Child Care: A Guide On Baby Gates

Child Care: A Guide On Baby Gates

Baby gates are protective barriers that are designed to protect your baby or toddler from falling out of the crib. It also prevents them from accessing unsafe areas for them such as the kitchen, garage, or the stairway. 

Baby gates are made out of plastic, wood, or metal. Additionally, they can be expanded to fit the size of the room’s door width, making them perfect for any household. To get the best baby gate, you must take your baby’s age, and weight into consideration. 

The correct time to install a baby gate is as soon as your infant starts crawling. On average, babies begin to crawl at around 9-10 months old. So you should start investing in a baby gate once they are about 6 months old. 

Baby Gates

If you plan on buying a wooden crib for your baby, do so with caution. Vintage wooden gates that have V-shaped or diamond openings are not viewed as safe. Your infant might accidentally become trapped in one of the open spots.  

According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, the ideal baby gate should be screwed towards a handrail or walls for the best child protection. These gates have the best security because they can’t be dislodged. 

Let this guide educate you on the importance of buying a baby gate and why buying one is beneficial to their growth, happiness, and overall health. 

Why Do You Need Baby Gates?

Taking care of your newborn can be difficult for new parents. The best way to care for them is by offering them the best protection from their own curiosity. Your baby will attempt to climb out of bed once in their lives, and a baby gate is the best way to keep them. These are the most common reasons why parents buy baby gates.

Kids Get Into Everything

Toddlers who sleep in larger “big-kid” beds might be able to wake up in the evening and wander around the house. This can lead them to damaging items in the house and potentially causing harm to themselves or others.

That’s one of the main reasons why you to get a baby gate. If possible, get a baby gate that has that’s least 38 x 70 inches in dimensions. It will give you a piece of mind that your toddler or baby won’t wander and ensures that they will have a safe area to rest in.

Kids Will Go On The Stairs

Baby gates prevent your baby or toddler from getting injured from the stairs. Most parents worry that their child will fall from the top of the stairs. However, they are more likely to reach the bottom and fall. That’s why baby gates are good for preventing these issues from occurring.

Baby On Stairway

Separate Kids And Pets

Pets are a dangerous threat to your infant. They can accidentally knock it over when they run into it, causing potential harm and crib damage. For these gates, you need a baby gate that doesn’t have a threshold (mounted gates, metal gates) for them to knock over.

Kid Often Climbs

When playing around in a regular crib, your baby or toddler will attempt to climb out of the crib. Having a baby gate creates a safe space for them to have fun and play around freely. This saves you time from constantly having to look over your shoulder and constantly rescue them from reaching the doorway or unsafe objects.

Travel

When traveling with your baby, you need to be able to baby proof the area quickly. For instance, areas such as hotels, or a friends house might not be child proofed enough to save them from injuring themselves or escaping. We recommend that you get a pressure pit gate because you can set them up in under 30 minutes and have your child safe in any location.

Types Of Baby Gates

Pressure Pit

Hardware Mounted

Wide Baby Gates

Freestanding

Dimensions​​​​​​

29.5 x 38

28 x 40

38 x 70

30 x 32

Location

Bottom of the stairs

Top of the Stairs

Large rooms (Living room, bedroom, etc)

Traveling/Rooms

Materials

Plastic, Wood

Metal

Metal

Plastic

Needs Tools For Installation

No

Yes

No

No

Level Of Protection

Low/Medium

High

Medium

Medium

Baby Gates For Stairs

We recommend that you buy a hardware-mounted gate that has wall anchors. The wall anchors allow the baby gate to lock solidly and stay level with the staircase. Pressure mounted gates can accidentally be knocked over by large sized pets (100-130+ lbs) or a heavy baby.

Get a pressure fit or a wide baby gate if you’re planning to get a gate installed at the bottom of the stairs. This will give them enough space and can be moved when people need to get by, if there’s too much traffic in the house, or when your child grows out of the gate.

Baby Gates For Doorways

For doorways, you should get a heavy duty mesh baby gate. They work similar to window blinds and can be retracted when it's not in use. Also, they don’t have a frame that can fall over once pressure is applied.

Some baby gates have extensions in order to help them fit beside doorways. As a rule of thumb, a door greater than 31” will need one extension to keep it locked securely. Measure your door dimensions before shopping so that it fits the doorway dimensions in your home.

Pressure Fit Baby Gates

This is the most popular choice for baby gates because they are constantly advertised in the market. Pressure fit baby gates work by using the opposing walls and pushing against them for support.

White Baby Gate

However, they are not the best option if you are using them near the stairs. Avoid buying the accordion style gates or gates that have horizontal slats. Overall, pressure fit baby gates are good if you want a simple gate for infants up to 3 years old.

Pros

Cons

Simple Installation: They don’t take long to install, and they don’t create holes in your walls

Low Stability: Pressure fit baby gates can accidentally fall over if your child is attempting to reach for the stairs

Inexpensive: Due to their basic level of support, they are cheaper than hardware installed baby gates

Pets: A medium-sized pet (60-100lbs) can knock it over

Availability: Since they are popular and made for a widespread audience, you have a vast selection to choose from

Hardware Mounted Baby Gates

As its name suggests, hardware mounted baby gates are directly attached to the wall. This baby gate provides the most security because it has support from the room’s wall. Even if you have the most persistent and stubborn baby, hardware mounted baby gates are virtually impossible to remove.

To get the best out of them, thoroughly read the instruction manual that comes with the crib before attempting to install it. If you don’t follow the instructions correctly, and it’s your first time placing a baby wall in your home, you increase the chance of damaging your walls.

Pros

Cons

Enhanced Support: Fully supports the baby’s weight without failure

Installation Difficulty: It’s hard to set up a hardware mounted baby gate than it is a pressure fit gate

High Durability: They are made to prevent your baby from reaching or falling from the stairs. Unlike pressure mounted baby gates, they don’t have a threshold. This means that they are sturdier and won’t tip over easil

Removal: It will take time to remove them once you don’t need them anymore

Pet Safe:Increased protection from larger pets

Wide Baby Gates

Designed for to be used in hallways, the bottom of the stairs, and in doorways, wide baby gates are great if you have multiple infants in your home. They are usually 27 inches tall and expand to about 38-68 inches wide.

Pros

Cons

Width: Wide height allows for your baby to have enough room to rest and play in

It’s expanded width can make it easier for your toddlers to climb out of

Child Management: Makes it easier for parents to monitor their children

Free Standing Baby Gates

Free standing baby gates deliver a hybrid of protection of a hardware mounted gate and the portability and convenience of a playpen. Their main advantages are increased performance, and flexibility in when compared to a pressure pit pen.

Free Standing Baby Gate

Also, freestanding gates can connect across the room, or the gates can form different shapes to create an enclosed play area. Best of all, you can collapse the gate, and you can store them once you’re finished, or your child grows out of the gate.

Pros

Cons

Expansive: Easily expandable to fit multiple room dimensions

Construction: Not as durable as a hard mounted gate

Installation: They are designed to be created without the need for extra tools

Specs

There is a wide range of baby gates to choose from. While it can be confusing at first, we’ll show the most important aspects to look out for. This will help you become an intelligent buyer and make the right purchase.

Build Construction

Metal gates offer the most protection and are the most stable. Fortunately, you can find hardware-mounted and pressure pit baby gates that consist of metal. We suggest that you use a metal gate on the top of the stairs.

Plastic and wooden gates are useful as well. While they don’t have the same security as metal gates, they are still good for parents on a budget and need a quick way to childproof a room. Again, don’t use a plastic pressure pit or a wooden gate at the top of the stairs. But if your goal is to prevent your baby from reaching a certain area or a room, they’ll do just fine.

Flexibility

The second most important spec to remember is the gate’s flexibility. While you can invest in a hardware mounted baby gate, some parents might need a gate that’s easy to install and remove.

When shopping, check to see if the baby gate’s doors are easily retracted (freestanding baby gates). Pressure pit gates are also great for this, as their plastic materials can be easily carried. Get one if you have more than 4 people in your home.

How To Setup Your Baby Gates?

Setting up your baby gate requires paying attention to the instruction manual, patience, and using the right tools to install it properly. We’ll show you how to install the three most popular baby gates types right here:

Pressure Fit Baby Gates

First, you’ll want to measure the area. You have to get the correct dimensions (inches or centimeters) so that the gate fits properly. They don’t have to be installed with other tools, but they require strong, flat, and rigid surfaces on both sides so that it can stay attached.

Then, you should buy the appropriate gate. Get one that suits the style of your home and will fits your measurements. For the most safety, get a baby gate that’s certified by the product’s safety organization.

Woman Mounting Pressure Fit Baby Gate

Read the instruction manual before you install the gate. Make sure that you follow your manufacturer’s directions. The details of the procedure slightly change depending on which brand you buy your baby gate from.

Each day, you have to make sure that the gate is in good condition and the mounting system is still locked in place. Adjust it as necessary. Contact your manufacturer if you find any problems with the gate.

Hardware Mounted Baby Gates

Unlike pressure fit baby gates, hardware mounted baby gates require tools for installation. They are good for crowded areas or staircases. Still, you need to find the right measurements though. Measure the gap that’s between the surfaces and where it’s going to be attached.

Before getting baby gates that are the best for your home, there are a few factors that you need to consider.

  • Are your babies able to crawl?
  • Do the gates need to be on the wall all the time? Or do they have to come up and down frequently, like in a crowded house or their grand parent’s house?
  • Are the gates made for halls, stairs, or doorways?

Just like the pressure fit baby gate, your hardware mounted gate has fit within the room’s space. After reading the instruction manual, install the gate until its completely secure. Once it’s fully set up, make sure that it fits the hardware mounting system.

Getting A Gate For Irregular And Wide Areas

Wide gates have multiple window panels that make a single enclosure in order to fit most areas. While it does have a versatile fit, you have to measure it correctly so that it fits within the area’s dimensions.

Make sure that the measurements you made are congruent with the length of the baby gate. If you’re mounting it on a wall, screw and drill the gate onto the beat. This will keep the gate attached and stop it from falling.

Lastly, you have to install the panels. Place them at appropriate angle as suggested by the manufacturer so that it can create a wide enclosure. Most of these gates allow for three panels to be placed straight. Check your manual for the appropriate size.

How To Proof Your Room From Your Baby?

It’s okay to be worried about bringing an anxious toddler or baby into your home. Most rooms are filled with innocent, yet dangerous hassles that can be dangerous if tipped over - house plants, coins, and hard furniture.

Baby Hanging On Baby Gates

For infants, there are a few safety basics such as removing toys from the crib. This is a hazardous stage because children are curious and will attempt to try new (and potentially unsafe) things by tasting them.

Here are some tips to help you baby proof the room and make it safer for your newborn child.

Supervise And Monitor Your Baby

Don’t underestimate your baby because they are scooting or crawling. They can reach from one location to the other very fast. To make your babysitting and child supervising job easier, you should install a playpen or baby gate that’s near the

You’ll also have to find out the other things to look out for when having a baby in your home. These are some of the most common hazards to look out for and a step by step guide on how to prevent them from harming your baby.

Baby Hazards

Start by getting on the ground and notice the room from a baby’s perspective or at your toddler’s height. Assume that anything that’s close to you can potentially be reached by your baby. Evaluate the area and look for objects that could pose as suffocation/choking hazards (especially small coins), so make sure they are out of your child’s reach.

Some of the most common baby hazards are:

Plants

Some plants might be poisonous to infants and animals. Because of this, you need to place them out of your child’s reach as well.

Cleaning Formulas And Medications

To protect your baby from this safety hazard, place them in a tall medicine cabinet. Home products that are stored in low cabinets need to be monitored as your baby could accidentally gain access to them.

Sharp Objects

If you have to baby proof your kitchen, you should have locks placed on the cabinets and doors, and the utensil drawers.

Cords

This includes drapery cords and electrical cords (children can pull equipment or appliances which can accidentally cause them to fall). Wrap or wind up the cords, so they are short and safe from their grasp.

Baby Touching Electring Cord

Outlet

We all know about the outlet resistant plugs. However, child-resistant plugs are safer and stop your child from tampering with your electrical devices. But, the plastic protectors are better than nothing.

Hard Edges

You should pad low table edges such as a fireplace edge or a coffee table so your infant can’t trip over or accidentally run towards the edge. A screened barrier or a gate (or heat sources such as radiators) is suggested if you want to keep your child thoroughly protected.

Pets

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention believe that having your infant exposed towards your pets can become dangerous if unsupervised and not baby proofed. Statistically, over 100,000 children under age 10 a year are sent to the hospital emergency rooms due to dog-bite injuries.

Most of these attacks occur at home or in other locations where the dog belongs to a friend or the family’s victim. In fact, a 6-week old baby was harmed by her family’s Pomeranian when the child was left unattended with it on the bed. Small pet toys and foods can be viewed as potential choking hazards.

How to Fix This: Don’t leave your child out of your sight when a dog is present. Especially german shepherds, bull terriers, pit bulls, who are more likely to attack than other species. While they are more aggressive, you need to keep your baby safe from any pet that could come in contact with them.

Soft Bedding

Bumper pads and warm comforters might appear to be warm and safe, but they can mold around your infant’s face and accidentally suffocate them. While SIDS related deaths are less common, over 900 infants suffocate every year according to the CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission).

How to Fix This: Use a firm mattress for your baby to rest in. Don’t put comforters, pillows, soft toys, or thick bumper pads in the crib. Keep your child warm with a light blanket that is tucked around the baby mattress. Alternatively, you can dress them in a blanket sleeper.

Dishwashers

Dishwashers are a hazard because your child can have access to sharp forks and knives. And the kitchen racks can become dangerous if your baby falls on them. Additionally, dishwasher detergent can harm your child’s skin or eyes and might burn the linings of their esophagus and lungs if they swallow it.

Baby Crawling On Top Of Dishwasher Door

How to Fix This: Make sure that your child isn’t nearby when you unload or unload the dishwasher. Forks, point knives, and other sharp items should be placed inside the utensil basket.

Don’t fill up the dispenser with a load unless you’re ready to wipe out anything that’s in the cup after each cleaning cycle. Replace the top cap of a bottle and keep it placed inside a locked cabinet. Keep the dishwasher latched and closed once you’re done using it.

Conclusion

To conclude, monitoring your child’s health is the most important thing you can do as a parent. But, you still might be left confused as to what baby gate is worth your money. Because of that, we invite you to check out our 2018 Baby Gate buying guide.

In it, we’ll detail the best baby gates that are currently available and how you can obtain them via Amazon. No matter which one you buy, you’ll find an affordable baby gate that can be used to establish a safe area for your child while protecting them from the dangers of the outside world.

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