Babyproofing Your Home: 18 Tips

babyproofing your home tipsBabyproofing your home is a rite of passage for new parents, the beginning of a transformation that will ultimately bring an end to your stylish, grown-up decor. Unless you live in a studio apartment, this isn’t a one-hour, single-day job either. It’s a constant process similar to keeping velociraptors as pets: your baby keeps finding new areas to exploit, and you locking them down.

Drawer and Cabinet Latches

Most new parents tackle this first, because drawers and cabinets are both accessible to babies and filled with all kinds of things they’re not supposed to have. Get them locked down with latches and magnetic locks.

babyprooing cabinet latches babyproofing magnetic latches babyproofing side-by-side latches
Long Cabinet Latches
Be sure to get “long reach” cabinet latches like these; they work on drawers, too.
Magnetic Cabinet Latches
Magnetic cabinet latches are essentially tamper-proof; you use a “key” to open locked cabinets
Side-by-side Latches
When you have double-door cabinets, these side-by-side latches work very well.

Door Locks and Baby Gates

Once your baby figures out how to move, he or she will immediately head for the stairs, the bathroom, and other hazardous, hard-to-babyproof areas. Contain their movements with door locks and baby gates.

baby proofing kit Lever handle door lock Baby proof gate
46-piece Babyproofing Kit
Your basic get-started-babyproofing kit with latches, door knob covers, and electrical outlet covers.
Lever Handle Door Lock
Lever-style doors are the easiest for a toddler to master, and they need a special kind of door knob lock.
Walk-through Baby Gate
Forget those cheap plastic gates… for staircases and key doorways, invest in a metal walk-through baby gate like the Regalo.

Babyproofing the Kitchen Stove

The kitchen is a critical area for babyproofing because it’s filled with sharp or dirty or boiling-hot things that a baby shouldn’t touch. Of course, it’s also where you tend to be, and that draws the baby in like nothing else. Now that you have the cabinets and drawers latched, it’s time to tackle the next big hazard: the stove.

Baby stove guard Clear stove knob covers Black stove knob covers
Prince Lionheart Stove Guard
Prevents your toddler from reaching up to be burned on a hot cooktop or pull down pots/utensils from the stove.
Clear Stove Knob Covers
Especially important if you have a stove with knobs on the side rather than the top. Toddlers will turn them!
Black Stove Knob Covers
Parents with modern-style kitchens might prefer these black stove knob covers instead.

Preventing Baby Injuries

Babies are generally unaware of their own mortality, and they also tend to be a little bit clumsy. We ended up at the emergency room after our oldest son fell and hit his forehead on the corner of our kitchen wall. As soon as your baby is mobile, take these steps to minimize the chance of injuries.

Baby edge corner cushion kit Baby fireplace guard Furniture and appliance bracket
Edge and Corner Kit
Tables, bookshelves, and other furniture with sharp edges below 3 feet tall should be padded at the baby’s crawling stage.
Baby Fireplace Guard
A must-have for homes with hearths or fireplaces. These edge and corner pads prevent baby injuries from those hard, sharp edges.
Furniture/Appliance Bracket
Make sure heavy furniture and appliances won’t tip over. Especially critical when your baby starts pulling up on things.

Babyproofing Electronics and Appliances

Some of the most expensive and hazardous things in your home are probably plugged in. Babies don’t understand electricity or the cost of an LED TV, so it’s best to take precautions.

Baby proof power strip Flat Screen TV Brace Appliance Latches
Power Strip Safety Cover
Power strips are a necessity in our electronic world. Keep little fingers away from plugs and cords with this power strip cover.
Flat Screen TV Brace
This brace attaches secures your flatscreen TV to a wall or entertainment center, preventing any tip-overs by little hands.
Appliance Securing Latches
Secure your refrigerator, dishwasher, entertainment center, or other open-and-close items with latches like these.

Keeping Baby Safe Outside the Home

At some point you’ll have to let your baby outside the sheltered security of your home. Stores, restaurants, and even your front yard have hazards to watch out for. Here are some good safety tips.

Baby high chair cart cover Kid safe driveway guard Kids playing sign
High Chair / Shopping Cart Cover
People are always asking where we got these… they protect your child from germs and hard edges on shopping carts or high chairs.
Kidsafe Driveway Guard
All right, so it’s more for toddlers and their ride-on toys, but I think this “driveway gate” is an excellent idea.
Children at Play Sign
This bright orange sign will advise drivers to slow down and pay attention. Also provides some toy storage inside it!