Did you know that balconies are one of the most dangerous places for curious toddlers and adventurous children in any household? Whether you live in a double-storey house or a high-rise apartment, you simply cannot ignore balcony safety for kids when it comes to childproofing your home. With the concept of vertical living becoming more popular and a number of luxury apartment projects being constructed in every major city, it is now more important than ever to discuss ways to make your balcony safe for children.
Kids, by nature, can be quite inquisitive. While most developers are now paying special attention to make balconies and staircases less dangerous for kids, the main responsibility to keep a child safe ultimately falls on the parents’ shoulder.
Since we have already covered ways to make stairs safer for kids, here are some easy-to-follow yet efficient balcony safety tips that will keep your children from the harm’s way.
Tips on Balcony Safety for Kids
So, how do you childproof a balcony? Let’s find out:
- Replace your balcony railing
- Install balcony safety mesh
- Remove furniture from the balcony
- Get safety locks and latches
- Invest in a door alarm
Let’s further discuss these ways to ensure balcony safety for children.
Replace Your Balcony Railings
If your balcony railings are low or easy to climb, you must replace them with something taller and safer.
For example, some cable and wire rope railings may be budget-friendly and look aesthetically pleasing, but they usually have enough space between each post for a toddler to easily squeeze through. Similarly, some modern metal railings may look chic and stylish but they are low enough for a child to climb them.
Needless to say, either of these scenarios could be extremely dangerous.
Depending on your budget and the area bylaws, you can install tall wrought iron railing or a metal grill that makes it impossible for a kid to climb over or squeeze through. Ideally, your balcony railings should not have a gap larger than 4 inches. A concrete parapet is also a great and budget-friendly option to childproof your balcony. Meanwhile, if you are worried about tall grills hindering your view, you can instead opt for waist-high plexiglass as a transparent balcony shield to make it safe for children.
Moreover, if your balcony railing is the ideal height and doesn’t have any huge gaps, you still need to make sure it’s installed perfectly and won’t give away any time soon.
This is one of the most important tips on balcony safety for kids.
Meanwhile, here are some more ideas for balcony railings that will increase the visual appeal of your home while making the area safe for your kids.
Install Balcony Safety Mesh
This is one of the most affordable ways to ensure balcony safety for children.
Since replacing your balcony railing can be rather expensive, you can try securing it with a wire or plastic mesh instead. Although installing a child safety netting for the balcony is not a permanent solution and isn’t completely foolproof, it will keep toddlers and young children from climbing it. In addition to that, with a safety mesh for balcony, you won’t have to worry about your kids throwing their toys through the gaps in the grill either.
Wire or plastic balcony safety netting for kids is easily available at any hardware store. You can even place an online order for a child safety net for the balcony according to your colour preference.
These children’s balcony safety nets are also very easy to install and replace.
Remove Furniture from the Balcony
Are there any chairs or tables lying around in your balcony? If your kid is old enough to push house furniture next to the balcony wall but young enough not to realize the safety hazards of doing so, you need to be extra vigilant at all times.
One of the easiest ways to make your balcony safe for children is to remove any outdoor furniture you might have placed in the open area. Even if you enjoy having your evening tea on the balcony, make sure to bring all the furniture items inside once you’re done using them.
Moreover, since children can be very creative, you should also make sure there aren’t any boxes, plant pots, or toys that your kid can use as a stepping stool to climb over the balcony railing. If the railing has a ladder-like space for emergency purposes, make sure you make it inaccessible for kids by installing a transparent balcony shield. However, you must not block it off completely as you might end up needing it in case of an unfortunate incident.
Also, invest in heavy pieces of furniture to ensure balcony safety for kids. The heavier the furniture, the more difficult it would be to cannot drag it all the way to the balcony and climb it in an attempt to look outside.
Get Safety Locks and Latches
This is yet another tried and tested balcony protection tip for keeping unsupervised children away from the area.
Regardless of all the precautions may you take, there is still a fair chance your toddler might make his or her way to the balcony while you’re busy with work. Therefore, it is recommended to install two different locks on your balcony door as a childproofing measure. If the door already has a built-in lock, you can simply buy a latch from any hardware store and install it beyond the reach of your child. Remember, kids can be very observant and may learn to unlock the door after watching you do it a couple of times.
Now, if the balcony in your home is frequently accessed by other residents of the house, you should ask them to make sure the door is properly locked and the latch is in its place once they come back inside.
This is easily one of the most efficient ways to childproof your balcony.
Invest in a Door Alarm
Last but not least, you can invest in a security alarm system for your home. It will not only keep your home safe from burglars but also help make your balcony safe for children. Of course, this is one of the relatively expensive balcony safety tips on this list. However, it is a foolproof way to keep your young ones from accessing the balcony without alerting everyone in the house.
There are various types of security alarm systems available for homes in the market, though you will require a professional to install it.
Unfortunately, a large number of toddlers end up hurting themselves or worse after accidentally falling down the balcony. Therefore, if you have young children at home, it is pertinent to follow these tips on balcony safety for kids. Not to mention, it is just as important for the parents to discipline and teach their kids the dangers of climbing up the balcony railing or trying to squeeze through the gaps in its design.
That brings an end to our guide detailing balcony safety for kids. Here are some more tips on childproofing your home that you may find useful. You can also share your thoughts and comments about the balcony protection for kids with us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
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