How To Childproof Locks And Doors In Your Home

By: River City Keys Locksmith Edmonton

Every parent or guardian knows that a child’s curiosity knows no bounds.

As their little feet patter around the home, every corner, cabinet, and door becomes an intriguing mystery awaiting discovery.

While this sense of wonder is heartwarming, it also presents many potential hazards.

Doors and locks, often overlooked, can pose significant risks if not adequately childproofed.

This article delves deep into the essential steps to ensure your home remains a safe haven for your young ones.

Let’s get right into it.

The Risks Uncovered

Children, particularly toddlers, often view the world differently from adults. A closed door isn’t just a barrier; it’s an invitation to explore.

This perspective can lead to several issues:

Accidental lock-ins or lock-outs: A child might inadvertently lock themselves in a room or, worse, outside the house.

Injuries from door slams: Little fingers can get caught, leading to painful injuries.

Access to unsafe areas: Basements, garages, or utility rooms might house hazards like tools, chemicals, or staircases.

Understanding these risks is the first step in preemptive action.

Understanding Different Types Of Locks And Doors

Before we delve into childproofing methods, it’s essential to recognize the types of doors and locks in your home:

Traditional Locks and Doorknobs: These are common in most interiors and can be turned or twisted open.

Sliding Doors: Often lead to patios or backyards and slide horizontally.

Bi-fold and Closet Doors: These fold in the middle and are often used for closets or pantries.

Heavy-duty Exterior Doors: Sturdy doors that are the primary entrances or exits.

Steps to Childproof Traditional Doorknobs And Locks

With a grasp on door types, you can now take specific childproofing actions:

Doorknob Covers: These prevent the knob from turning unless it’s gripped in a specific way — challenging for small hands.

Top Locks or Slide Locks: Positioned high on the door, they add an extra security layer.

Keyless Door Locks: For primary entries, these ensure only adults can access using codes or biometrics.

Securing Sliding Doors

These doors can be tricky but not insurmountable:

Bar Locks and Rod Inserts: Placed in the track, they prevent the door from sliding open.

Window Film: Strengthen glass against shattering – an added security benefit.

Door Alarms: These sound off if the door is opened unexpectedly.

Safeguarding Bi-fold and Closet Doors

Small storage spaces are magnets for curious children:

Bi-fold Door Locks: These simple devices latch onto the doors, preventing them from being opened.

Secure Brackets: Ensure the door tracks are well-fastened, reducing the risk of doors coming off their tracks.

Safe Storage: It’s a good practice not to store hazardous materials or tools in easily accessible closets.

Childproofing Heavy-Duty Exterior Doors

The main entrances require additional attention:

Elevated Deadbolts: Positioning these higher up on the door keeps them out of reach of children.

Double-sided Locks: Essential for doors with glass panels as they prevent a child from breaking the glass and turning the lock.

Reinforced Frames: Stronger frames and doors deter forced entries, offering peace of mind.

General Door Safety Tips

Beyond specific door types, some general practices can enhance safety:

Finger-Pinch Guards: Attach these to doors to prevent them from slamming shut fully.

Door Stops: These devices keep doors open, preventing unexpected closures.

Safety Education: Teach children about door safety. Make them understand certain areas are off-limits without adult supervision.

Additional Measures For Optimal Safety

To create a holistic safety environment:

Baby Gates: Position these at staircases or room entrances to restrict access.

Door Chimes or Alarms: Instantly be notified when a door opens, especially useful for exterior doors.

Routine Inspections: Periodically check all door locks, knobs, and mechanisms to ensure they’re in good working order.

Interesting Facts About Childproofing

Historical Beginnings: The concept of childproofing began in the 1950s. Before that, the onus was mainly on children to avoid dangerous areas or objects. It was during this decade that the importance of creating safe environments specifically tailored for children started gaining traction.

Inspired by Medicine: One of the earliest childproofing devices was the child-resistant cap used for medicine bottles, introduced in the 1960s. This invention paved the way for similar mechanisms in locks and doors.

Magnetic Magic: Some modern childproof cabinet locks use magnets. Parents keep the magnetic “key” out of children’s reach, which, when placed near the locked cabinet, releases the lock mechanism.

Multi-Purpose Nature: Childproof door locks, especially for cabinets, often double up as earthquake or accidental shake protection. They ensure that doors don’t swing open easily, safeguarding against potential breakages or spills.

Beyond Traditional Use: Childproofing techniques have found applications beyond home safety. Museums and art galleries sometimes employ childproof methods to keep exhibits secure from not just children, but any inadvertent tampering.

Sliding Door Innovation: For sliding doors, especially those leading to patios or balconies, there are childproofing locks that allow the door to be opened slightly for ventilation but not wide enough for a child to get through.

A Lucrative Market: The global childproofing products market, including locks and doors, is steadily growing. It’s estimated to be worth several billion dollars, with North America leading in terms of market share.

DIY Hacks: Before commercial childproofing products became widely available, parents got creative. Some early DIY methods included using rubber bands or hair ties to keep cabinet doors closed.

Laws and Regulations: In the U.S., the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) sets guidelines for childproofing products. These regulations ensure that products meet specific safety criteria to be effective against the clever tactics of toddlers and young children.

Rise of Digital: With the advent of smart homes, digital childproofing solutions are emerging. There are now smart locks and alarms that can send notifications to parents’ phones if a door or cabinet is accessed, integrating child safety seamlessly into the modern home ecosystem.


Childproofing is an ongoing process that evolves with your child’s growth and curiosity levels. As they grow and learn, your approach might need tweaks.

However, the balance between safety and granting children the freedom to explore is crucial. After all, a home is a place of warmth, love, and security.

By taking these proactive steps, you can ensure it remains just that.

If you have any questions about our article, “How To Childproof Locks And Doors In Your Home” or need a locksmith in Edmonton connect with us on LiveChat, social media or at (780) 265-0062.