We can all agree that creating an environment that includes a baby proof fireplace is a crucial step toward making the whole house safe for your children.
We also know for a fact that babies have more energy than we think, and their energetic nature can take them anywhere inside the house.
This means that they can get near dangerous areas like heating fireplaces.
Don’t worry, in this WarmthPedia guide, we’ll take a tour around the best things to do to baby proof fireplace, what to do before that, and what general instructions can be of help.
And by the end of this WarmthPedia guide, you’ll get to notice how we made it our goal to baby proof fireplace, instead of asking you to get rid of the fireplace, or use it when the children are asleep, or when they get older.
- What is a Baby Proof Fireplace?
- What to Do Before You Baby Proof Fireplace?
- How Do You Baby Prove a Fireplace?
- How Do I Stop My Baby from Touching the Fireplace?
- Smarter approaches to Baby Proof Fireplace
What is a Baby Proof Fireplace?
It’s a method in which you’re making sure obtaining a fireplace that runs in winter can’t be of harm to your baby children.
In other words, it’s making sure your fireplace can operate freely, without the fear of your children hurting themselves when you’re not paying attention to their energetic nature.
What to Do Before You Baby Proof Fireplace?
Let’s get down to business, your baby likes to explore new things inside the house, and you want him to go on with that in a natural way, but without the risk of hurting himself.
First, start to gauge what dangers can be found around the house.
My baby boy is 8 months, and he literally just stands on low tables, takes everything to the ground, and starts learning what those things are, occasionally putting them inside his mouth for extra learning.
However, I don’t want anything hurtful to happen to my baby boy, therefore, I made a list of everything that can hurt him, and I removed them from any easy-to-reach area that’s viable for him.
Fireplaces, however, can’t be removed, and as winter is coming close, you want the fireplace to be running efficiently, and your baby boy safe and happy.
Therefore, to baby proof fireplace, start by acting like a baby- not in the literal sense- but get down on your hands and knees, and try to touch the fireplace.
This will help you examine how their environment will be down there, and what can possibly cause them harm, besides a hot fireplace of course.
Are there sharp edges? Pointy corners, are doors near it kind of dangerous? Answer those questions to get a closer grip on the dangers.
Now that you got closer to dangers, make a list of those dangers, to check when you go shopping for baby proof tools.
How Do You Baby Prove a Fireplace?
Explain The Dangers of a Fire
Start the process of baby proof fireplace by explaining the dangers of a fire to your children.
No matter how young they are, you can express that this is a dangerous spot, and they’ll hurt themselves if they attempt to get closer.
The older they are, the easier, but the younger ones need the simplest of motions and explanations to tell them it’s a dangerous spot.
They won’t always stay away from it, but it’s the first step towards baby proofing the fireplace.
Put a Gate Around the Fireplace
There are 2 types of gates you can put around a fireplace, a portable one you install occasionally when the child is around, and an already installed gate with a door for adult passage.
I totally understand that such gating can damage the ambiance, but it’s the easiest, most common, and most effective way to baby proof fireplace.
Not all gates are effective for baby proofing, but the best ones have to be attached to the wall, allow no passage of entrance for the children and have an access point for the adults to access the fireplace with ease.
Glass Doors Can Help
You can install a glass door to your fireplace that works as an external shield against harming a child’s hand.
But you have to test that the installation is picture-perfect, and test when a fireplace is operating for more than an hour that it isn’t going to heat the glass to an unbearable level.
If any of those tests failed, refrain from using a glass door, to begin with.
Chimney Cleaning Is a Must
You have to clean the chimney periodically, and make sure it’s clean at nearly all times.
Carbon monoxide is no joke, and nearly 20K kids go to the hospitals’ emergency rooms on yearly basis, due to carbon monoxide poisoning, as the chimney keeps on polluting the whole environment when it’s not cleaned.
Baby Proof Fireplace Hearth Too
A fireplace hearth can be problematic as well, you have to work its edges to make sure no elbows or knees are harmed by the hearth edges.
Therefore, you have to soften the edges and make it an all-round soft surface that won’t be threatening to a child’s arm or leg.
Moreover, you can create a DIY environment around it with sofas or other furniture, we’ll explain the method later.
Keep Your Fireplace Tools Out of Reach.
Last but not least, always keep your fireplace tools out of reach. My fireplace’s remote control was one of the first items that my baby boy used to put in his mouth.
So, keep those items away from the child’s grasp, and hide them in harder-to-reach areas.
What Age Is Baby Proofing No Longer Needed?
It depends on how active your baby child is, and how educated he/she is in regard to the dangers of a fireplace.
Generally speaking, it takes them to grow up to 10-12 months old before they can feel how dangerous it can be.
So please, don’t hesitate about baby proofing a fireplace even when the baby tells you they understand it’s hurtful to touch a fireplace.
How Do I Stop My Baby from Touching the Fireplace?
Educate them first as much as you can on understanding that a fireplace is hot and dangerous.
Then install the gate we talked about, it’ll keep the child away until they come of age.
Then you can just remove the gate and fully enjoy the ambiance provided by the fireplace.
Smarter approaches to Baby Proof Fireplace
Using a Playmat to Interlock the Fireplace
This is a money-saving method that allows you to block the hearth and any potential damage it can inflict, using a playmat usually enjoyed by children.
It covers the hearth, not the fireplace, so you can take that off the checklist on how to protect against heart potential damage.
This video explains it further:
Using a Bench Seat to Cover Fireplace and Hearth
This is a great DIY step to cover the fireplace and hearth using a bench seat.
Of course, you won’t be using the fireplace during that time, but it saves you the hassle of caring about where your children may be playing near a fireplace.
Maintain Space Around Fireplace All The Time
Try to keep the kids 30-35 inches away from the fireplace at all times.
According to the European Union’s safety standards, kids kept 30-35 inches away from heat sources are most likely to be safer than closer distances.
Mastering how to baby proof fireplace is a must! You should always know how and what to do when you baby proof fireplace.
This WarmthPedia provided you with a step-by-step procedure, and in case you have any questions, feel free to ask us in the comments section below.