How to baby proof and add wall anchors to keep furniture from tipping over onto your climbing baby, toddler, or child.
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Originally posted March 24, 2013. Updated August 11, 2020 after many years of babyproofing for three adventurous little boys.
My husband hates installing these things, but all of my kids LOVED to climb. My first son was pretty clever about it, pulling out drawers to step on like a ladder to get to the top.
Bureaus and other furniture are a huge risk around kids like him because they WILL tip onto your child, something that can obviously cause severe injury or death.
I find the time it takes to install baby proofing items is worth it for peace of mind, especially in areas like their bedroom or playroom where you might want to let them play unsupervised.
It’s nice to know you can let them play in their room for a few minutes in the morning without hearing a crash in the other room.
Table of contents
Did you ever have furniture fall on you as a kid? I did, including when I was wayyyyy too old to be tipping it over. I still remember watching TV and putting my feet up on my mom’s glass-front music player/radio. It came down on me MORE than once. Fortunately, I survived (and didn’t break her furniture).
Types of Wall Anchors for Furniture
Some furniture will come with wall anchors, but if you buy used furniture then you may not get those items. Our Costco master bedroom furniture is really heavy and came with heavy duty metal wall anchors.
This is a metal wall anchor that came with our furniture set.
Most IKEA products seem to come with anchors now as well, as there have been quite a few deaths from furniture falling.
There’s a lot of different types of these anchors and I was excited about how easy everything was to move with this type of bracket. I read through a ton of reviews and this was the one feature that sold me. It’s great for moving furniture to vacuum or get an item that dropped. Seeing EVERYTHING drops behind the changing table, it’s been useful.
Otherwise they all really do the same job.
It’s a bit hard to reach behind so I used pliers (I hope that’s what these are, haha) and squeezed the release, and pulled the end loose. Very simple! You can do it by squeezing with your fingers, but it’s not as easy.
Buy Tip Proof Wall Anchors for Furniture
There’s a few different types of wall anchors that you can buy. Here’s a few that you might like.
How to Install Wall Anchors for Furniture
First, for those of you who prefer video, this is a tutorial for you. If you want photos and instructions, keep scrolling.
First, you need to find the stud that is located behind your furniture. Studs are the 2x4s (or other sizes, depending on the home) in the walls; insulation and wiring go between them.
Studs, depending on when your home was built and state rules, will be a particular distance apart. They’re closer together on exterior walls than interior walls.
I use my stud finder to locate the stud and then draw a mark on that spot.
The screws that you get in the furniture anchor kits are Phillips head screws. While Phillips is the standard for screw heads and very common, star and square shaped bits/screws are less prone to stripping.
Stripping is what happens when you screw something in then the screw won’t turn anymore; the metal in the X shape on the screw head wore down/broke off, giving your bit nothing to snag on.
You can replace the screws with a better quality screw, but you can also just avoid stripping the screws by pre-drilling your holes. You need a drill bit that’s SMALLER than your screw size… I can’t tell you what size you’ll need because each kit might have a different size.
Pre-drill your hole where you marked the stud, as well as the closest spot on the furniture.
Once the holes are predrilled, you can screw the plastic plates into that area. The longer screw is for the wall. The shorter screws are to attach the plastic bracket to the furniture piece. The zip tie thingy feeds through the holds in both brackets, then you call pull the tie tight.
Here are some photos from the original furniture/wall. I’ve updated the photos and blog post since we’ve moved! Turns out kids #2 and #3 are equally as adventurous as kid #1.
Other Baby Proofing Supplies that I Recommend
These outlet covers snap closed when a plug is pulled out (Godric’s favorite thing to do).
I also put the regular plug covers in them because he’s smart enough to try to open the sliding “doors” to the cover so I’m hoping repeated failure will bore him and he will move on to better tasks.
My only complaint with these is that the covers don’t completely cover the area that the old covers did… this was true at both our condo and house. But I tested and I don’t think it’s possible to squeeze a finger inside.
We’ve had to do a ridiculous number of babyproofing projects for our kids.
Here’s a good list of blog posts I’ve written on the topic:
- Sliding Glass Door Babyproofing
- Sliding Glass Door Babyproofing #2
- How to Babyproof a Sewing Room
- DIY Door Knob Babyproofing
- How to Add a Baby Gate to the Banister (without making holes)
- DIY Cord Keeper for blinds
- How to Install a Potty Training Toilet Seat
You may also like my blog post about making children’s masks with breakaway straps!
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