With prices of new cribs ranging between $100 and $500, many new parents consider alternatives. In September 2007, over a million cribs were recalled because the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission had discovered some danger. Consumer Reports recommends that cribs conform to safety standards established in 1999 by the Juvenile Products Manufacturing Commission. Here are some ways to consider fixing a second hand crib safely.
Large stores like WalMart or Target have crib parts available. You can always get a new mattress and bumper pads. If you need hardware, try a home center, like Home Depot or Lowes, or a hardware store. A complete set of crib hardware, including springs, two stabilizer bars, four rods and a set of teething rail covers cost approximately $160 in 2009. If you needed only the teething rails, $14 to $15 is a fair price.
A number of websites sell crib hardware and parts online. Some sites even offer parts that change the way your crib functions. For example, you could adapt your crib to have one or both sides slide up and down. Another option would be for one or both sides to fold down.
Check with the Manufacturer
Many parts for cribs made in the last decade may be available through the manufacturers. If you know the brand of the crib, use a directory to find contact information for the manufacturer (see Resources). Look under "customer service" or "parts" to identify a specific model and to order a specific part. These manufacturers also have call centers to help you if you have questions.
Slats are critical to a crib's safety. Babies have died or been seriously injured when they their heads got caught between slats. Check with the Consumer Product Safety Division at (800) 638-2772 to make sure no recalls exist for any model and manufacturer of a crib with a missing slat.
Jenny Landis-Steward has written reports for child welfare research for over 14 years. She has a master's degree in clinical psychology. She was the editor of two social service agency publications for seven years. Her economic thesis was an analysis of employment trends.