How to Childproof a Dishwasher

Household dishwashers are not only more energy-efficient than hand washing your dishes, but they also help reduce the amount of time you waste in the kitchen, so you can spend more time with your family. However, if you have a toddler or young child in the house, he may see the dishwasher as an unexplored object that he needs to investigate or as something with which he wants to play. You can childproof the dishwasher and the kitchen a few different ways to keep your little one safe and out of trouble.

Refer to your dishwasher manual to see if it has a child-lock feature 2. Some dishwashers have a setting that will keep it locked until you unlock it a certain way. If your dishwasher has this feature, you might have to press the "Heated Dry" button for a few seconds to lock and unlock the unit.

Install a dishwasher locking strap to prevent your child from opening the unit whenever he wants. You attach these handy safety devices to the countertop above your dishwasher and to the top edge of the dishwasher. Installation is often as simple as peeling the sticky-backed sticker off and pressing the locking strap into place. Read the product label for installation and instructions use information.

Secure a pressure-mounted baby gate in the kitchen doorway to keep your child out of the kitchen when you’re not using it.


Always keep the dishwasher door closed and latched when you’re not using it. This helps cut down on the number of times your toddler yanks on the door and it comes crashing down on his head.

Keep dishwasher detergent and all other household cleaners out of reach from children.

Sharp utensils and knifes should be facing down and away from the front of the dishwasher, just in case your little explorer gets into the unit. If it becomes a problem, simply wash these by hand and put them away immediately after.