The best furniture anchors will give you peace of mind, but most importantly, keep Baby safe. But first off: I know the baby books might tell you to start babyproofing your house with furniture anchors, baby gates, sturdy playpens, and fiddly little safety locks the day after you find out you’re pregnant, but not every aspect of babyproofing is quite so urgent. First of all, ain’t nobody got time for that when you’re spending all morning barfing. Second of all, you really don’t want to spend a solid year struggling to get into your own pantry and fighting with the child safety locks. Especially while your kid is still in utero, or is out but moves less than a sloth. Once your child has learned to roll and is almost ready to start cruising, however, it’s officially time to spend a weekend with your toolbox and lock everything down.
All that said, it’s not a bad idea to stock up on childproofing supplies to have them on hand, just in case. One babyproofing precaution you can (and should) take early on — that won’t impact the ease of daily life before your LO is mobile — is anchoring down your furniture. I’m talking, all the sofas, dressers, bookshelves (including the one in the nursery), the baby’s crib, TVs, hutches, and anything else that’s top-heavy and could injure your mini-monkey.
When should you babyproof your home?
Rick Leviton, founder of Precious Baby Protectors and Childproofing Advisor at YouthfulHome.com, advises locking down early on. “You should anchor your furniture before bringing your baby home from the hospital,” he confirms. “And do this in every room in your house, not just the baby’s room. A toddler can go out of your sight in an instant and be in trouble before you can react.”
What are the best kinds of furniture anchors?
As far as the most durable materials, Levitonm says, “Make sure that the straps are made of vinyl webbing or braided metal cable. The screws used to attach to the wall should be 2-inch long wood screws. If the kit you have uses smaller generic screws, replace them with long wood screws. You should locate the closest stud in the wall and screw into that instead of using toggles or drywall anchors.” While there are some popular plastic versions out there (they look and work almost like zip ties), the pro advises against using plastic straps or screws.
How do you anchor furniture to a wall?
While your best bet is using a kit that comes with instructions (below) or even enlisting the help of an expert, Levitonm shares a few general installation tips: “Use the thickest part of the furniture as high up as possible,” he says. “Don’t place heavy items on upper furniture shelves or on top of furniture. If you’ve put a heavy appliance such as a TV on top of furniture, anchor the TV as well. If your walls are brick or plaster, you should hire a person who knows how to securely attach the straps to those materials.”
Finally, he adds to consider anchoring furniture in any home where your soon-to-be toddler will spend a lot of time — especially in the homes of older residents. “Grandparents should [anchor furniture], too. It’s not only protecting their grandchildren, it’s protecting them as well. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, more than 15,000 people are injured by falling furniture each year — many of them are grownups.”
The sad truth is, every 30 minutes a child goes to the ER for furniture tipping injuries, dozens of which are fatal each year. So let’s keep your kiddo safe and keep you from having a heart attack every time they crawl near the TV.
Best Furniture Anchors
Let’s start with the best bang for your buck, shall we? It’s hard to go wrong with roughly $1/anchor, especially if you have a lot of furniture in your house that needs anchoring. And pretty much everyone who’s ever tried to undo a ziptie has been convinced of its durability. However, it is important to note that products like these with plastic mounting brackets, plastic zip ties, cotton straps, and other less-sturdy materials do need extra observation. They are great in a pinch since it’s better than nothing, and if you use a couple on a single piece, it increases the tensile strength. But they’re not as strong as the metal or steel cable products I’ll get into that later, but if you go with these temporarily, be sure to periodically check them to make sure they’re still firmly attached. (Note: You probably shouldn’t — er — put your kid in a drawer, either.)
Safety 1st is clearly one of the best brands out there, and I’m sure I’m not the only one who already has some of their products in my home. This style of furniture anchor– where you screw one bracket to the furniture and one to a wall with a strap in between– is great for customization. This way, you can adjust the slack on the straps to your comfort level. They might require tightening every so often, so keep an eye on these anchors, too.
Moving on to the Ol’ Reliable of the furniture anchor world, we have L brackets! These guys can be used to screw down furniture to the floor or at the top to the wall, depending on the furniture’s shape and what’s easier. As a bonus, if you don’t have too many pieces of furniture to secure, now you’ll have a few extra L brackets to hang shelves with! Because trust me, you’re going to wish you had more shelves to keep things up high and out of reach when your drunken sailor starts holding onto everything to walk around.
I’ll admit, I was a little skeptical of these at first. It’s adhesive with velcro for goodness sake. How strong could it be? Um, pretty strong. They’re a one-use-only kind of product, and once you’ve attached the sticky bits, they’re not coming off. Apparently, the only way to maybe get them off your TV or furniture (like if you have to move) is to heat up the adhesive with a blowdryer and scrape the thing off. On the upside, however, it doesn’t require any drilling holes in either your furniture or walls!
Best Furniture Wall Anchors
I know it’s not possible for everyone to fully mount their TV, but it’s definitely safer than simply anchoring the TV to a wall or TV stand. Plus, you won’t have to yell at your kid to stop touching the TV because they think it’s a tablet any more! This is the one I have personally and I LOVE it. It was super easy to hang up, it can pivot on a hinge to accommodate different angles around your room, and I haven’t had a single issue with it. Also, 28,000+ other people seem to agree with me, because it has a solid 4.8-star rating with over 25,000 reviews.
Now we’re really breaking out the big guns. A single one of the furniture anchors in this pack can withstand 400lbs of weight, which definitely includes your child, you, and all pets except Clifford the Big Red Dog. It also is made of all metal pieces for total peace of mind. One reviewer described how the professional childproofer they worked with recommends this style of furniture anchors above all others due to its durable materials, longer screws, and reinforced edges on the straps. (And yes, I was today years old when I learned that professional childproofers are a thing.)
This is yet another style of furniture wall anchor, though its installation is largely the same as all the others. Grab a stud finder to make sure you’re attaching the furniture to the strongest part of the wall, and screw the brackets in. Ta-da. (If you have brick, stone, plaster, or other irregular wall types, Consumer Reports has a guide on how to anchor furniture to any kind of wall.)
This Syosin anchor is made of braided steel and also holds up to 40 lbs. The only difference in use between this one and the Family Care anchor above is that this one will cause your bookshelf, dresser, or whatever to stick out a tiny bit from the wall. That’s no biggie though, especially if it could mean saving your child’s life.
Finally, we come to the Quakehold anchor. Though this is marketed as an anchor kit to withstand earthquakes, these products are commonly used for babyproofing & hold up just as well. This guy decided to buy the Quakehold and another, unnamed style of furniture anchor and had rave things to say about this product over the competition.