On October 16, 2020, Health Canada announced the NEW Corded Window Coverings Regulations or the CWCR under the Canada Consumer Product Safety Act or CCPSA. It was supposed to be effective last year on May 1, 2021. But it was extended until April 30, 2022, due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on corded windows covering businesses and homeowners.
Health Canada took this extension to spread awareness regarding CWCR and monitor the compliance progress of various businesses providing window blinds, shades, and other window coverings.
However, starting May 1, 2022, Health Canada will begin enforcing CWCR compliance and continue monitoring the progress of businesses. Non-compliance with the said regulations will lead to reputational damages and fines.
What are the new corded window blinds and coverings regulations?
We all acknowledge there are strangulation risks to children and pets because of the cords hanging from your blinds & shades. Health Canada will enforce the NEW Corded Window Coverings Regulations to eliminate the risks starting May 1, 2022.
There are many specifications in this new CWCR you need to know. Here are the following:
- All the accessible parts and components of the corded blinds & shades that are small enough to be a choking or strangling hazard should be enclosed in a small parts cylinder. Then, this cylinder should be attached to the corded blinds and shades permanently and should not be detached when a force of 90 N is applied.
- All external components and parts of the blinds and coverings should NOT contain more than 90mg/kg of lead.
- Unreachable cords should remain unreachable whether the blinds and shades are fully opened, closed, or in between.
- A reachable cord with one free end should NOT be longer than 22 cm when pulled in any direction with a gradually applied force attaining 35 N.
- A reachable cord with no free end should NOT be longer than 22 cm between two contact points when pulled in any direction with a gradually applied force attaining 35 N.
- When the reachable cord is pulled in any direction, exerting a gradual force of 35 N, the perimeter of any loop created (created, existing, or enlarged) should NOT exceed 44 cm.
- Suppose there are two reachable cords (one free end connected to another, end to end) and pulled in any direction with a gradually applied force attaining 35 N. In that case, the length of the resulting cord should not be longer than 22 cm, and the perimeter of the loop created should not exceed 44 cm.
Are there exemptions to these rules?
All their requirements do not only apply to lift cords but also to the following cords:
- Inner cords
- Window frame cords
- Backside cords
- Reachable cords (those cords that any person can touch)
When do the window blinds regulations take effect?
The new corded blinds and coverings regulations will start May 1, 2022. It is best to be familiar with the changes to avoid facing fines and other damages.
What do the new window blinds regulations cover?
These new and updated regulations apply to all window blinds, shades, and coverings with any cord (unreachable, reachable, hidden, or exposed) for consumer use in Canada. Both custom-made and off-the-shelf window shades, blinds, and coverings. It includes all window covering manufacturers and retailers offer, both imported into the country or manufactured here in Canada.
Why were these changes made to the window blind regulations?
Long, hanging, and accessible cords have the capability of causing severe and deadly problems to children and pets. Cords can be a strangulation hazard to kids and even pets. In addition, they can cause accidents for people of all ages. Some people might get caught in these cords and trip.
There are numerous reports of strangulation deaths and near-fatal accidents in Canada alone caused by window blinds and coverings’ long, reachable, and accessible cords. Based on these reports, most of the children in these incidents are between 1 to 3 years old.
Children are naturally curious. They tend to put anything in their mouth and pull or grab anything around them. That is why it is essential to make sure there are no hazardous objects around them and childproof your home.
Strangulation and accidents can happen anytime, anywhere, and quickly. Health Canada acknowledges and understands these risks and wants to decrease these accidents from occurring. Hence, the new and updated Corded Window Coverings Regulations.
These new regulations aim to reduce the risks of strangulation and other accidents on children that usually happens because of the long, accessible, and hanging cords on window blinds and other coverings. Experts thoroughly check all the specifications to improve the safety of children and pets in households and establishments all over Canada.
Can you still buy the same window blinds as before?
All corded window blinds and coverings will be discontinued and taken off the Wholesale Blind Factory website to comply with the new window blinds regulations.
What if you still have corded window blinds in your home or business?
The new CWCR applies to all blinds and coverings sold as of May 1, 2022. If you already have corded window shades, blinds, and coverings at home or business, you can continue to use them. However, they are not safe for kids and pets compared to cordless and motorized window blinds and shades.
If you are planning to continue using your corded window blinds and coverings, we highly recommend these tips to help improve the safety of your children and pets:
- Shorten the hanging cords. You can snip and trim the cords so that your kids and pets cannot reach them.
- Roll up those cords. You can use a tension device or tie-down to help secure these cords on the wall.
- Keep the beds, furniture, cribs, and playpens away from the window blinds and walls. It is crucial because kids and pets are naturally curious.
- Read the manufacturer’s instructions and warnings. You should install corded window blinds and shades properly to help avoid any accidents.
- Remove all those tassels and hanging loops at the end of your window blind cords.
- Install cordless or automated window blinds and coverings in nurseries, kids’ rooms, and playrooms.
How will this affect the blinds industry?
The window blind industry will take a direct hit with this new CWCR. Remember, CWCR will be enforced right after the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns, where many businesses are also affected. Not all companies can overcome this obstacle. CWCR returns when the economy and businesses are starting to get back on track.
However, we all understand the goal of these new regulations enforced by Health Canada. Businesses in this industry all over Canada, both manufacturers, and retailers, will adapt and follow these regulations. We will think, design, and manufacture different window blinds and coverings. We provide you with all the benefits of corded window blinds & shades but follow the new Health Canada regulations.
What are alternatives to window blinds?
If you are planning to purchase window shades, blinds, and coverings for your home and establishment, there are many alternatives to corded window blinds, including:
- Cordless Manual Window Coverings: They typically work using a spring-loaded system, zero-gravity, or other cordless lift systems. These types of blinds can be easily raised and lowered by hand.
- Motorized or Automated Window Coverings: You can operate these blinds with a remote control or an application on your smartphone. Motorized window blinds are ideal for hard-to-reach places.
- Drapery: There is a wide array of drapery available in the market. This type of window covering is not affected by CWSR.
At Wholesale Blind Factory, we aim to provide excellent quality, safe, and stunning blinds, shades, and other window coverings for all. We have a team of experienced professionals that will help you choose the safest and most stunning window blinds and coverings for your home, office, and establishments.
Contact us today, and we will help you choose the right window coverings that will pass the new and updated Corded Window Coverings Regulations.