I am a mother of two toddlers so I know exactly how important it is to have child safety locks on your kitchen cabinets, bathroom cabinets, and any other cabinet in the house that you want to keep your inquisitive youngster out of. Anyone with a toddler will need to have childproof locks for the basic safety of their toddler. We cannot keep our children safe without these devices because even if you put poisons and sharp objects up high in cabinets we will eventually find that our ingenious toddler has built a ladder of toys, chairs, or other object to climb and get into the cabinet in question. My daughter once climbed from her toys, to the kitchen counter, and onto the top of the refrigerator in less then two minutes. It was an amazing feat but this shows exactly the lengths that a toddler will go to in order to explore a ‘forbidden’ region of the house because they are naturally curious.
Here are ten tips on installing childproof locks in your kitchen cabinets.
1) Count all of the cabinets and drawers that you will need to purchase locks for. Take pictures of the cabinets if you need to remember how they look because some locks work on certain cabinets and others will only work on other cabinets so you will need to be aware of how your cabinets close.
2) In my experience BabiesRUs is the place to go in order to buy childproof locks. Yes, you can purchase them at Wal Mart but these stores have far less selection. A store like BabiesRUs or a large ToysRUs is truly best to purchase childproof locks. I have even looked at home improvement stores like Home Depot and Lowes and I have been sadly disappointed.
3) In my opinion the best childproof locks are the magnetic Tot Loks. These are expensive but they work wonderfully. The plastic child proof locks tend to break easily and children who are extremely bright figure them out quickly. Tot Loks secure a cabinet with ease and your child will not be able to get into it. They are also easy to install and they are a lock that is not noticeable on the outside of the cabinet.
4) Tot Loks work by installing the magnets to the kitchen cabinets. Then if you want to unlock the cabinets you touch a ‘key’ to the cabinets and they unlock. I suppose that the trick is to not loose the key! You can also disable the locking mechanism. These wonderful locks do require screws so you will be placing permanent holes into your cabinet but once your child grows up and your remove the locks you can use a bit of wood putty to cover up the marks.
5) I have found Tot Loks online at Amazon, at BabiesRUs, at ToysRUs, and I have been told they are sometimes at some Wal Marts but I have never seen them at any of the six Wal Marts I have shopped at.
6) If you decide to use the Tot Loks then be sure to install them in the exact same location on each cabinet so you do not have to run the magnetic key up and down the cabinet trying to find the locks.
7) You can also buy cheap plastic child locks to install that are screwed into your cabinet or drawers but these break easily. I have used the plastic adhesive child locks that attach to the outside of a cabinet with adhesive strips and then pop the cabinet shut with a simple clasp. These work well when the child is small but once they are three years old they simply pop them off the cabinets with ease.
8) Please keep the magnet key safe and out of your child’s reach if you decide to use Tot Loks. If you loose it then you won’t be able to get into your cabinet. I also don’t like the fact that the keys are small and could actually be swallowed by a child so keep them up where it is safe and the child can absolutely not get to it.
9) These locks are not hard to install. I have installed them by myself since my husband was too busy at the time. It was simple and not too time consuming. But if you feel that you cannot do it on your own then you can always have a professional cabinet installer come to your house to do the task.
10) The only tool that you need is a Phillips head screwdriver or a drill to install virtually all child locks on the market today.
Child proof safety locks are imperative in any home with a toddler.