How to Install a Bumper in a Sleigh Crib

While pediatricians go back and forth about the safety of baby bumpers, it's really up to parent to decide. Many parents use them to prevent their child's limbs from getting caught between a crib's slats. Sleigh cribs have two solid ends but retain the side slats. Since most bumpers are made with ties to go around corner posts, and since sleigh cribs do not have corner posts, parents must get creative when installing their bumpers. Cheri Sage, the state director for Safe Kids Kansas, recommends that crib bumpers, if used, be thin, firm and tied securely to the crib.

Sleigh cribs with side slats can accommodate snuggly tied bumpers -- with effort.
  1. Loosen the screws or bolts on the bars at the outside corners of your sleigh crib using a screwdriver or a wrench fitting the particular size of the bolts on your crib model.

  2. Pull apart the corners of the crib at all four corners of the crib gently--just enough to be able to feed the cloth bumper ties through each corner.

  3. Place the bumper in your crib and feed the corner end ties--which are traditionally meant to be tied around the corner posts--through the corners that have been loosened.

  4. Pull the ties tight to straighten out the bumper, and tie the ends around the stabilizing bars on the outside bottom of your crib to secure. Tighten the screws at all four corners of the crib, ensuring the fabric of the bumper ties lies flat in between the wood of your crib. If it is bunched up, it could make it difficult to retighten the corners.

  5. Tie the rest of the ties as normal to the slats on the sides.


  • Don't use the type of bumper that goes all the way around on a sleigh crib lacking slats all the way around. If a bumper pad is tied only to the corners, and the other ties in between the corners are not tied to anything, then the product is not being used as it was intended and it could be dangerous.
  • Consult your child's pediatrician to have them observe your particular crib model and bumper set-up to get an expert opinion on its safety. Bumpers are a controversial crib item, and may not even be necessary for your child.
  • A study conducted by the Washington University Department of Pediatrics in 2007 has concluded that crib bumpers may contribute to SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome).
  • The American Academy of Pediatrics has taken a stance that bumper pads be tied securely to the crib as well as being thin and firm.

About the Author

Anne Wilson is a writer and editor covering business and finance news, politics, issues affecting women and minorities, health, gardening, fashion and the environment. Most recently an associate editor for a nationally acclaimed magazine, Wilson also worked for The Associated Press and as a daily news reporter for several years. She has lived in California her entire life.