An automatic garage door may seem like a lot of fun to kids; however, these doors can be dangerous as they open and close. You should take steps to make sure that your children understand that your garage door isn't a toy and that it is as safe as possible to avoid accidents.
Teach Kids Not to Play With the Door
It's important to make sure that your children don't mess around with the garage door's mechanism and its opener. For example, you should encourage kids to stay away from the internal part of the door. If they are touching the mechanism and someone opens the door from the outside, they may get their fingers trapped as the system starts to work.
It may seem like innocent fun to let kids play with the garage door opener, but this may cause accidents, especially if you aren't around to keep an eye on their games. If a child accidentally closes the door on another child, they're likely to get hurt, possibly seriously.
Make Sure To Keep Things Safe
Even if you allow your kids to open and close your garage door when you're parking your car, you should make sure that they can't access the door opener unsupervised. If you have spare openers in the house, make sure that you store them out of sight and out of reach. If you have an internal button that opens the door, it's a good idea to make sure that this is high enough for kids not to be able to push it.
You should also take care when you're opening and closing your automatic door when your kids are around. Make sure that they know you are using the door and pay attention to what they are doing. It only takes a second for a child to dart ahead of you to try to run into the garage when the door is closing.
Check Your Door's Safety Features
Automatic garage doors often have their own safety features. These features may come with the door or may be added to the system. If you're buying a new garage door, ask your garage doors supplier about its safety features. If you have an older existing door, look at what you can do to make its operation safer for your kids. For example, the following safety measures may be useful:
- Reverse buttons on openers: If your kids accidentally start to open or shut the door at the wrong time, a reverse button on your opener allows you to reverse the action. If your kids are old enough to understand, explain how this button works to them and tell them when they should use it.
- Door reversal: If you're buying a new garage door, make sure that the system has a door reversal system. If it does, the door will automatically stop if it meets an obstacle when it is closing.
- Infra-red detectors: You can also set up an infra-red beam system to detect if anything is in the way of the door. These systems run a beam of light at a certain height. If the beam is broken, say when a child stands in its path in the doorway, the garage door will stop closing or opening.