Home Depot Store Associate, Chicago, IL
A couple I met in the store recently needed to invest in some new blinds after their three kids’ rough-housing had damaged several of their old ones. The conversation reminded me of the importance of selecting blinds that are safe for use in a house full of young children.
Am I Safe Already?
That all depends on what type of treatments you currently have for your windows and how old they are. As of 2001, safety regulations for all blinds sold and produced in the U.S. went through a major overhaul. Any window treatments made today are much different than their older counterparts. One major difference is in the structure of their pull cords.
You’ll notice that on the older style, the cords form a loop where they meet at the tassel. This became a concern for smaller children, as it was a possible strangulation risk. All newer cords come independent of each other with individual tassels. Another risk are cord-loop type blinds that are common with roller, roman, or woven type shades. With these types, make sure they are anchored up high with a tie-down device or pulley.
What if I have these types of blinds and I can’t afford new ones?
There is a solution for that as well. The Window Treatment Safety Council is prepared to help out families with older blinds. They’ll not only provide customers with free retro-fitting kits, but they also provide easy to follow instructions on how to use them on your treatments.
What type of blinds should I look for when purchasing new ones?
Although all blinds produced now have built-in safety measures, there are still certain “safety-conscious” features to look out for:
Avoid Aluminum or Metallic type blinds
While the cords may not pose as much of a risk any longer, they do still pose the threat of a nasty cut due to sharp edges on the blinds, especially if you have them cut-down and they are not a manufactured edge. If you must have these type of blinds, make sure to keep them high enough so that children can’t reach any of the slats.
Cordless is your friend
Far and wide, this is the best type of blind you can opt for. Not only are these much safer for children, with the exclusion of any type of lift cords, but they also don’t require any type of extra safety modifications on your part. You can find cordless designs most commonly on cellular type blinds, as well as on real wood and roman shades.
If you have any type of concerns with children and blind safety, please mention them to your local store associate when purchasing blinds and we can make sure to find you the perfect fit for your home that will keep everyone safe and happy. Also, visit us at homedepot.com for our wide selection of blinds and other window treatments.
Find Jay as “AskMrJay” on http://community.homedepot.com.