I bought the Safety 1st Tot Lok Starter Set for $11.99 from Babies R Us when my son first started exploring the kitchen cabinets. Definitely a place I did not want my son to be exploring. No matter how hard you try to child proof your cabinets by removing all sharp objects and putting them in a higher place, my son still found himself getting into the cabinets and finding things he shouldn’t be touching.
Since we just moved in to our new home we had just built, my husband and I didn’t want to use the childproof latches that slip around the door handles. We wanted to use a safety lock that we couldn’t see. We ended up finding the Safety 1st Tot Lok Starter Set and bought them right away.
As soon as my husband started to install them, I knew this was going to be a problem. He was still working on installing them almost an hour later and nothing was done. The hardest part about the installation is that you have to drill directly into your cabinets. We really should have thought this through because know we have holes in our brand new cabinets. After my husband had to make his own template when installing these locks, he finally got one done. Low and behold, it didn’t work. The first one he tried installing was for a drawer. The whole idea when using these locks is that you need a magnetic key to unlock the lock from the outside. Once the magnetic fields line up, you should hear a click and the lock should unlock. When we tried to unlock the drawer, we couldn’t find the magnetic field on the other side. We struggled and struggled until my husband almost had to break the drawer. He was finally able to slip a knife into the drawer and unlock in manually. It turned out that the problem was that the face of our drawer was too thick. What? Yes, the face (the wood) on the front of the drawer was too thick and the magnetic mechanism wouldn’t read. Wonderful, now what. Now my son can get into all of our drawers because none of the magnetic locks work.
Moving onto the cabinets that have doors. Well, the installation wasn’t as difficult but still time consuming. To our surprise, they actually worked. When you wave the magnetic key over the area that you installed the lock inside the door, you do hear a clock and the door unlocks. I was very pleased to see that these weren’t a total waste of money. We were able to lock all of our cabinets that my son liked to explore in. That is of course until “Little Bam Bam”, what I like to refer to my son as, was able to pull the cabinet door open with the lock in place and locked. How did he do that? First I though maybe I forgot to lock it, nope. I locked and it and closed it. Then I tried pulling the door open and yes, I was able to open it as well. After cleaning up all of the plastic knives that my son just finished throwing all around the kitchen(when I realized he got into the cabinet), I called my husband and told him that these locks were a waste of time and money and we ruined our brand new cabinets for no reason. Now we were going to have to go out and buy the other safety locks that slip around the door handles.
Another thing that I didn’t like about this lock system is that I would constantly lose the magnetic key that you needed in order to open the cabinets. That is of course, if your cabinet would actually stay locked. To me the idea of the product is better than the product itself. Of course, these are also on the expensive side. I could have bought much cheaper locks and they probably would have worked much better. It is too late for us to return them but I would highly recommend you did not purchase the Safety 1st Tot Lok Starter Set. I know some people love them but I just had the worst experience with them and would never use them again.