What are the best types of windows to have in a home with small children? How often should family fire drills be held? What type of glass should you have in windows to help prevent noise penetration and discourage intruders? Whether you’re building a new home or renovating a cherished older home, there’s a lot to think about. Some of the most important tips are included below.
Practice safety drills regularly. Small children tend to “hide” from fire, so make sure children are familiar with escape routes and know how to move quickly out of the home.
For homes with bedrooms on second floors or higher, make sure safety escape chain ladders are under the bed in every room. Practice operating the window with older children and show them how to install chain ladders.
Keep furniture (including cribs), or anything children can climb, away from windows.
If you live in an area prone to active children or potential crime, order windows with tempered safety glass—at least for the first floor of the home. Two panes of glass are adhered to a durable plastic interlayer, much like a car windshield. So, if a stray baseball hits a window, the glass will shatter, but broken pieces remain adhered to the interlayer, preventing glass fallout inside the home. The plastic interlayer is also puncture-resistant, frustrating potential intruders.
Remember that window screens are designed only to keep insects outside – they will not support the weight of a child or family pet.
Looking to protect your home from harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays? Request Low E glass in your windows to reduce fading of carpets, furniture and window treatments due to the sun’s harsh rays.
When windows are opened for ventilation, only open windows that young children cannot reach. Simonton offers ventilation locks that allow the window to be partially opened for fresh air while remaining securely locked.
Opening second floor windows can present a greater risk to children and pets. In these areas of the home, consider Simonton Double Hung windows, which have top sash that open down while the bottom sash (closest to the floor) remain closed.
Before ordering windows, make sure to examine the unit’s locking system and operations. Multi-point locks provide more protection against intruders and make it more difficult for curious young children to operate.
If you need to use window guards on the interior of your windows, make sure they are operable and can be easily removed. Practice detaching the guards with children in case they need to exit through a window in an emergency.