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The Bump Editors

How to Babyproof the House Before Baby's Arrival

You'll need to babyproof big time once the crawling kicks in, but there are some important safety checks to do before baby gets here.

There are definitely some safety checks you can do now to make sure your house is ready for baby's arrival. Ideally, get started at least three months prior to your due date, because some preparations may take time. And don’t forget, this is just round one—check out Babyproofing, Part 2 once baby starts to crawl.

General safety

• Install a UL certified carbon monoxide detector on every story of your house if you use gas or oil appliances or have an attached garage; check the batteries of any detectors you already have

• Do the same routine with smoke detectors

• Purchase a fire extinguisher, learn how to use it (and know where it is!)

• Stock your medicine cabinet or first-aid kit

• Post emergency numbers next to every phone

• Install a temperature guard on your water heater at a maximum of 120° Fahrenheit (48° Celsius)

• Get any flaking or peeling paint sealed or removed by a professional, especially if your home was built before 1978 (dust from lead paint, which was banned from residential use in that year, can be harmful if ingested)


• Put non-slip pads under all rugs

• Cover all sharp furniture edges and corners with bumpers or safety padding

• Block all open outlets with furniture or use safety plugs

• Latch closed any drawers, doors or cupboards within baby’s reach

• Cut any looped blind or curtain cords and install safety tassels and cord stops

• Always unplug and store electric appliances not in use (iron, flatiron, etc.)

• Check house and yard for poisonous plants and move out of baby’s reach

• Always store your own and visitors’ purses out of baby’s reach

• Place baby wipes and supplies within your reach from the changing table, but out of baby’s

• Put a thick rug or carpet below the changing table

• Position the crib away from windows, heaters, lamps, wall decoration and cords

• Check all nursery furniture according to our safety suggestions

• If you plan to hook a highchair to your kitchen table, be sure the table is sturdy and strong


• Install an approved rear-facing car seat in the middle of the back seat

• If the sun is strong in your area, put hanging shades on the back windows to block the rays