A handful of common tools and materials will make installation a breeze. Here’s what to look for.
Anchoring Kit Basics
Anchoring furniture and TVs should be a core part of your childproofing plan. Preventing tip-overs starts with picking the right kit.
What Are Kits Called?
Kits have a number of names – anchoring kits, anti-tip kits, furniture restraints, tethering kits, safety straps… the important thing is to make sure the kit contains the parts you need.
If you’re unsure, read the packaging or the item’s description online to double-check that you are looking at the right kit.
Kits should have mounting brackets or plates, and a connecting strap. Generally, the brackets are metal or thick plastic, and the strap is either heavy nylon or braided steel. These quality materials ensure that everything is secure. If the kit you’re looking at feels flimsy, consider selecting a different one.
Frequently, kits include the right screws for the job, making it even easier. If the one you’re looking at doesn’t include screws, make sure to ask your local hardware store about the right type for the surface you’re anchoring to.
How Does It Work?
One set of brackets or plates gets attached to the object you’re securing, and one set gets anchored to the wall. The strap connects the two so that the object uses the strength of the wall to keep from tipping over and hurting someone.
Is It Expensive?
Nope! Almost all of them are under $20, and a lot of great ones cost less than $10.
How Many Should I Get?
The kit you pick up should give you instructions on how many straps are required for your furniture. Usually two straps are used to make furniture more secure.
When Should I Install It?
Right away. It’s easy to put it on a to-do list only to realize too late that you still haven’t installed it. Take a few minutes today (or the day the furniture/TV arrives) and install the anchors.
Supplies You’ll Need
For installing into drywall and plaster, you’ll need an anchor kit, a stud finder, a pencil, a drill, drill bits, drywall screws, and a screwdriver.
For installing into brick, you’ll need an anchor kit, a masonry bit, a heavy-duty hammer drill, concrete screw anchors, and an impact driver.
Remember that many hardware and home improvement stores rent drills if you prefer not to buy one.
In general, you’ll want a drill bit that’s the same size as the shaft of the screw minus the threads. If you press the drill bit and the screw up against each other and hold them up to the light, it’s easier to see if the size is right.
Where to Buy Before buying one, check to see if your new furniture or TV came with an anchoring kit.
You can find kits locally at hardware stores, major home improvement stores, and mass-market retailers.
If you bought your TV at an electronics store, it’s likely that they sell the anti-tip kit you need.
Kits can also be easily purchased online. When you’re searching, try terms like “anti-tip kit” along with what you’re trying to anchor (“furniture anti-tip kit” or “tv anti-tip kit”) to get to the right type.
Kits for TVsThere are a few great ways to prevent your TV from tipping over.
Attaching Flat-Screen TVs to the Wall
Mounting flat-screen TVs to the wall is a great way to minimize a tip-over risk.
Standard TV wall mounts will do the trick, no anti-tip kit needed.
Securing Flat-Screen TVs to Furniture
If you want to place your flat-screen TV on a piece of furniture instead, make sure you use furniture designed to hold a television, like a TV stand or media center.
Then, anchor the TV to the wall, or to the piece of furniture itself.
Flat-screens typically come with threaded holes on the back of the TV for mounting. Check the back of the unit to confirm that yours does. When checking, you should look for a TV anti-tip kit that has a screw hole at the end of the strap. This might be drilled through a small plate, or look like a reinforced ring in the strap.
Flat-screens typically have threaded holes on the back to make mounting easy. You can use these to attach the wall mount or straps.
DEEPER TVs and CRTs
For deeper TVs, you may need to use a different type of mounting strap if no mounting holes exist. Check the back of your TV to make sure, then consult your local hardware store on the best kit options.
Kits for FurnitureHeavy and wide furniture can still tip over. And if it does tip, it can be a disaster.
When you’re looking at anchoring kits for these items, make sure to read the specifications to see if they can hold more pounds than your piece of furniture weighs.
We’ll cover how to install the brackets in the next section.
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