It's summer and the kids are home from school! Chances are your little ones (along with half the neighborhood!) are running in and out of the garage all day long getting their bikes out, putting their bikes back in, grabbing basketballs to play with or just coming and going as kids are wont to do when the weather is fine. Now is the perfect time to sit your kids down and reemphasize the importance of being safe around garage doors. Here are some summertime tips for garage door safety that are important to remember both for kids and adults too.
- Never (ever!) stand, run or walk under a garage door while it is moving. Too many kids like to "play chicken" with automatic garage doors in the summer and it's a game that could result in serious injury.
- If you have a programmable touchpad entry option, be sure to change the code often and instill in your children the importance of keeping that code a family secret.
- To keep your kids extra safe, make sure your automatic door has a reversing feature which sends the door back up if it comes into contact with an object (or person). This tip is for homeowners whose doors were installed before 1993: today's modern doors are all required to have this feature. If yours doesn't, now is the time to replace your old door.
- Before heavy summer use begins, check your reversing mechanism to make sure it's in proper working order by placing a two by four piece of wood in your door's path. If the door does not stop and automatically reverse course, call a service technician right away to have it repaired. Wise homeowners will do such a test monthly during peak usage months for extra security and peace of mind.
- Teach kids to keep their eyes on the door while it is in operation until it closes completely. If anything is in the way of its course the reversing mechanism will kick in and the door will remain wide open, seriously compromising the security of both the family in the house and the contents stored in the garage.
- Impress on your children the fact that a garage door is a tool, not a toy. They should never play with the remote control or wall-mounted push button; or, if you have a manually operated door, they should never fling the door open or shut as this might cause the door to go off track and fall.
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