How to Baby-Proof Doors

Prevent finger pinches and access to dangerous areas.
Doors can be a surprisingly dangerous part of the home for a curious child.

First of all, the hinges of the door can be very pinchy, and injuries to delicate fingers are known to happen with improperly baby-proofed doors.

Second of all, sometimes you just don’t want children to be able to open doors leading to dangerous areas that they should be kept away from.

In this guide, I will tell you how to deal with both of these issues and make all of the doors in your home perfectly baby-proofed and safe for your little one.

How to: baby-proofing doorknobs to keep them shut

The way to baby-proof doors is to simply make it so that they can’t be opened by the inquisitive toddler.

If your doors already have locks, the easiest way to baby-proof them is to simply lock them every time you close them.

One option is to change out all door knobs that don’t lock with those that do have a locking mechanism, but that can be costly and really not a great option unless you didn’t really like your existing doorknobs to begin with.

Baby-proofing products for doorknobs exist in a variety of formats.

When choosing one for your home, the first real question in is whether or not your child is observant and capable of circumventing the lock.

Believe me, you’d be amazed at how intelligent a crafty toddler can be. Don’t just assume that because you put a baby-proofing lock on the door that they’re not going to get through it!

The second question is whether the lock is convenient to disable for you. Some of them can be a royal pain in the you-know-what if you have to disable them constantly to get through.

My recommendations: doorknob baby-proofing products

There are tons of different products for baby-proofing your door knobs, and there’s really no one “best” solution for all homes.

Child Proof Deluxe Door Top Lock

Child Proof Deluxe Door Top LockThe product I recommend that works for most doors is the Child Proof Deluxe Door Top Lock (click here to check price on Amazon).

I recommend it over other solutions for a few reasons:

  1. You place it at the top of the door. There’s no possible way your child could reach it, so they can’t circumvent it unlike locks that go on the doorknob.
  2. It works on pretty much any door.
  3. They’re easy to lock and unlock; you just pull on a latch.
  4. You can open the lock from either side of the door, which is something unique in these door baby-proofing products.
  5. They’re easy to install, and you can do it in less than 5 minutes.

You can buy them online, and have them shipped to your home.

The plastic they use does seem somewhat flimsy, but you shouldn’t have any trouble with that. They keep the door securely shut, and even the most stubborn of toddlers won’t be able to get it open no matter how hard they try.

An upside to the material used is that in the case of an emergency (heaven forbid), an adult could easily break the lock quickly.

All in all, if you’re looking for a way to baby-proof your doors, I think this is the best option.

Another solution: baby gates

If you have a baby gate around the house, setting it up in a doorway that you want sectioned off is a good solution. Although they might be better off used to block off dangerous areas of the house that don’t have doors, like the tops of staircases.

Not recommended:

I don’t recommend using any products that use adhesive. Yes, they’re effective in baby-proofing, but most of them in my experience are an absolute nightmare to clean off the adhesive when you remove them.

In fact, they could straight-up ruin your doors. Just avoid them.

I also don’t recommend locks that go straight onto the doorknobs. The reason being that children are just too smart to figure them out, and they really aren’t any deterrent at all. All they’ll do is watch you open it once, figure it out, and into the restricted area they go.

Preventing pinched fingers

Prevent Finger PinchesEven when there are doors that you don’t need to physically stop your child from getting through, getting fingers pinched in doors is a very common (and painful) experience when you have a toddler in the home.

The best solution to this that I’ve found is the Safety 1st Finger Pinch Guard (click here to check price on Amazon) which is basically a U-shaped foam blocker that you put on the side of the door. You can place it at any height (so your child can’t reach it) and the doors will no longer close all the way, preventing finger-pinches from happening.

These are foam, and if you were to leave a window open on a windy day so that the door slammed really hard, it might break it, so just keep that in mind. Other than that, they work perfectly for what you need them for: preventing pinched fingers.

You can click here to purchase these on Amazon.

A DIY solution to preventing pinched fingers

baby proof door DIYAlthough this won’t look as attractive, you can do a simple DIY project to baby-proof your doors to prevent pinched fingers.

  1. Take an old towel that you don’t need anymore.
  2. Place it over the top of the door, closest to the hinged side. See if the door stays open far enough to prevent pinchings.
  3. If not, fold the towel in half and try again.
  4. If the towel is too big and you don’t ming destroying it, you can cut it up into squares and use them on other doors, too.

See if the door will stay open far enough to prevent fingers from getting pinched. It should work! If you can match the color of the towel to the door, it will look much better. Well, as good as a towel hanging on the door can look.

This could also work with an old sweater or other clothes, if you have them hanging around.

For the DIYer, this is a workable solution, though!

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