When my husband and I moved into our new house that we had just built, we didnt think about what problem we were going to soon come across with our son just learning how to walk and crawl. We were able to install child safety gates at the bottom and top of the staircase but we didnt know how to block our son from getting out of the family room into the kitchen and away from the dog room. I searched everywhere and came across the Summer Infant 07160 Super Wide Custom Fit Gate. This child safety gate was the answer to our problem.
Recommend this product?
Our family room has two extremely wide openings. No standard child safety gate would be long enough to fit the openings. One of the openings is 13 feet long and the other is 9 feet long. I needed to buy two of these safety gates. I used one and half for the wide opening and half for the other opening. This worked great. I felt such relief once we installed the gates and my son was safely playing in the family room. I didnt have to worry about him wandering into the kitchen and getting hurt.
Installation of the gates is another story, not so easy. You need to find a stud in the wall when installing the gates. My husband needed to use concrete dowels and screws (not the ones that come included). If he just used those, my son would have been able to push the gate right out of the wall. However, even after installing the gates with the concrete screws, my 115 pound dog walked right into the gate and almost ripped it right out of the wall. Needless to say, we did major damage to our brand new walls.
After almost two years of having the gates up, I was jumping for joy when my son was old enough to be careful in the kitchen and near the dog room. The reason I was happy to take the gates down was that they were really hard to operate. Opening and closing them was not easy. Actually, one gate was easier to operate than the other. I think it had something to do with the way the gates were installed. They need a certain amount of play and if you dont install them correctly, the lock on the actual door of the gate wont work properly.
I did like the color of the gates though. They are a tannish brown color and blending in nicely with my family room furniture. They have a mesh material so if your child puts his/her face up against the gate, (which they all do at one time), you dont have to worry about them suffocating.
Another thing I did not like about the gates was the foot stands they rested in. I always knocked into them and my son would try to take them out and play with them. They worked well in keeping the gate in place, but were in the way at the same time.
I remember paying a lot of money for these gates at Babies R Us. They ran me about $100 per gate. In the end it was worth every penny to ensure my sons safety. They are now in the garage until I need them again.
In order to repair the damage from the installation we needed to replaster the holes they made in the wall. Then we had to repaint. You can still see the spots where the screws were. I dont think our brand new walls will really ever be the same. Overall, I do recommend the gates if you need to close in a wide opening. I am just not sure they are the made from the best materials. They could have been a little stronger.