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Keep the kids and furniture safe and secure; Home Improvements; Babies and toddlers love a good climb. Builder and Bake Off star Richard Burr shows you how to fix tall or heavy items to walls to keep little ones out of danger.

1 MAKE A BRACKET Use L-brackets for fixing wardrobes or chests of drawers to walls. Often, furniture will come with brackets included but if not, you can get an L-shaped corner bracket from any ironmongery or DIY store. Try B&Q's silver zinc-effect mild steel corner brace brackets (PS7.74 for a pack of 20). They may also be referred to by a few different terms, such as L-bracket, corner bracket or corner brace. Some will come with screws included, otherwise ask for help where you're buying it to make sure you get the right sized screws to go with your bracket.

2GET RIGHT TOOLS FOR THE JOB For this project, you'll need an electric drill with 5.5mm masonry drill bit and a Phillips screw head, screws, a Phillips screwdriver, a pencil, a step ladder, spirit level and Rawlplugs (the red ones) if it's going to be attached to a brick wall. First, you need to establish whether the wall you're fixing it to is brick usually an outside or party wall of your home) or if it's stud wall (an internal wall that sounds hollow when you knock on it). Next, you'll need a drill. I use a Dewalt cordless drill for a lot of work and my version will set you back a few quid, but their DIY models are also great. For under PS100 you can pick up a fantastic Dewalt cordless drill for all your household needs.

3 MAKE SURE WARDROBE IS LEVEL BEFORE FIXING TO BRICK WALL For added security, I use two brackets, one at each end. Push wardrobe as far back against skirting as it will go. If it still tilts forward, prop up front legs with a bit of plywood under each leg, or folded cardboard. Use spirit level to check top of wardrobe is level. The back of wardrobe should be the depth of the skirting board away from the wall. Put bracket in position and draw shape of the hole onto wall. When you move the bracket away, draw a cross through the circle, so you can still see where the centre is as you drill hole. Set drill to high-speed hammer setting. You don't need to drill into the wall to the full depth of your drill-bit, only as deep as the Rawlplug, plus around 5mm extra. Mark this on your drill-bit by wrapping tape around it so you know when to stop. When you've drilled holes, insert Rawlplugs, put bracket in place and, with your screwdriver, secure brackets to the wall. Then screw down into top of your wardrobe using cordless drill on screwdriver setting, or do this by hand.

4 FOR A STUD WALL, FIND THE WOODEN STUDS FOR A STRONGER FIX In most modern homes, a stud wall is plasterboard fixed to a wooden frame, then plastered over. If you were to follow the instructions above and drill into plasterboard, this wouldn't give you a strong enough fixing. Instead, you need to find where the wooden studs are in the wall and screw your brackets into these. To do this (and you'll feel like a proper builder), tap along the wall with your knuckles and listen out for when the hollow sound changes to a hard sound - that will be where the wooden studs are. If you're not confident in your sound-detection abilities, see if you can borrow a stud detector (great name) - or you can buy one from Amazon for less than PS15. With a stud wall, you'll need to put the brackets where they can be screwed into the wooden studs, so it won't necessarily be at either end of the wardrobe. For this reason, as well as wall screws, you'll also need short 16mm screws (so they don't poke through inside the top of the wardrobe). Follow the steps above, but instead of drilling into the wall and using a Rawlplug, use your drill to screw directly into the wooden studs and then into the wardrobe.

5TODDLER-PROOF YOUR DOORS While you're toddler-proofing, you might also want to think about adding some safety catches to your drawers or wardrobe doors, to stop your little one trapping their fingers. Dreambaby Safety Catches (PS7.99 for a set of 12, Argos) are readily available, and very easy to fix by hand or with your cordless drill.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Nov 4, 2017
Words:721
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