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I have extensive work being done in one of the rooms in the house. For their own safety, I would like to keep curious 3-to-6-year-olds out of that room. The door to the room has no lock, and opens inward into the room.

I will of course explain to the children not to go there, and put appropriate incentives for compliance. However, I do not expect this to be 100% effective, and so am looking for a mechanical solution as well.

Note that the solution need not be 100% effective. For example, if a child needs to fetch a chair to stand upon to unlock the door, that is acceptable. I just want something to protect from impulsive "I am just going to take a small peek, I promise." Because this is only for a couple of weeks, I do not want to install a lock. Ideally I would like not to have to repaint the area either.

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I think the most simple solution is this installed close to the ceiling:

enter image description here

Assuming the surrounding paint is white, this really shouldn't require painting since it's one small hole and you could just use white wood filler to make the holes disappear once removed.

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How about a small flip lock installed at the top of the door? The kids can't reach it and it mounts into the frame with two small screws. here is a picture of one you can pick up at Walmart for about 6 bucks. enter image description here

Works on right or left opening doors.

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After thinking a bit I found two methods that do not require buying specialized hardware, and cause no damage to the door:

1) Tie the door handle to a heavy weight (e.g. a full bucket) that children cannot move

2) Close the door, then unscrew and hide the door handle

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Just spend $15 on a cheap privacy knob. You can use the provided pin key to open the door. If you go with the same brand as is on there now (so it mates with the bolt latch), it's a 60 second install.

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