usability – Appropriate use of and child-proof alternatives to screwed-down battery covers

On lots of electronic devices with replaceable batteries, the battery cover is secured by a screw.

I understand that it may be necessary to protect against child access to the battery bay, but using a screw necessitates the use of a screwdriver to open the battery cover, which can be inconvenient. It annoys me to no end that I need to open my toolbox, grab my screwdriver, and unscrew the darn thing to replace the batteries.

When is using a screw appropriate for securing a battery cover? Under what circumstances is a simple latch closure inadequate for a battery cover? Are there safety regulations that cover this?


It appears that there are legal requirements that specify that toys intended for young children must have secured battery covers. However, this question covers more than just toys, but pretty much any electronic device that has replaceable batteries. Aside from safety and regulatory requirements, when is it better to use a screw instead of a latch closure to secure the battery cover?

Also, what alternatives are there to a screwed-down battery cover that can prevent young children from accessing batteries while being more convenient than a screw closure?

Any such battery compartment must be “inaccessible” such that “it is not physically exposed by reason of a sealed casing and does not become exposed through reasonably foreseeable use and abuse of the product” (source). This may be very difficult to attain in a toolless manner, but any ideas are welcome.