ends to the door, which will prevent it from falling off.
- Are door knob locks effective?
If your door has door knobs and not a lever handle, and you don’t prefer the earlier suggested DIY solution, you need to go for door knob locks. They can be very effective, but you can’t quite discount the fact that as toddlers keep growing they get more inquisitive and intelligent by the day and could perhaps figure out a way to get through these guards, though that’s rare chance.
The door knob lock mentioned in Parent Guide looks like this:
This particular version is difficult for your toddler to figure out since it needs to be pinched to open. It is easily installable and fits on standard knobs.
- My toddler’s door doesn’t have a knob, but a lever. What then?
Even levers have locks available. The lever handle locks fit over the handle like the knob lock above.
This too needs to be pinched to open and is easily installable.
- Are there kid safety solutions apart from knob and handle locks?
Yes, there are other smart solutions such as the pinch guard. This is the solution you need if you’re more worried about your child jamming his/her finger in a slamming door. Kids are active, and the more active they are, the greater is their tendency to bump into something or get their fingers in dangerous places.
The pinch guard is shaped like a “c” and can be fixed to any hinged door. It is easily attachable, doesn’t require any structural modifications to your door and is very effective. Make sure you attach it reasonably higher.
- Do I need to secure anything else apart from doors?
Cabinet doors should also be secured if they contain potentially dangerous items inside. You have child safety latches for cabinets that can be easily installed.
These can successfully prevent your kids from opening them and accessing potentially dangerous stuff.
Now you have just the information you need to keep your home secure for your precious little ones. Analyze your need and choose the appropriate solution.