Having a fireplace makes your living room very cozy and makes a great ambiance. Everyone enjoys sitting next to the fireplace.
However, once you have a baby, you immediately realize how dangerous a fireplace could be for your little one. This is when keeping your baby safe becomes a top priority. So, for that to be possible, we’re going to give you a few ideas on how to babyproof a fireplace.
- The fireplace is a very cozy place for your family to gather next to the warmth and create a nice ambiance.
- This doesn’t mean that it’s not super dangerous for the littlest family members.
- Make sure to babyproof your fireplace if you have a child.
- Placing a gate or a glass door is one of the most common methods that are known to be efficient when dealing with this.
- Keeping your chimney clean and getting a carbon monoxide detector both help in identifying whether your air is safe for not only your baby but also the whole household.
- Even if your fireplace isn’t being used, babyproofing the hearth goes a long way.
How You Can Babyproof a Fireplace
The most common way of babyproofing a fireplace is placing a gate or a glass door in front of your fireplace. Other methods of ensuring the safety of your child include keeping your chimney clean and explaining to them the dangers of being around the fireplace.
A very important thing to consider is how babies view the world and why a fireplace would interest them.
Don’t be afraid to get on all fours and experience the world as a toddler. Start by looking at small things on the ground, sharp edges, or objects that could be dangerous to them.
Keep in mind the height of your baby, so if you have a baby that can’t walk yet, it won’t be able to do as much as a child that can freely walk.
Also Read: Things To Do With Leftover Breast Milk?
Avoid Freestanding Screens
Freestanding screens or gates are not very efficient when it comes to protecting your baby. These aren’t very stable, and your baby or toddler could just pull it or accidentally trip or lean on it and fall on the gate or, even worse, into the fireplace.
The freestanding screens are also more often than not made out of easily-flammable materials, so they’re definitely not a safe bet and don’t fully ensure that you’ll be free of a fire hazard.
To avoid this, buy a gate that is specifically made for a fireplace and is made out of heat-resistant materials. Moreover, it’s best if these materials do not get hot to the touch as well.
Additionally, make sure that it is attached to the wall or somehow secured instead of freestanding so your toddler doesn’t lean on it and injure itself.
Place a Gate
Placing a gate is a great place to start. This is the most obvious solution to babyproofing your fireplace.
Accordingly, to not allow access, you can put anything that you can around it. This includes a gate that stops your baby from entering the area around the fireplace.
This previously walkable area becomes a safe zone for only you to walk into. You no longer have to worry about your child’s safety. What’s more, is that it doesn’t really ruin the way your fireplace looks, yet it provides comfort in knowing that your child will be safe.
Furthermore, it’s very important how you place the gate around the fireplace. On the one hand, if it’s too close, it might get hit by the flames and cause a fire. On the other hand, if it’s too far away can make it super easy for your child to just walk around the two ends of it.
So, make sure you put it at a safe distance, where it’s not too close to cause a problem but not too far for it to not be functional or of use.
Placing a Glass Door
Placing a glass door is similar to placing a gate, except for the fact that it takes a lot less space. So, if you don’t want to install a gate, a glass door is the option for you.
Installing a glass door on the fireplace doesn’t really stop your baby closer to the fire. However, it ensures the baby won’t fall into the flames. If your baby looks at the fire, it will be done safely, through a glass.
It also keeps your entire home safe as the sparks and coal that can come out of the fireplace are now kept inside. This also counts for the smoke and fumes discarded through the chimney.
Keeping Your Chimney Clean
That’s why keeping your chimney clean plays a crucial role in your baby’s health. You’re probably wondering how keeping your chimney clean has anything to do with baby proofing. However, it’s got a lot more to do with it.
Soot is usually a byproduct of a fire. This is why, if the linings of the fireplace are filled with soot, there are blockages that prevent the smoke from properly going upwards and out throughout the chimney.
This is horrible for your home, but most importantly for your baby. Also, breathing in the fumes can be super bad for your collective health.
Get a Carbon Monoxide Detector
This calls for a carbon monoxide detector. Get yourself one of these detectors. You’ll have no trouble identifying how much carbon monoxide there is in your home.
Moreover, this could prove very useful as you’ll know the levels of carbon monoxide, and the alarm will go off to let you know that staying longer is unsafe.
How To Babyproof the Hearth
Most fireplaces have a hearth which is the little platform that has sharp edges that you obviously have to babyproof. Along with that, most people usually keep their fireplace tools here. And that just means more danger.
Firstly, to babyproof the hearth, you have to remove the sharp tools or the fireplace tools in general, as they are on the ground and in your baby’s reach.
Secondly, its sharp corners are usually made out of brick or stone, which are materials that are sure to cause more than just bruises to your child if left unattended. This means that the sharp edges need to be covered with foam or something soft.Lastly, don’t forget to remove the pads or whatever you put on the edges as most soft materials we use for babyproofing things are generally flammable.
In conclusion, babyproofing the fireplace is essential for every household with a toddler. You need to make sure that your little one isn’t going to injure itself on the sharp edges of the hearth or with the fireplace tools. Besides, you should also avoid freestanding screens and aim for glass panels or doors and well-placed gates.
I am a stay-at-home mom of a wonderful son. I write on this blog as a hobby to help fellow mothers in their parental journey 🙂