Any parent will tell you that an innocent-looking staircase can prove to be a deathtrap when you have little ones running around your house.
However, this doesn’t mean your home can never be completely safe for your young children and nowadays, there are plenty of handy devices that can prevent all kinds of accidents.
One such device is the baby gate, a gate that is designed to stop babies and toddlers from climbing up a staircase while mom or dad isn’t looking.
These gates come in many styles and sizes, so they’re ideal for any kind of stairway. They also work perfectly with banisters as well as walls and even fences.
In fact, these gates are one of the best ways to keep kids from falling down stairs or getting hurt by tripping over them.
In this article, we’ll be going over our top picks for the best baby gates for every kind of staircase you might have in your home.
Stick around to the end because we can pretty much guarantee that your type of staircase will feature in this guide, and we’ll find the perfect safety solution for you!
What Kinds Of Baby Gates Are There
Before we dive into the best baby gate products available online, let’s take a quick look at the different varieties of products out there.
The most common types of baby gates are:
Fixed Height Baby Gate
Fixed height baby gates are great if you want to make sure that your child stays safely on the first floor but don’t want to restrict their movement too much. These are usually made from wood and range in sizes from 2 feet to 4 feet tall.
Adjustable Height Baby Gate
Adjustable height baby gates are similar to fixed height baby gates except that they allow you to raise and lower them according to your needs. This means you can adjust how high or low they stay depending on whether you need to block access to certain parts of your home or not.
Portable Baby Gate
Portable baby gates are basically just like adjustable height baby gates except that you can move them wherever you want. You can use them inside or outside your home and then simply pack them away when you aren’t using them.
Another important distinction with baby gates is how they open. A side-opening baby gate is one of the most popular designs on the market, and we’ll see plenty of them in our top products later on.
It works with a simple hinged gate, attached to a frame. They open just like a regular door, so they’re super easy to use, too.
Retracting Stair Gate
The other common design for baby gates is the retracting stair gate. These are less common than side-opening gates but still have their own benefits.
They’re often made with softer materials like mesh or cloth panels and work as temporary connectors between two sides of a frame.
When they’re not being used, these panels can be retracted so that the staircase can function normally.
These gates tend to be a little more expensive, but they’re also very stylish and convenient.
Most Versatile Baby Gate: Regalo 192-Inch Adjustable Baby Gate
The first baby gate we’re looking at is one of the best options on the market for versatility. This product actually consists of 8 different gates that can be assembled and configured in just about any shape you want!
This makes it super easy to set this gate up in any room of your home or just about any sized staircase.
It has a very impressive overall size, stretching to a grand total of up to 192 inches in length and running at 28 inches tall all the way around.
The set has also been designed to be very easy to set up, meaning you don’t need to be an expert in construction to get the hang of it. In fact, you won’t even need any extra tools or equipment and the set comes with a pack of 4 wall mounts included in the price.
The main material used for constructing this gate is steel, which is super durable and will definitely stand the test of time. There’s no reason you couldn’t use this gate for the first few years of your child’s life!
Of course, one feature that should be standard on all baby gates is a safety lock, which also appears with this product. This means you’ll never find your small children can accidentally open the gate and cause an accident while you’re not looking.
However, you should be careful that this gate isn’t necessarily as safe as it seems. One customer found that their child managed to get their finger stuck in a hole of one of the components of this gate.
While we’re not saying this will definitely happen to you if you buy this gate, it does demonstrate how children will always find a way to cause mischief if they’re left alone for long enough!
- Very versatile – Can be used anywhere in the house
- Easy to assemble – You can easily get this gate set up in a matter of minutes and with no extra tools
- Durable steel construction – The best material for ensuring your gate doesn’t get damaged or broken during use
- Some dangerous components – Some components have been known to cause problems with some children, but this is only an isolated issue
- SUPERWIDE: Fits opens up to 192 inches wide and stands 28 inches tall
- 2-IN-1: Can convert from a super-wide gate to an 8-panel play yard. No tools require, quick and easy. Includes 4 pack of wall mounts
- CONFIGURABLE: Each panel can be adjusted to fit almost any opening. Great for wide spaces, angled openings, hallway, doorway, bottom of stairs or barrier. Folds flat for storage.Wipes clean
Best Baby Gate For Staircase With One Wall: Lascal KiddyGuard Avant Retractable Baby Gate (Black Mesh)
Ok, let’s say you have a staircase with one banister and one side and a wall on the other. A regular side-opening gate might not feel natural to walk through with a wall on one side, and it will ruin the overall aesthetic of this part of your home.
The solution? A concertina baby gate!
This product works by using a wall-mounted frame on one side of the staircase, with a gap in the middle to the opposite frame on the banister.
A mesh panel can then be pulled out of the wall-mounted frame and attached to the banister frame, creating a barrier that your baby can’t get through.
In addition to being able to create a secure environment for your little ones, there are many other benefits to having this type of baby gate installed in your home.
For example, when the gate is not in use, it hides away seamlessly within its own frame, keeping the staircase free for grown-ups to use whenever they please and without an annoying gate in the way.
Similarly, the gate opens and closes with minimal noise and minimal fuss thanks to the easy-sliding fabric panel.
Finally, the materials used for this gate are much more child-friendly than some other typical gate designs. It’s pretty easy to see how a child could injure themselves with a steel gate nearby, but it’s much less likely to happen with a soft fabric panel.
One thing to note is that this type of gate tends to be more expensive than others, so make sure you do your research and ensure the gate fits your budget before buying.
- Versatile – Allows you to block access from the top or bottom of your staircase
- Child-friendly – No sharp edges to hurt your kids
- Minimal noise – When opening and closing, the gate makes very little sound
- Expensive – Compared to other types of baby gates, this one is quite pricey
- Fully retractable hardware mounted gate completely disappears when not in use and eliminates the tripping hazard that all traditional metal gates present.
- Elegant brushed aluminum designer housing and high quality mesh panel compliments any home décor.
- Completely quiet to open and close with easy one-handed operation, thanks to a patented delayed locking mechanism with intuitive timer.
Most Portable Baby Gate: Toddleroo By North States 42.6″ Wide Portable Traveler Baby Gate
As parents, we know how much of a nightmare it can be to have so many things you need to travel with to look after your kids properly. If you’re going away on vacation with your kids and want to keep them safe, you don’t want to have to take a heavy metal baby gate with you.
That’s why this lightweight, portable baby gate from Toddleroo By North States is the perfect product for the traveling parent!
It has a sturdy design that allows you to easily move it around your house, as well as a strong locking mechanism that keeps your little one safely contained.
It’s also super easy to install, taking only a matter of seconds for anybody to set it up or take it down.
Then, once you do take the gate down, you can store it away in the handy travel bag provided.
The gate uses pressure-mount technology to allow you to install the gate in any gap you need. Just use the adjustable knobs to extend or retract the metal frame of the gate and fit it snugly between the walls or banisters of your staircase.
If you’re looking for a simple, yet effective way to keep your kids safe while you’re gone, this is the best option for you.
However, the only real downside to this gate is that it doesn’t have a door mechanism like most other gates. This means you have to step over the gate every time you want to get through.
Whilst this doesn’t mean it is less likely that your child will somehow find a way through the gate, it can get quite annoying for parents to have to navigate every time.
For that reason, this gate is likely more appropriate as a travel baby gate or one to put in the doorway to the garage or some other anti-baby zone of the house, rather than the staircase.
- Portable – Easy to transport and set up anywhere you need it
- Sturdy – Strong locking mechanism ensures safety
- Simple installation – Takes just minutes to install
- Doesn’t come with a door mechanism – You’ll have to step over the barrier each time you want to pass
- KEEPING TODDLERS SAFE SINCE 1953: Worry-Free Safety! The Portable Traveler Baby Gate is designed to block doorways, hallways and other spaces you may travel to.
- EASY TO INSTALL: Sets up by adjusting the extendable bars & inserting them into the fabric sleeves. Bars lock in place and tension knobs are used to create a snug fit - with no wall damage. Doesn't require additional hardware or tools.
- LOADED WITH CONVENIENT FEATURES: The Portable Traveler Baby Gate goes anywhere! Simply fold up the gate in it’s own travel bag and you are ready to go! To open the gate, press the button on the upper and lower quick release latch.
Best Baby Gate For Two-Banister Staircases: Summer Infant Banister And Stair Gate
If the staircase in your home has a banister on each side, the most effective and aesthetically pleasing design is often a more symmetrical one. That’s why this particular baby gate is ideal for two-banister staircases.
Not to mention, it can be tricky to find a baby gate that will attach snugly onto banisters which are often designed with awkward and unusual shapes. Again, the design of this gate overcomes that issue nicely.
The gate uses innovative designs using frames and loop buckles to fit seamlessly onto any kind of banister or even a flat wall if necessary. For this reason, it’s also a very versatile option.
It’s another option that’s very easy to install. It doesn’t require any drilling, extra tools, or technical expertise to get this gate set up in a matter of seconds.
Furthermore, it also uses a sleek-looking wooden finish to blend into the common staircase banister design, making it look like the gate is a core part of your home’s decor.
The only real problem is that this gate doesn’t work if your banisters start on the second step of your staircase. In these instances, there will be a large gap left at the bottom or sides.
Instead, it fits neatly on staircases with banisters that start at the same level as the floor.
Overall, though, this is an excellent choice for anyone who wants a stylish, modern look without having to sacrifice their safety at all.
- Stylish – Looks great on any staircase
- Easy to install – No tools required
- Versatile – Can be used on banisters or walls
- Requires floor-level banisters – This baby gate won’t be very effective on staircase banisters that start at the first step or higher.
- ACCOMODATES MOST OPENINGS – The Summer Banister and Stair, Top of Stairs Baby Gate with dual installation kit can be used between doorways, and stairways. The 33" tall baby gate fits openings up 32" to 48" wide.
- EASY INSTALLATION: With the dual installation kit, this baby gate accommodates banister-to-banister installation, single banister installation at the top or bottom of stairs, as well as installation in doorways. No drilling required on square banisters.
- ULTIMATE CONVENIENCE: The quick release mechanism allows for easy removal and re-installation, so you can continue to easily use this baby gate whenever, or wherever, you need to.
Best Metal Baby Gate For Staircases: Regalo 2-In-1 Wall Mounted Baby Gate
We’ve already looked at some pretty effective baby gates that work on all kinds of staircases, but most metal gates are better suited for use in doorways.
This particular gate from Regalo still uses the structurally-sound metal materials for construction but worked well on staircases as well as in doorways.
It has an adjustable design which allows it to fit snugly in most stairways, up to a width of 43 inches. It even stands at 30.5 inches tall, making it almost impossible for small children to climb over.
The steel materials used for the gate also give it an extra level of durability over some mesh or cloth-panel baby gates, meaning they won’t get damaged nearly as easily and will probably last your child’s first few years of life without needing to be repaired or replaced.
It also uses a walk-through door design with a child safety lock to make it easy and convenient for adults to use, while small children won’t be able to get through it.
This is another product that comes with a lifetime warranty, so you know you’ll have peace of mind knowing that it’s built to last.
Sadly, though, this product isn’t completely perfect, and some customers have found issues with the structural integrity of the gate.
One complained that their 3-year-old was able to pull the gate off the wall with ease, forcing them to screw it into the wall.
While this could easily be an issue with any child, it doesn’t stop this gate from being a cheap and cheerful option to provide some extra level of safety for your home.
- Adjustable width – Makes it suitable for stairs as well as doors
- Durable – Will stand up to heavy usage for many years
- Consistent quality – Good value for money
- Weak structure – Some children might find it easy to pull the gate off of the wall, even when attached to the manufacturer’s instructions
- EXTRA WIDE: Expands to stairways and openings between 29-43 inches wide. Stands 30.5 inches tall. Wall mounted gate.
- VALUE BUNDLE: Includes gate, mounted level poles, banister corner protectors (16), square banister adapters (4), plastic wall spacers (6), round banister adapters (1), and wall mounting hardware
- ADJUSTABLE: Perfect for doorway, hallway and top or bottom of stair use. Gate can quickly be removed out of the opening for easy storage.Wipes clean
If you’re not entirely convinced by the gates you’ve seen on our list, there are plenty of other options available online or in stores near your home that might fit your criteria better.
These are some things you should be looking out for when doing your own shopping:
Look for gates that come with additional safety features such as anti-tip devices or side guards to prevent kids from falling down the stairs.
Some of these can be added after purchase, but others need to be purchased separately. If you want to buy one of these types of safety features, check if it’s included in the price of the gate before buying.
You don’t want to spend too much money on a sturdy gate only to see it break within weeks of installation. Look for gates that are made from strong materials like steel or aluminum.
You may also want to consider getting a gate that’s designed specifically for stairs instead of just using it in doorways. This way, you can ensure that it works properly regardless of whether you’re using it in a doorway or on a staircase.
Make sure that the gate you choose fits tightly against the walls of your house. You shouldn’t be able to slide it around or move it at all once it’s installed.
Make sure that you read the instructions carefully before putting them up. There should be no gaps between the gate and the wall where it meets the floor.
The more solid the gate feels, the easier it will be to install.
Don’t pay too much for a gate. It needs to be durable enough to withstand heavy use, but it shouldn’t cost more than $150.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do I Put Up My Baby Gate?
There are two ways to attach the gate to the wall. One method involves drilling holes in the wall and attaching the gate directly with screws.
Another method involves using brackets that hold the gate in place while still allowing access through the opening.
Which Is Best?
It depends on what type of gate you’re installing. Drilling holes in the wall is usually recommended for heavier duty gates that require stronger attachment points.
Brackets are generally used for lighter-duty gates that don’t have to support heavy weights. They often include pre-drilled holes, so they can be quickly and easily mounted.
Can I Put A Fence On Top Of A Baby Gate?
Yes, you can. Fences can be placed over most baby gates to create an extra level of security.
Baby gates are great tools for keeping young children safe. They help keep toddlers away from dangerous areas and make it safer for parents to work in their homes.
However, you’ll need to take several factors into consideration when choosing which ones to buy. Make sure that the gate you end up purchasing has all the necessary safety features, is easy to install, and won’t cost you an arm and a leg.