Babyproofing Drawers and Furniture

Updated on February 22, 2008
J.S. asks from Santa Fe, NM
10 answers

We're having some babyproofing challenges that I'm hoping to get some product recomendations for. We can't seem to find any kind of lock for shallow drawers. The drawers in our kitchen are not very deep and we can't get a screw driver staright enough in them to install a lock like we did on the cabinets. We bought the adhesive kind of latch but they are too big (take up too much room) inside the drawer and the drawer is not deep enough to operate them fully. We have very limited space in our house so we can't afford to not use all the space we have, otherwise we'd just empty the drawers out. I tried taping them shut with masking tape (so it wouldn't damage the finish) but he figured out within minutes how to peel it off. Also, we can't figure out what to do with the furniture drawers and doors. I don't want to drill into them but, again, the adhesive locks are too big. We just bought a new hutch for our dining room and my son has already broken a cabinet door once he figured out how to open it! We took all the hardware off all the furniture but that hasn't slowed him down much. Any ideas would be so greatly appreciated. Thank you!!

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K.B.

answers from Phoenix on

My husband put Tot Lok's on all the drawers and cabinets. I love love love them. They are magnetic and work better than the plastic hook locks.

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C.D.

answers from Phoenix on

As much as we want them to - latches won't stop kids from getting into where they want to. However, Home Depot sells "stubby" screw drivers that are about 1 1/2" tall. That should work for your kitchen drawers. As far as your hutch goes - look for something like this http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Produc... . They may even have a finger latch in the store that would work well too.

Good luck! My son started climbing out of his crib at 18 months - even with it all the way down!!

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E.C.

answers from Santa Fe on

Have you tried putting up baby gates? I never found any locks or latches that kept my son out of anything. I ended up just closing doors to the areas I didn't want him in and I put up a baby gate to keep him out of the kitchen and out of the sunroom.
Also, try a local hardware store. They may have a wider selection of baby-proofing items.

T.C.

answers from Albuquerque on

Even though it can be a pain, the word, "no" has been our best solution at home. There are just some places if my son gets into (and he's smart enough to get through some locks), he could poison himself. For a while, I felt like I was saying, "no" constantly from sun-up to sundown, but he eventually got the message.
And it's not seven "no's" at once. As lots of Moms here have pointed out, it's one good, "NO." then a consequence if he tries again.
Not that I still don't have to watch him constantly, because he's still growing and curious. But I don't have locks on anything. Good luck!

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J.W.

answers from Phoenix on

We had issues with our new house and ironically we have friends in the childproofing business so we made the call and they came and did everything, worth EVERY penny. If interested, call and inquire, tell them J. and Brian sent you as it might make a difference for price since they are family friends. ###-###-#### or email [email protected]____.com
Hope this helps,
J.

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A.T.

answers from Phoenix on

I had to teach my kids not to open the drawers....usually a firm "NO" took care of it. Sometimes the "no" occurred w/ me taking their hand off. Of course if there is something dangerous you should always have a lock on the drawers and cabinets. I hope you find something that works for you. Good luck.

Alison (SAHM of a 13, two 11 yr olds, a 7, and a 4 1/2 year old)

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J.L.

answers from Salt Lake City on

If you have a row of drawers above each other, and the right kind of handles on your drawers, you can just slide a yardstick or broomstick (unscrewed from the broom top, or just purchase the stick) down the handles to keep any single drawer from being opened. Then if you have a lock even on one of the drawers, none can be opened. It may even be worth replacing the handles (temporarily) with a type you could do this with. If you have a drawer above a cupboard, this won't work. I use Gerber drawer locks. They are my favorite because you only need to put the lock on the drawer part, and not inside the drawer opening. These are available at baby-wise.com, or just google Gerber safety latches. Good luck!

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J.B.

answers from Phoenix on

We have five kids in the house right now, 16, 14, 11, 6 & 13 months. I never locked anything. Now I have a few latches on a couple of drawers and the few cabinets with cleaning supplies. That is ONLY because it's required by the Health Dept. for in-home childcare. Otherwise I wouldn't have done even that. We close the bathroom and a couple of bedrooms doors cause baby makes a mess, but the kitchen cabinets....she loves to pull out all the tupperwares and sports bottles, and so what? Move stuff around so the dangerous/costly stuff is on the top and the stuff on the bottom is okay and fun.

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H.C.

answers from Phoenix on

well you should try toys are us somtimes they have great stuff like locks and stuff but just keep looking at stores and good luck

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J.C.

answers from Phoenix on

You certainly can't babyproof everything. Your son needs to learn boundaaries and you need to set them. We have never had locks on any of our drawers or cabinets and we have never had a problem. We have gates to block off our kitchen, but my children have been able to climb them since 18 months, so that didn't even help much. We actually did not use the word "no" We would say things like, "That is hot, we don't touch or we walk in the house, or our feet belong on the floor or our hands are for loving." When my son touched his first electrical plug we gave him a firm warning and a stern look, he was 10 months old. HE never touched it again. We do have electrical outlet covers because that is just something that is way too dangerous. Cleaners are kept up high and medicines kept only in the master bath. If we, as parents, completely babyproof our house, what happens when they go to grandma's and hers isn't and they think that it is okay to touch her kitchen cabinets? They need to learn early that certain areas are off limits, everywhere! Provide plenty of exploratory activities like bubbles, water play, sand play with buckets, spoons, strainers, etc. He needs to obviously explore and you need to encourage it in a positive way. I am not sure if this is the response you were looking for, but I hope it helps somewhat.

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