Window Safety Locks

Window safety locks will help prevent your baby or child from accident falls that could cause injury or worse.  All little ones are curious by nature and the allure of what's outside can be irresistible for some children and while doors are locked they may look for a way outside through a convenient window. 

window safety locks

Part of a complete baby proofing plan is to ensure that windows are secure from the inside.  Most windows have built in locking devices or screens to prevent intruders and insects from entering your home but they won't stop your little adventurers from getting out.  

A locking device will add safety and provide peace of mind with the added bonus of providing increased security for your home.  A lock combined with a top rated home security system will give you the utmost in security for your home and loved ones. 

We'll take a look at the different styles of windows you might have in your home and help you with the best way to make them safe.  In most cases a simple little device will be adequate to prevent a child from opening the window from the inside but some windows might require some creativity on your part.  There are several window safety locks available with each one having it's own unique advantages and disadvantages.


Window Baby Proofing Assessment

1. The first thing you should do is check all windows for existing locking devices because it's possible they are already baby and child proof.  Test the locking mechanism and determine if a child will be able to operate it on their own.  

Check to see if the lock is elevated and out of reach where a child can't reach it as long as the lock is always engaged it will act as a safety locking device. 

2. Determine how far the window opens.  If it opens more than 4 inches a baby or small child could fit through and fall.  

3. It's important to remember that children are capable of removing screens and they should not be relied on a safety barrier.

4. Is there any furniture or any accessories that will allow your child to reach a window - if this is the case consider rearranging furniture.

5. Cords, curtains or drapes can pose a safety hazard and should be made safe by either removing curtains or by using a cord shortener that can keep cords up and out of your child's reach.  

After taking a look at the windows around your home the next step is to determine the style of window safety locks you require.


Common Window Styles

There are a few common window styles that you will find in most homes in North America.  Most window safety locks are designed specifically for a certain type of window so it's important to know your windows before shopping for a safety lock.  

We'll go through each window design and provide the recommended window safety locks below that should be used as the best safety option for your loved ones. 


common window styles


Hung Sliding Windows

Hung sliding windows are the most popular window and are available in both single and double hung varieties.  They function by sliding a portion of the window up or down and are usually locked with a hinge device that slides into a locking portal. 

This style of window can be baby proofed by using any of the following:

  • Restrictor cable lock
  • Guard bars
  • Security bar
  • Wedge lock
  • Stopper


Casement Windows

Casement windows open outward by using a lever or crank mechanism.  In some cases the window may open to under the 4 inch recommendation and will not need a safety lock but if it doesn't - it should be baby proofed. 

They are difficult to apply window safety locks and will require some ingenuity on your part.  It will come down to what you prefer personally depending on looks, function and of course overall safety. 

You might want to consider removing the crank or lever completely as a safety measure with the downside of not being able to use the window but you might not be able to get away from this option. 

You might also want to consider the following:

  • Restrictor cable lock


Horizontal Sliding Windows

A horizontal sliding window is a window that slides back and forth along the rail. One or more sections may be moveable so it's important to make sure you check both sides if there are multiple sections.  They are locked either by a central hinge or a clip on the inside of the window frame. 

This style of window is probably the easiest to secure against babies and children and the following can be used:

  • Restrictor Cable Lock
  • Guard Bars
  • Security Bar
  • Wedge Lock
  • Stopper


Awning and Hopper Windows

Both awning and hopper windows consist of a pain section and usually a lower portion that opens on a hinge either outward (awning) or inward (hopper).  This design presents a hazard if the window opens beyond 5 inches at it's widest opening.  

The best way to baby proof these style of windows is to use a cable that will restrict the amount of space when the window opens.  The added benefit of this device is that you can still use the window for air circulation and to get some fresh air in your home while rendering it safe for your child. 

We recommend the following safety device:

  • Restrictor cable lock


Best Window Safety Locks

After you have taken a look at the windows in your home it's time to decide which style of locking device you want to use.  Each style has its advantages and disadvantage so it's worth taking a minute to find the best window safety locks for your unique window in your home. 

If you have custom windows or a design that isn't listed above you might have to be creative but you should find something that fits your needs. 

  1. Restrictor cable lock
  2. Guard bars
  3. Security bar
  4. Wedge lock
  5. Stopper
  6. Window Cord Wrap


1. Window Restrictor Cable Lock

The window restrictor cable lock is at the top of the list because it works while allowing full function of the window.  It's versatile, easy to use and works on any window that opens inward or outward regardless of the opening mechanics. 

One end of the cable attaches to the window frame and the other to the swinging portion of the window.  They are attached with self-piercing screws so they can be fastened to most materials including wood, aluminum, steel and uPVC.

It's important to test how far the window opens before fastening as the gap should not exceed 4 inches. 

The cable is locked into the locking device and can be opened by using the supplied key.  If you are purchasing multiple units you can use the same key for each lock.  It's good idea to keep a back up key stored safely away in case you lose it. 

window restrictor cable lock

Pros

  • Safe and secure
  • Easy to use
  • Allows for full functioning of the window
  • Increased home security from intruders

Cons

  • It does require screwing and some installation that will leave marks if it's ever removed

Most window restrictor cable locks can withstand forces upwards of 100 kg so they should be more than enough to keep an adventurous child safely inside. 


2. Window Guard Bars

Window guard bars are arguably the most secure preventative measure you can take when baby proofing your windows.  The downside is that they require sometimes tricky installation and for some parents they aren't very visually appealing. 

There are different sizes available and can be found to fit most hung and awning style windows that have an in-set frame.  They attach to each side of the frame and the bars run across the length of the window providing both child and baby safety as well as intruder security. 

Look for a model that has swinging bars that can be opened in the case of an emergency or for cleaning.  This option makes them a bit more versatile and safe for use in your home. 

window guard bar

Pros

  • Very safe for babies and children
  • Adds security to your home

Cons

  • Can be tricky to install and require screwing
  • Visually not very appealing
  • Will leave marks when removed

This style of window safety locks is the most secure and highly recommend for second story or higher windows to keep children safe.  The swing open option is a must for added versatility.  Various styles have limitations on the side of window they will fit so be sure to measure your windows and check for compatibility before purchasing. 


3. Window Security Bar

A window security bar is a versatile and sturdy window safety locks device that should be considered for any sliding window and door for the ultimate in safety and security.  They work by installing inside the frame and prevent closing or opening unless unless the pin is removed by an adult. 

This device is semi-permanent and will render the window or door inoperable when it is engaged.  This option might not be appealing because of that fact but in some cases this is the only option and it will get the job done. 

window security bar

Pros

  • Very secure
  • Provides added home security
  • Can be used for unique and custom windows

Cons

  • Window and door can't be operated while it's engaged
  • Pin could possibly be removed by a child 

Window safety locks and devices can be a hassle to use and operate but in some circumstances you need to use some creativity.  This device isn't pretty and can be tedious to engage and remove constantly but can solve some unique window child proofing challenges. 


4. Window Wedge Lock

The wedge lock is a reliable safety device for all types of sliding windows if it's installed correctly.  The wedge attaches to a velcro strip that is installed on the sliding rail of the window.  It will vary depending on your window but you should set the window to open no further than 4 inches. 

This device will not stand up to extreme force since it is limited by the strength of the velcro.  It could also be removed quite easily by a child and should be installed out of reach at the top of the window. 

If your child is old enough that you think they may be able to open the window with enough force to bypass this device don't use it.  You should always test it out before relying on it as a safety device. 

window wedge lock

Pros

  • Easy to install
  • No hardware or drilling required
  • Tidy appearance
  • Variable spacing

Cons

  • Possible for a strong child to overcome
  • Needs to be installed out of reach of children otherwise it should not be used as a safety device 
  • Velcro may become worn with extended use

This window safety locks option is a decent option for any style of sliding window but it's important to test out its resilience to force on the window and install it out of reach of your baby or child because it can be removed very easily. 


5. Window Stopper

The window stopper is a handy little device designed for babies and is not recommended for children because it can be easily removed.  It uses suction to attach to a window pane and can be set at any desired location to limit the amount the window opens. 

This device can be removed by older children and should not be relied as a safety device for older children. 

If you are able to install this device out of reach of children it can be a very simple and easy solution for baby proofing.  Always test the suction to ensure that it will withstand applied pressure.  Ensure that the window is clean before installing and test periodically if the window is subject to changes in weather conditions. 

window stopper

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Versatile
  • Easy to install and remove
  • No hardware or screwing needed

Cons

  • Not recommended for older children if it can be reached
  • Suction may become lessened on dirty windows or windows subject to temperature fluctuations

If you want a quick remedy this device can be used effectively as a window safety locks option if it's used for babies or children that can't reach the device.  It's important to remember that the window should be set to not open more than 4 inches otherwise a baby or small child could fit through and sustain injury or worse.


6. Window Cord Wrap

A window cord wrap or wind-up device will help keep blind cords safely up and out of reach of your baby and children.  A hanging cord can become a serious strangulation hazard if your child plays with the cord.  It's important to always keep cords out of reach of children as cords tend to be prevalent near beds and cribs. 

A simple device to wrap cords around is recommended over other "wind-ups" or fancy devices.  It's better to keep it simple so you can be sure the cords are held and your child's safety is ensured. 

blind cord wrap

Pros

  • Simple to use
  • Easy to install
  • Affordable
  • Small and lightweight

Cons

  • Requires screwing into wall 
  • Appearance may bother some parents
  • Some cheaper models may break over time

A cord wrap is a cheap and effective way to ensure that cords can never be reached by your children.  This device is a good example of a very affordable and easy to install safety measure will prevent injuries and in some cases death in children from strangulation. 


Tips and Advice

Window safety locks are available in all sorts of shapes and sizes and should be only part of your overall baby home safety and baby proofing.  There is no substitute for diligent adult supervision and education and it's important to talk to children about the dangers associated with windows.

A few important things you should keep in mind when baby proofing the windows in your home:

  • Keep the window sill clear of debris 
  • Keep furniture and other household items away from windows
  • Keep cords and other strangulation hazards out of reach 

We hope this page on window safety locks was informative but if you have any questions you can contact us and we will respond as soon as possible with answers to your comments or questions. 


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