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Healthier Living | Child Safety | Eco Friendly Tips

Banister Guard Keeps Children From Falls Thru Balcony Balusters

by Barbara 27. May 2018 12:52

Close call: Condo should have had Kid Shield Banister Guard.

Hard to believe it has been over 13 years since our family ski trip to Copper Mountain, Colorado. My sons, one daughter-in-law, 3 granddaughters, 3 grandsons, one au pair and me. Will never forget the terror in his scream

I spotted the balcony in the 2 story condo rental when we arrived. The youngest grandkids were Will and Alex, then 4 and 2. Already operating SafeHomeProducts.com, I warned the adults to keep an eye on them.I recall it was the second or third day when Will got his head caught between the upright posts of the balcony. Screaming alerted us. We rushed to get him out.  It was then that we realized that  Alex was slim enough to slip through the posts. After that, an adult (and the older children) were on alert. Rather unnerving.

We reported this situation to the rental company. Doubt that any action was taken. The next trip: we rented a single story unit.

Make your home safe! Avoid scares like this one!

Sincerely,

Barbara

Shorten Shade Cords with Safety Cleats to Reduce Child Deaths

by Barbara 3. December 2016 07:28

Dear Readers,

Cardinal Gates Shade Cord Safety Cleats popped into my head when I watched the Nightly News last night (December 2, 2016). The story focussed on the tragic deaths of two young children who strangled in danging shade cords. My heart goes out to these families and others who've had similar tragedies over the years. Mini-blind cords are reportedly among the most dangerous.

According to information on the internet, cords longer than 8 inches are not safe. Installation of new cordless shades is recommended. For those many families who cannot afford those purchases, Cardinal Gates Shade Cord Safety Cleats add a modicum of safety. No, this is not a fool proof solution. It is a safety option until cordless shades or blinds are installed.

Loose cords are strangulation hazards for children up to age 8, according to an internet article. By consistently wrapping dangling cords high above a child's reach, the temptation is lessened. We also recommend keeping chairs, sofas, stools, etc. away from windows where shades are mounted.

Buy one, buy 12. Safe Home saves you money with bulk packaging. In our home there are no children under 8. One "clawed" Siamese cat did manage to destroy several of our shade cords before we wound the cords up high on cleats. The cleats are hardly noticeable. We prefer to keep shades up in most rooms also due to Buddy's love for clawing them!

Cardinal Gates Shade Cord Safety Wrap, Clear Cleat, 12/BX or Cardinal Gates Cord Safety Wrap, Clear Cleat are featured on our website. Use for short, long and/or thick cords. Install cleat high enough so children and cats cannot reach it. Wrap cord around the cleat. High mounting on the window frame helps to deter attention from the cords. The included VHB (very high bond) adhesive means fast, easy installation. Adheres to metal, glass, wood and plastic. Peel and stick: one hour curing time. No drilling or hardware! Transparent plastic blends into any decor . Dimensions: 3.25 inches long by 0.50 inches deep by 1.00 inches wide. Twelve cord wraps in this package. Loose cords are strangulation hazards for small children.   NOTE: Not recommended for non-ratcheting blinds.  Bulk package: application directions included. Made in China.  Remember no safety product substitutes for adult supervision of children.

We installed these on most of our window shades (Circa 1993) because of our Siamese cat Buddy whose teeth and claws have caused a lot of damage.

Sincerely,

Barbara

Furniture Anchors Prevent Dressers and Chests from Injuring or Killing Children

by Barbara 30. June 2016 04:13

Using furniture securing devices to keep children safe from injuries or death from furniture falling onto them.

Q:"36 million chests and dressers were recalled by IKEA on June 29, 2016. According to IKEA, "products meet all mandatory stability requirements in Europe and other parts of the world." U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission Chairman Elliott Kaye said in a statement on Tuesday that tipped-over furniture or television sets kill a U.S. child every two weeks,How do I keep my children safe? Thanks. Tina

Answer: IKEA furniture is not the only source of such accidents. IKEA is offering free furniture anchors to its customers. Furniture anchors are the best safety device to use. When children pull on dressers in an attempt to open upper drawers or pull out a drawer to climb on, the dresser or chest can easily fall on them. In 2010 or 2011 Consumer Reports recommended ToppleStop furniture and TV straps for securing furniture. Each set of Topple Stops has two straps, one secures to a wall stud on one to the TV set or the stand.

Topple Stops furniture straps attach to the back of solidly set furniture and secure to wall studs behind the furniture. Topple Stops can anchor appliances and furniture that weighs up to 400 lbs. For items that weigh up to 200 lbs. install a minimum of 1 kit with two point attaching. Use two kits or four point attachment for objects that weigh 200 to 400 lbs. Remember that nothing substitutes for parental supervision.

For metal units, attach Topple Stop half with an adhesive pad to a dry surface cleaned with isopropyl alcohol (that gets off any residual grease). Then attach the other half to a wall stud.

For wooden units, the preferred attachment method is using #8 x 1 inch wood screws to attach the fasteners to the frame or the inside edges top or sides of the furniture.

The wall attachment requires using #10 x 2 inch wood screws to the wall studs behind the furniture. If studs are metal, use t-bar anchors to toggle bolts. You can use wall anchors if each has a minimum holding strength of 100 pounds.

Heavy Duty ToppleStop Furniture Fastening System Kit Contents:

  • Two (2) grey Thumb Lock fasteners, 2" long by one wide with 3/4" lock lever. Use with wood screws or 3M VHB adhesive attachment. (Bonding Times: Wait four hours before adding strap. Adhesive fully bonds after 72 hours.)
  • Two (2) 12" long, 3/4" wide grey locking strap with grommet for wood screw attachment.
  • Four (4) #8 x 1" wood screws for furniture attachment    Two (2) #10 x 2" wood screws for wood wall stud attachment.

Thumb lock fastener attaches to locking strap. Fastener can be moved and locked in either direction on the strap. Lift locking lever to "open." Lock fastener on strap by pushing lever down firmly. Note: Thumb Lock adhesive is non-hardening. Fasteners can be removed without damaging surface if slowly and gently pried off with appropriate tool.Suggestion: Install when children are not present, i.e. asleep for the night.

We also recommend Topple Stops for use in day care centers, hotels, motels, etc. to increase safety and reduce liability insurance costs.

Product Performance Warranty: This product does NOT replace child supervision. This product is only intended to help or reduce movement of equipment during jarring movement. It is common understanding that fastened equipment should fare better during jarring movement than equipment that is not fastened, helping to reduce the amount of damage and injury that could result. No warranty can be properly applied to the performance of the products due to the uncertainty of forces generated, and numerous variables involved in a jarring event, or natural disaster. Products that are defective in material and workmanship prior to installation of the product will be replaced. The user or third party installer accepts liability for injury, loss, or damage, direct or consequential, arising from use or misuse or inability to use the product.

Thanks for your question.

Sincerely,

Barbara

Window Blind or Window Shade Wraps Increase Safety for Children

by Barbara 8. June 2015 07:50

Question: "Please suggest how I can make window blinds and accordian shades more child safe. We cannot afford to have them all replaced. The cords are long. Thanks. Susan

Answer: We sell the Cardinal Gates Window Blind Cord Safety Wrap cord wrap that allows you to shorten exposed cords. We have only animals living in our home. We do have cats. The young Siamese ruined several duet shades by chewing on the cords (and climbing the shades). We installed Cardinal Gates window cord wraps on most of our shades. And opened the shades to the max to keep little Buddy from climbing.

These devices attach to your window glass, the frame or the wall using a very high bond adhesive. Made of clear plastic, the window blind cord wrap is hardly visible. It is a rounded oval shape,35 inches long and 1 inch wide in the middle. The cord wrap on the underside is 2 inches by just under a half inch. This size can handle long and or thick cords. You just wrap the cord around the cleat out of reach of animals and children. The clearness of the plastic and the installed heigh keep  a child's attention from cords. We actually installed ours very high so the cat (not de-clawed) cannot play with the window shade nor the cords. Do not install on non-racheting blinds. To lower or raise the shade unwrap to the desired length and then re-wrap around the holder. I mounted the wraps high on the window glass.

The Cardinal Gates Window Blind Cord Safety Wrap is made in China.

Thank you for your question. We do sell these in a bulk pack to save you money.

Sincerely,

Barbara

Practical Ideas to Reduce Heating and Cooling Bills Now and In the Future

by Barbara 4. February 2014 06:37

Question about how to reduce my energy bills without spending a lot of money.

Q: "My gas bills this winter almost doubled with the very cold weather. Can you give me some ideas about how to reduce my bills without being cold? Thanks. Phil"

Answer: First, contact your gas company to learn if they have a one time free energy audit available to customers. If not, I suggest you contact several insulation contractors in your area to give you their opinions about the R values in your attic and side walls. You may choose not to add additional insulation. With some rebates available in some areas, adding insulation may not be as expensive as you believe.

Next, check for air leakage from your unused electrical outlets that are on the outside walls of your home. Safe Home sells a variety of plugs and covers to reduce the leakage. For examples, look at the electrical outlet covers and sliding door outlet covers such as CoverPlug Duplex Outlet Cover for Electric Outlets, the Plug Guard Energy Saving Safety Outlet Cover, the IVORY STD 3-Prg 1 Screw Outlet Cover,6/PK, the Kiddy Cop Outlet Covers, Leviton 12777, 12/Box, or the Sockit Lockets.  We installed the Care Cover outlet covers one bitterly cold January years ago and learned how much cold air was blocked from entering our home.

If you choose outlet plugs, I suggest you purchase insulating covers that install behind each electrical outlet. To install, remove your current outlet cover, push the insulation around the plugs and replace the liner and the outlet plugs.

Use insulating foam around all water lines into your home. Make sure the "flaps" seal tightly on exhausts from clothes dryers.

Purchase a set back thermostat for your furnace. Many utility companies have a rebate to help pay for this unit.  Do remember that setting the temperature back means that time is required to get the temperature to a comfortable level. We learned in June 2013 that our original furnace was undersized: the new one comes up to daytime temperatures much faster. We keep our nightime temperature set at 68 degrees and daytime at 72 degrees. The natural gas fireplace keeps the family room comfortable on the below zero days and nights.

Change your furnace filters regularly. Choose a MERV rating that works with your furnace. Too high of a MERV rating means you'll not get much air through your filter. Safe Home filters have two layers of filtration. When the white layer gets gray, it is time to change the filter. The second layer filters out odors and chemicals; the first, dirt, dust and pollen. Safe Home filters come in one inch sizes that are self-sealing due to an internal frame and in 4 inch filters that have a self-sealing perimeter.

Use supplemental electric heaters where you need them. We suggest the ECO SAVE Ceramic Heater that is compact and efficient and used only 750 watts of electricity. If your feet get cold while the rest of you feels comfortable, then consider the Toasty Toes Heated Footrest.

If you have the money and your furnace is 15 or more years old, consider replacing the furnace. Make sure you get at least three bids. If the BTU ratings vary a lot, get another bid or two. YOu don't want an oversized furnace nor an undersized one (like the one we had for over 20 years).

We replaced both AC and the main furnace this summer with next to the highest efficiency units. (Total cost was $5400 less the rebates.) The new furnace is two stage, i.e. two blower speeds. We got rebates from both the gas and electric companies. Also we did not choose the most expensive units available. Sometimes you have to choose between a few thousand dollars and paying your HVAC person annual AC and heating tune-ups.

This past month we did use an electric ceramic heater set at 65 degrees F in our tiled bathroom and another one in the kitchen (ceramic flooring). That took the chill off in those rooms. Unfortunately, our new kitten has yet to learn to keep his claws in. So the insulated window shades remain up even in the cold weather. (A toss up between ripped shades and more insulation or keeping Buddy from climbing them.)

If you have other questions, please contact us.

Sincerely, Barbara

Choosing the Correct John Sterling Window Guard Type to Meet My Needs

by Barbara 13. August 2013 08:05

Question about which John Sterling Window Guards I should purchase.

Q: "I need to protect windows in an apartment complex. I started an order for John Sterling 1125 window guards that did not complete. Please help me.Thanks. Walter"

Answer: There are three types of John Sterling window guards, the 1120 series that meet NYC requirements for non-sleeping rooms, the 1130 series, that come in basic bulk packaging and in units that include mounting bars, escape pins, brackets and screws and the 1170 series, currently only one model that swings open and removes from the mounting posts.

We determined in our phone call that you needed John Sterling 1130 series that open. Below is basic information for anyone who needs to install window guards.

John Sterling Window Guard Types: Fixed or Non-Opening and Swing Open. Check with your local building inspector for the code that applies to your city or state prior to ordering. Measure windows accurately. John Sterling does not recommend mounting these guards vertically.

Non-Opening Window Guards. 1120 Series. 4.5 inch spacing between the bars. These can be ordered in White or Black These are secured with 2.5 inch #10 One Way Screws. To remove the guards, you must break off the screw head and drill out the screw. Add 4 inches to bar height for maximum covered opening. Meet NYC standards for non-sleeping windows.

JS-1123-P   3 Bars 15" H X 23-42"W 
JS-1123-S   3 Bars 15" H X 14-24"W
JS-1123-L   3 Bars 15" H X 42-58"W
JS-1124      4 Bars 20"H X 23-42 "W
JS-1125      5 Bars 25"H X 23-42" W

Non-Opening Window Guards 1130 Series Basic Guards, Bulk Packed. 3.5 inch spacing between the bars. Purchase mounting hardware, locking channel (if desired) etc.  separately. The second number indicates the number of bars. Ex. 1133 has 3 bars and 1139 has 9 bars.  With conversion kits, all can be made swing open type guards. For larger projects, this is the best choice as it is least expensive. White or black.  Add 4 inches for maximum coverage, ex. JS-BK-1133 will protect 11 to 15 inch opening. The last number indicates # of bars. Ex. 1133=3 bars.
         1. JS-BK-1133     11"x 24-42"W
         2. JS-BK-1134-S  14"x 14-24"W
         3. JS-BK-1134     14"x 24-42"W
         4. JS-BK-1134-L  14"x 41-58"W
         5  JS-BK-1135     18"x 24-42"W
         6. JS-BK-1136     22"x 24-42"W
         7  JS-BK-1136-L  22"x 41-58"W
         8. JS-BK-1136-EL 22"x 58-76"W
         9  JS-BK-1138     30"x 24-42"W
         10 JS-BK-1139    33"x 24-42"W

Opening Window Guards 1130 Series. Swing Open. 3.5 inch spacing between the bars. White or Black. Opening protected can be horizontal or vertical. PKG indicates that the screws, locking channel, mounting bracket, lock pin are included.Only white are listed below. The EL and L units are special packages Safe Home had made up since these wider units are not otherwise available except to commercial installers. Add a maximum of 4 inches to the height for maximum window protection.


        1. JS-1133              11"x24-42"W  3Bars Protect opening 11-15 Inches
        2. JS-1134              14"x24-42"W  4Bars Protect opening 14-18 Inches
        3. JS-1135              18"x24-42"W  5Bars Protect opening 18-22 inch
        4. JS-1136              22"x24-42"W  6Bars Protect opening 22-26" Inches
        5. JS-1136-L-PKG     22"x41-58"W  6Bars Protect Opening 22-26" 41-58"Wide
        6. JS-1136-EL-PKG   22"x58-76"W  6Bars Protect Opening:22-26",58-76"wide
        5  JS-1138-PKG       30"x24-42"W  8Bars Protect opening 30-34",24-42"Wide
        6. JS-1139-PKG       33"x24-42"W  9Bars Protect opening 33-37",24-42"wide

Opening Window Guard 1170 Series. Angle Iron. White or Black. Has Locking Channel. Lifts out from mounting brackets. Very difficult to cut with bolt cutters.

JS-1175      21"x24-42 inches.

Please measure your window openings carefully. Remember that window locks are available to limit window openings. These are both keys and un-keyed styles.

Thanks for your question. Go to SafeHomeProducts.com and put the product code of the window guards require into the search bar.

Sincerely,

Barbara

Choosing John Sterling Window Guards for Casement Windows Based Upon Screen Sizes

by Barbara 16. July 2012 10:59

Question about John Sterling window guards.

Q: " I have just screen sizes for casement windows I want to protect with window guards. Can you help me? Thanks. Sondra.

Answer:

Here is a list of the screen sizes you provided and the window guards suggested by John Sterling.

If the second dimension is height, then turn the guards to mount vertically like prison bars. Use only the fixed if possible because the swing units could swing down and cause injury to someone.

Please go to the SafeHomeProducts.com website for more information.

Hope this helps. Thanks for your questions.

Sincerely,

Barbara


 

Childproofing A Home Against the Biggest Home Risks to Children

by Barbara 8. July 2012 06:00

Question about the most common dangers to children in and around homes.

Q: "We have a 6 month old baby, our first. Where should we begin to childproof our home? What are the biggest risks to a toddler or younger child? Thanks. Sue."

Answer: According to the USA Today, July 5, 2012 report, the Consumer Protection Product Safety Commission lists drowning, poisoning and tipping furniture as most common dangers. You may recall the baby crib recall. The cribs our parents used for us and we used for our children and grandchildren can no longer be sold. Remember the double release locks you pushed with your foot and the side dropped?  The Commission received reports and does research to determine which products are safe.

Drowning, poisoning and tipping furniture are considered the most common risks to young children. Cordless window blinds are recommended to reduce risks of strangulation.

The COSC recommends that whatever safety devices you buy for do-it-yourself installation or have installed by handymen or professional childproofers meet voluntary industry standards or are recommended by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association.

Common sense tells you that poisons, medications, dishwasher detergent, etc. must be stored in secure places whether that place is a cupboard or a closet.

Here are a few suggestions based upon our customers' purchases:

These are childproofing products that are easily installed and may save the life of your child or grandchild or a visiting child.

Thank you for your questions.

Sincerely,

Barbara

 

Sliding Door Lock and Sliding Window Lock for Security and Child Safety

by Barbara 2. January 2012 10:42

Question about how to install a sliding door lock on my interior closet doors, my exterior slider windows and my patio sliding door.

Q: "I do not want to install window guards on my windows but I do want to get some ventilation during the winter months here in Florida. We are on the Atlantic side and the breezes are great right now (January). I am concerned about security on the patio door. and downstairs windows. For the upstairs windows, I am concerned more about child safety when grandkids visit. What do you suggest? Thanks. Julie."

Answer: The Cardinal Gates Patio Door Lock comes only in white. the Patio Door Guardian allows you to lock the door with a 3" gap for ventilation. Use on right and left handed sliding doors. Recognized as "one of the best new child safety products" by the National Safe Kids Campaign in Washington, D.C., the Patio Door Guardian works double duty as both a security device and as a childproofing lock.  This unit has a 2 position spring loaded lock with a left and right stop. The keeper plates allows for a 3 inch ventilation gap without minimizing security. This fits most sliding doors and most windows that are vinyl, aluminum or wood. The questions and answers below should help you make your decision.

A new option for sliding doors is the Cardinal Gate Lock-N-Block Sliding Door Gate This gate requires some minor assembly.

Assembly Instructions

  • Choose appropriate screw-in clamps for your door. Screw clamps into gate. These clips will fasten to your open sliding glass door.
  • Screw the stabilized pads into the opposite side of gate. These fit into C-channel of the door frame.
  • Attach gate to open door with clamps, fitting gate into door jamb. Close door to lock in gate.
  • Screw door stop to sliding track to secure sliding door.

Gate Operation:

  • Push red safety button and lift handle 90 degrees upward.
  • Pull gate to open.
  • Close gate and lower handle back to original position.
  • Gate will click when locked.

Gate Dimensions :

  • Gate width is 24"
  • Height 30.5"
  • Thickness: 1"
  • Bar Spacing 1 7/8"
  • Fits all standard sliding doors 1" and 1.5" thick

Lock and Block Sliding Glass Door Gate Features :

  • Patent Pending! Only sliding glass door gate available on the market today!
  • Securely clamps onto the functional panel of a sliding panel door.
  • Helps reduce the risk of injury to your infant or pet, as well as damage to your sliding screen door.
  • Safety gate swings open in both directions, allowing easy entering and existing.
  • Use gate and screen door simultaneously
  • Steel construction
  • Gate swings open in both directions
  • 1 year manufacturer against warranty defects.
  • Gives visibility to sliding doors so child does not run into the sliding door.
  • Along with parent supervision, parents can feel comfortable leaving the sliding door open allowing the fresh air to circulate.
  • Can also be used as a pet gate.
  • Color: White gate with gray hardware.


Questions and Answers:

  •  Will the Patio Door Guardian work on all Patio Doors? This lock is designed to work on all inside sliding Patio Doors.
  •  Will the Patio Door Guardian secure my Patio Door from intruders?This lock is designed to keep your patio door closed and though it does have security benefits it does not lock with a key. It will deter intruders as significant force would have to be used to penetrate the door.
  •  When I mount the Patio Door Guardian to my patio door, how do I determine where to put the screws? You must mount the screws away from the edge of the glass on the sliding door, so you do not break the glass. Do not rely only on the location of mounting plate holes provided with your Patio Door Guardian instructions. Hold the lock up to the desired height and mark your mounting holes away from the glass edge of the door.

I would look at other options for sliding closet doors unless your doors are solid and white. One option would be the Window Guardian Window Stoppers, 4/BOX which are removable suction cups that can stop sliding closet doors as well as windows to keep kids out. These would have to placed in at least two places per door to keep the door from sliding.

Thank you for your question.

Sincerely, Barbara

Window Wedges Made in USA Add Window Safety to Military and Public Housing

by Barbara 27. May 2011 05:33

Question about the Window Wedge Adjustable Velcro Window Stop,144/CS window stop product for slider windows in military housing.

Q: "Our company supplies military installations around the world with safety products. We've been asked to quote on window stops for slider windows for military housing in Asia. Will the Window Wedge work for slider windows? We don't want to install window guards. Thanks. Valerie."

Answer: The Window Wedge fits on the window frame, not in the tracks. Make certain that the window frames are wide enough as Window Wedge® uses one 8 inch velcro strip to which you velcro the 4 inch wedge portion. This product is made in the USA. We asked you to have your customer measure the windows and they are 3/4 inch wide. We recommend that you have two wedges i.e. one package installed on each window. That is because a child pulling on a slider could possibly pull the unit out of the track.

Each window wedge loop strip is 8 inches long and 3/4 inches wide.The actual wedge section is 3.25 inches long.To open the window greater than four inches for cleaning, remove the wedge from the velcro loop portion of the window stopper.

To Install Window Wedge Window Stoppers On a Slider Window:

    Close window. Clean window frame surface before application of loop strip.
    Peel off backing of 8 inch loop strip and place in center of upper horizontal window frame (not on the glass)
    Attach the Window Wedge® to the loop strip with the
    two tines facing the adjacent window section.
    Slide window open until contact is made with the Window Wedge®
    Attach the second Window Wedge® unit to the bottom part of the
    Adjust the position of the Window Wedge® so that the
    window opening is 4 inches or less.
    Note: For maximum child safety, maximum window opening should not exceed 4 inches.

To Install Window Wedge Window Stoppers On a Double Hung or Single Hung Window:

    Close the window
    Clean the surface of the window trim prior to application. Do not attach to glass itself.
    Peel off the backing from the 8 inch loop strip and place in the center of the upper window frame for a double hung or single hung window.
    Attach the Window Wedge® to the loop strip.
    Attach the second window wedge on the other side at the same height.
    Open the window until it is stopped by the window wedge.
    Note: For maximum child safety, maximum window opening should not exceed 4 inches.

Safe Home does offer bulk pricing on this product. Please contact us directly if you need over 144 packages.

Thanks for your question and your purchase!

Sincerely, Barbara