Because you’re dealing with the largest and bulkiest mechanical items in most homes, practicing proper garage door safety is vital. This is particularly true for homes with younger children, who may view the garage as a toy rather than an item to take great care around.
At Overhead Door Company, we’re here to help. We’re always available for basic garage door repair services, but we also regularly go the extra mile to help clients with our expertise in various safety area. One common such area is childproofing – let’s look at some questions you should ask yourself first, some childproofing steps, and how to deal with children and automatic garage doors.
Questions to Ask
There are a number of possible risks to children inside a given garage, from the door itself to cars, floor materials and various tools or supplies. Before you make any big changes to your garage space, ask yourself some or all of the following questions about its current setup:
- What kind of clutter is present in the garage? Is it dangerous to children?
- How easily can my child access the garage from various entryways (the garage door itself, but also side and interior access doors)?
- Can my child reach chemicals or tools kept in the garage that are unsafe for them?
- Can my child reach other risks like garbage, gardening materials or even pet foods?
- Are vehicles locked when not in use?
- How well is the garage door maintained?
Steps to Take
Using the questions listed above, you can lay out a childproofing plan for your entire garage. This may be as simple as decluttering the space and making it easier to navigate, or it might involve a full overhaul of a few major storage areas. A few common strategies that tend to apply for most homeowners:
- Place all chemicals, tools or dangerous items completely out of reach of children. Give them credit for their creativity – just because something is a few inches higher than their standing reach doesn’t mean they can’t get it, and children will absolutely use stools or other devices to get where they want to go. Put these items as high as possible, or behind a locked door of some kind.
- Remove clutter from tools and supplies, especially any where kids can trip.
- Consider a Dutch door addition to your garage exit. This allows you to close half of the door while leaving the top half open, stopping kids from going in and out but allowing you to transfer groceries or other items easily.
It’s important to remind children regularly that automatic garage doors and their openers are not toys. Kids playing around with garage door remotes can very easily hurt themselves or become stuck in the door. If you can’t convince them to take this kind of care on their own, you may have to hide or lock away your garage remote.
For more on childproofing your garage, or to learn about any of our garage doors, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.