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Best Protection for Little Ones?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Mike592, Jul 29, 2013.

  1. Mike592

    Mike592 New Member

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    Hi everyone, we just ordered our new Hearthstone Heritage and are excited. We have a 20 month old and another on the way.

    What's the best gate or other protection to keep them away from the stove until they're old enough to learn HOT!

    :)

    Here is a picture of our hearth and the woodstove will sit up on that hearth ledge.

    [​IMG]


    I was thinking of attaching something in each side wall and running it along the carpet the whole length of that rounded hearth, so they can't climb up onto the ledge and get at the stove from the side.

    Other ideas? Brands? Styles? Something from a pet store going to work?

    Thanks.

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  2. mellow

    mellow Resident Stove Connoisseur

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    Kidco, best gates out there. You will have an onslaught of people telling you not to use one but that is your decision. I for one will not run mine without a Kidco gate.
  3. Mike592

    Mike592 New Member

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    Thanks! Do you mean I will have an "onslaught" of people telling me not to use a Kidco... or people telling me not to use one at all?

    Wife says it's mandatory we have something sturdy, at least until they're a few years older, so that question has been answered.
  4. mellow

    mellow Resident Stove Connoisseur

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    People telling you to not use a gate in general, feel free to search the forum as there have been many many threads about this topic already.
  5. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Yep... I'm one of those who chose to not bother. I grew up with fireplaces, from a very young age (birth), but my wife did not. When we moved into a house with a stove two summers ago, she was pretty insistent that we install a gate to keep our son (then about 22 months) away from it. I never got around to it (sort of on purpose), and the stove was first lit around his 2nd birthday. I figured I'd watch how much I could trust him around the stove, before making the decision on installing an ugly gate.

    I kept a close eye on him for the first several weeks, never allowing him near the stove if I wasn't within arm's reach. He really surprised all of us, how quickly he understood "hot" and "don't touch". He's four now, and no scars! At this point, we have zero concern about leaving him alone in the stove room, as he knows to stay completely off of the hearth.

    Now we have another newborn in the house, and TWO wood stoves going 24/7. We have no plans to install gates, unless we find the second kid more rammy than the first. In our case, our son is a generally cautious kid, and we felt the gate unnecessary. If our kid had been the less cautious type, maybe we would have found a gate more necessary.
  6. Mike592

    Mike592 New Member

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    Thanks everyone.

    Please note I'm requesting suggestions for good gate systems here. Not asking whether I should have one. That question has already been decided and the wife is not going to change her mind. :)
    Seanm and Joful like this.
  7. Grisu

    Grisu Minister of Fire

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  8. brakatak

    brakatak Member

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    I'll be purchasing this gate as well. thanks for the link, Grisu.
  9. lumbering on

    lumbering on Feeling the Heat

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    Thanks, I'll be getting this one too
  10. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    The best protection for little ones is to send them off to Grandmas. ;) Try not to be over protective. Kids are not glass fragile and a little risk in their lives helps them to develop better confidence.
    webby3650 and PapaDave like this.
  11. Grisu

    Grisu Minister of Fire

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    Agreed. http://www.freerangekids.com/ I read that regularly to keep myself sane. How many child-stove accidents did we actually have posts about here? I remember only one since I started posting here.
  12. rideau

    rideau Minister of Fire

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    When I was growing up, 12 brothers and sisters, the Queen Anne Victorian I grew up in had a fireplace in the living room, with a solid, heavy cast iron surround, topped by padded white leather. We've never had a fire, not even once, the 59 years we've owned the home. But I did have a brother when he was quite young, fall off the surround onto the brass log holder and cut his head open and require stitches..... Sometimes kids play with the protection, when they'd leave the hearth alone.

    I think one just has to go with what one feels is right.

    Personally, I think the risk of injury is greater as the children get older and horse around a bit. Much more apt to knock one another into the stove. Enforced house rules are important.
  13. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    I won't tell you to not worry or not get a gate. However, my wife just requested I write as if this were her answer so the following words are hers:

    When a child is growing, it is necessary to teach them about HOT. This is just part of the normal teaching process whether you burn wood or not. For instance, you start by teaching them the word hot and the way this is best done is with a cup of something hot. Such as a cup of coffee or a cup of tea. You say hot as you move the child's hand toward the cup. For sure you do not touch the cup; just let the child feel some warmth. Gradually you might get it a bit closer so they know the difference between warm and hot. Well, the very same thing can be done with a stove and it is actually easier to teach this.

    Now my words. I grew up with wood heat and I was the youngest of 4 children. My mother even used a wood cook stove. From the time I was somewhere around age 6 or 7 it became my duty to put wood in stoves while i was home along with bringing wood to the "back porch." I taught myself how to split wood when nobody was around and never got hurt. I used a sharp axe for doing this too. I never remember anyone getting burned on our stoves (2 heater stoves and one cook stove). We also many times had company come who had no experience with wood stoves. I never remember anyone getting burned.

    Fast forward a few years. When our oldest son left the US Navy they had no place to live right away so was with us for a couple months. We have only wood heat and it is a free standing stove and not an insert like yours. When they moved in with us, they had a child of 8 months and one near age 2. We took the 2 years old near the stove and said, "Hot." We then moved a bit closer and said, "Hot." The third time for sure they could feel it getting warmer and warmer as we said, "Hot." End of lesson and lesson was given exactly one time. We never had a problem with either child nor was there any close calls.

    I can understand the uncertainty and fear of some so understand their need. But I have to say we never felt the need. Good luck with your gate and may the stove serve you well.
  14. lumbering on

    lumbering on Feeling the Heat

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    I have every intention of teaching the little guy to stay clear of the hot stove.

    But kids can be hyper, impulsive, and unpredictable. For the same reason I put the hot boiling pots on the back burners, have a scald guard on the bath faucet, make them wear a life jacket, and don't leave the gun loaded on the kitchen table, (all despite lots and lots of safety instruction), it's just one extra barrier between impulse and disaster.

    That and my wife won't let me light the stove without it. Maybe we should trust that maternal protective instinct.
    firefighterjake and Joful like this.
  15. webby3650

    webby3650 Master of Fire

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    Both my kids were raised with a stove in the middle of the house, no one has ever been burned but me. In my last house they could even walk all the way around it. It was never a problem.
  16. fox9988

    fox9988 Minister of Fire

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    A hot stove can be felt from 5 ft away, it's not like a hot pan. My kids were naturally wary.
  17. drewmo

    drewmo Feeling the Heat

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    Perhaps a bit heavy on the theatrics, to teach our boy once he was mobile that the stove was hot and dangerous, I pretended to touch it, then dropped to the ground howling. He got it and never willingly went for the stove. He did trip once and grazed the stove on his way down. Fast forward a couple years and a new house and an additional child, we do protect our insert, which happens to reside in the play room. (Good planning from great parents.) The protection is not only for the kids, but also for all the random toys that could find their way near the stove.

    edit: taking a closer look at OP's hearth (very beautiful, btw), I'd definitely find a way to protect the kiddos from the stone edge. That's always been my biggest fear, those sharp edges. And, while maybe not the best recommendation, we picked up the cheapest grate we could find at Box DIY to protect our stove.
  18. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Nothing wrong with that. While I did not feel it necessary for our situation, I can certainly understand why some feel it is necessary.

    In our case, I am paranoid about things like pans on the stovetop, but felt any brush with the stove would likely be more an uncomfortable lesson than a severe disaster. I'm honestly much more worried about a kid making it into the garage, while we're backing a car in or out.
    webby3650 likes this.
  19. webby3650

    webby3650 Master of Fire

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    I agree. Accidents do happen, I'm sure it's better to have it and not need it than wish you had done it!
    Seanm likes this.
  20. tomahawk

    tomahawk Member

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    I took 3 of the cheap gates they sell at Walmart and screwed them together - worked great, looks so-so. Cost me $30 to make, kept the kids safe and can't tell it was there now that I took it down. The youngest is 2 now so it's time to make sure he listens to dad.
  21. fire_man

    fire_man Minister of Fire

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    The gate also comes in handy for not just your own kids, but all their little play-buddies that might visit. They might not be so used to a wood stove. As others said, it also protects from those toys that get flinged around.
    Joful likes this.
  22. DJB

    DJB New Member

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  23. teutonicking

    teutonicking Feeling the Heat

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    What's the best gate or other protection to keep them away from the stove until they're old enough to learn HOT!

    We never used a gate but have made staying away from the stove the #1 rule in our house. We also created a "buffer zone" around the stove--the kids (4 and 6 now) are not allowed to:

    (1) play on the hearth
    (2) play on the hardwood floor (about two feet nearest the stove); and
    (3) are not allowed to run or play near the stove, or to throw balls or anything in the direction of the stove.

    So far this has been pretty effective.
  24. SmokinDiesel

    SmokinDiesel New Member

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    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000058DJG

    This is the one we have and love it . Being that your hearth is rounded this one would fit nicely . Its pretty sturdy actually and looks nice.
  25. dougstove

    dougstove Member

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    A thought: Will the gate be a temptation for climbing?

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