Window Cord Safety Tips for Young Children
We moved into our home when I was eight months pregnant with my oldest daughter, Summer. We were so busy moving into a new house, maintaining our jobs, and preparing for our first child that we could barely keep our heads above water – let alone finish our entire baby-proofing checklist. We did as much as we could to make our home as safe as possible for Summer, but we knew there were a few things we’d still need to fix down the road – including replacing all of our corded window coverings.
As you might imagine, our schedules didn’t slow down one bit after Summer arrived, and the baby-proofing items we promised ourselves we’d finish a few weeks later were neglected for months and years. Even though I knew we needed to replace our window coverings, I didn’t prioritize it until I recently had a moment that flagged alarm bells. While I caught her before anything could happen, I knew it was time to finally take action and find safer window coverings for our home.
September is Baby Safety Month, an awareness month dedicated to properly choosing the right products for your family. Today I’m sharing window cord safety tips from The Window Covering Safety Council to help you make your home as safe as possible. I’m sharing why window cords are dangerous for young children, what type of window coverings are safer, and how to find cordless window coverings that meet all of the safety standards to keep your little ones as safe as possible in your home.
Window Covering Safety Tips for Young Children
My children’s safety is my top priority, and with all of the extra time we’re spending at home as a family, it’s more important than ever for our home to be as safe as possible for my girls. When we began our search for safer window coverings, The Window Covering Safety Council was our go-to resource for information. The Window Covering Safety Council (WCSC) is a coalition of major U.S. window coverings manufacturers, importers and retailers dedicated to educating consumers about window cord safety. WCSC’s website, windowcoverings.org, is a comprehensive resource that includes everything you need to know about cord safety, including information and illustrated how-to features, online ordering of free retrofit safety kits, safety-related articles, design and safety tips, and links to other child-safety websites.
Why Corded Window Coverings Are Dangerous for Young ChildrenBabies, toddlers, and young children are incredibly curious and have little to no understanding of personal safety. If there is anything that could potentially cause them harm, there’s a high likelihood their little hands will find it. While it’s easy to notice obviously dangerous items like sharp knives or scissors, window cords are often overlooked when families are baby-proofing their home.
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, corded window coverings are one of the top five hidden hazards in the home. Older corded window coverings can have looped pull cords or accessible inner cords that can pose a strangulation risk to small children. Tasseled pull cords are also risky and need to be as short as possible to be well out of the reach of children.
As I mentioned earlier, I’ve caught both of my kids in situations that were too close for my comfort. It literally only takes seconds for something dangerous to happen, so it’s just not worth the risk. We just replaced the corded window coverings in Summer and Luna’s rooms with safer options, and we are currently in the process of making sure every single window in our home has a cordless window covering.
How to Choose Safer Cordless Window Coverings
Whether you’re expecting a baby or currently babyproofing your home for your infant or toddler, it’s so important to check the window coverings in your home for exposed or dangling cords. The Window Covering Safety Council encourages parents and all caregivers to use only cordless window coverings or those with inaccessible cords. And while it’s incredibly important for your home to be as safe as possible for your children, you’ll also want to check any environment where your children will be spending a considerable amount of time. Grandparents’ or relatives’ homes and in-home daycares should also be checked for cord safety.
If you’re looking to replace old blinds or install new window coverings, going cordless is easier than ever. U.S. safety standards now require that all stock products be cordless or have inaccessible cords, and you can also look for products marked with the Best for Kids™ certification label. Products with the Best for Kids™ label have gone through third-party testing and are designed for use in homes with young children.
We decided to start with our children’s rooms, and then we started replacing window coverings in all of the areas of our home where our kids play. The process has been so much quicker than we expected, and it’s SO nice to have that extra peace of mind.
While we’re all spending more time at home than ever, I encourage you to use that extra time to ensure you have safer window coverings if you have young children in your home. Thanks to the new safety guidelines and resources from The Window Safety Council, the process is easier than ever! For more information and safety tips, visit windowcoverings.org.