Check our safety guide below to guarantee your tot’s safety.
The majority of the brain development that takes place in children happens from 1 year of age up until the age of 5. During these years, children are especially curious about new things. This means they are at the very pinnacle of their exploring skills!
With this in mind, you’ll recognize your toddler wants to freely roam around your home, learning new things while exploring independently.
While you should always encourage exploration in your child instead of just stopping them due to worries about electricity-related hazards, you should always ensure you’ve kept their safety firmly in mind.
You can ensure safety by baby proofing cords using our comprehensive guidance and instructions here!
Baby Proofing Cords: Its Importance
The NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) and the US CPSC – Consumer Products Safety Commission), has released statistics which indicate that around 89% of all shock and electrical burn incidents occur in children aged 6 or under.
Furthermore, each year about 2400 children end up with severe burns and shocks simply by putting items into electrical receptacle slots. There are about 6 – 12 fatalities every year due to this according to recent estimates.
Even if you never realized it before, there are wires in virtually every part of the home. They’re used for a wide variety of electricity appliances from gadgets in daily use like phone chargers and the TV to appliances in the kitchen such as the microwave and toaster.
Without appropriate childproofing, here are just a handful of untoward incidents which may happen:
- Choking due to a wire being accidentally wrapped around a child’s neck
- The chance of a severe injury due to tripping over a wire
- Electric shock hazards if a toddler pulls the wire out
- Chewing or eating wires
- Chance of burns
It couldn’t be clearer, then, that baby proofing wires is very important.
There are three main things to consider while baby proofing electrical cords:
- Power Strip
How to Baby Proof Cords: Your Step-by-Step Guide
When childproofing you need a comprehensive knowledge of the wires used within your home.
Here are some easy suggestions to child proof plugs and cables:
1. Check Your Home for Exposed Wires and Outlets
“Out of sight, out of mind”. This proverb holds for kids also, and this is the most convenient and simplest approach in baby proofing.
Just because you haven’t noticed wires doesn’t mean they’re not there. Take the time to evaluate your house for exposed outlets. Remember, if your toddler roams about freely they could find them independently and end up getting a shock or experiencing an untoward incident.
Rearranging the furniture is a quick and easy way to hide an outlet from your toddler.
The furniture items acts as a kind of blockade between your toddler and the power outlet.
Check these tips for baby proofing electrical cords:
- Don’t move the furniture while your toddler is present as intelligent children remember and may try poking around a moved item.
- Make sure furniture is properly anchored down so it won’t fall on your toddler.
- Keep enough space between outlets and furniture.
Although this is an easy option, it isn’t always feasible since repositioning your furniture isn’t always possible! In that case, the products we mention next will be helpful.
2. Invest in Shorteners and Covers
If you’ve got fixed furniture which can’t act as a blockade between your child and wires, opt for shorteners or covers.
Usually, the cord cover will come with an outlet so the cord and plug can be hidden. You can mount wires onto your walls with the cover so they won’t be exposed and your child won’t pull them.
If wires are very long, a shortener will help. This allows the storage of the excess wire in a case so your toddler can’t pull the cords.
3. Wrap and Encase the Power Cords Together
In some parts of your home there could be several wires lying about. Cord sleeves can help in these cases.
Essentially, a cord sleeve will wrap all of the wires in a single bundle to hide them so your toddler won’t play with them.
Some cases where this method can be used include in the space behind the TV, with gaming consoles and where several kitchen appliances are plugged in.
Plastic tape can also be used for baby proofing electrical cords.
4. Use Duct Cord Covers
Duct cord covers can hide cables running over your floor so a smoother surface can be created that prevents child from falling over them.
Also, duct cords prevent your toddler from pulling the encapsulated cables.
Choose duct covers which have adhesive so they can be stuck onto your wall to make wires even safer.
5. Use Cord Protectors
A Cord protector is an insulated material that protects cables. When a toddler tries accidentally to chew a wire, the protector keeps the power cord from being damaged.
How To Baby Proof Outlets
Baby proofing wires is the first step to electrical safety in your home. However, it isn’t enough to just baby proof cords. You must also ensure outlets are child proofed too.
Firstly, you need to become aware of all the outlets in use inside your home so you can go about childproofing them.
Typically in the USA there are two kinds of outlet – B and A. One is a 2 tonged outlet and the other is 3 tonged.
Let’s look more closely at B type outlets which are the most common type.
1. GFCI – Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter
These act as protective devices in cases of inconsistency between need for current and the flow itself.
GFCI’s prevent serious injuries and accidents since the wire cannot overheat. Installing this type of outlet offers a host of advantages.
It’s possible to determine if your outlet is a GFCI type simply checking the outlet for a “test” and “reset” button.
2. AFCI – Arc Fault Circuit Interrupter
This type of outlet can protect from any Arc faults which can occur when a wire has become damaged and so won’t connect properly.
Here are some of the most common outlet covers for childproofing:
These act as a cover for an outlet with a provision so cables can be put in the boxes.
Plastic covers can be chosen to suit the design and type of outlets in your property.
Easily fitting in the outlet, these prevent toddlers from putting their fingers in the outlet so they are, essentially, baby proof plugs since it’s hard for a child to pull over these covers out of the socket.
Plastic covers are readily available and don’t cost much, but if your child has reached an age where they can pull the cover out themselves you need to take extreme care.
This represents the best option when you want to child proof an outlet since the self-closing cover slides down the moment the wire is removed from its outlet.
Baby Proofing Electrical Cords: Few Other Tips and Recommendations
After you’ve achieved cord safety for baby, there are a few other practicalities to consider when ensuring your child’s complete safety.
1. Don’t Handle Cables and Electrical Sockets While your Child Is Watching
All children are naturally inquisitive so you shouldn’t plug a wire into an outlet if your child is watching as it’s very likely they’ll try doing it themselves which is extremely dangerous.
2. Stay Vigilant
Bear in mind the common phrase better safe than sorry. Don’t keep any appliances plug in which you’re not currently using!
Essential items in everyday use such as dryers, cleaners and irons should immediately be unplugged once you’ve finished working with them.
Electrical hazards can easily be prevented simply by being careful and vigilant.
3. Adhere To A Rule Of No Toys Close to Outlets
It’s hard to achieve this when you have a toddler in the house, but ensuring no appealing items like colorful things or toys are near wires and outlets is important.
It’s especially important to ensure no toddler climbing toys are close to wires.
4. Educate Your Child About Electrical Safety
Once your child has reached an age where they can begin learning about electrical safety it’s time to explain why electricity accidents are so hazardous.
Setting rules about switching appliances on correctly then immediately turning them off after you’ve finished using them is important.
In the case of older children, using educational videos is helpful to enable them to understand the concept.
5. The Power Strip
A power strip for extension cords can represent a major risk to children since it supplies considerable power. Purchasing a suitable cover for your power strip will help to protect your child. Also, you can purchase a surge protector cover which is helpful.
While it seems intimidating to electric-proof your home for your toddler and newborn it needn’t be a challenge.
There are lots of things to consider which we’ve outlined above. You can baby proof electric wires in several ways and to make life easier, lots of products are on the market that can proof extension cords and plugs too.
Although the process seems tiresome it’s vital to do it since it’s paramount for your Child safety. Choose the most appropriate technique and baby proofing cords will work well for you!