Create Your Own Door Counter – And Let The Fun Begin

By Megan Hanson

How do you know if your Little Free Library is being used? Maybe you notice different titles appearing and disappearing, or you see excited kids, families and neighbors taking a peek inside.

If you want to get a bit more in-depth and figure out how often your Library is being opened every day, try installing a door counter. The idea is a simple – a door counter will track every time your Library door is opened and at the end of the day (or week or month) you can check the count and reset it.

Photo courtesy of The Bicycling Bunny

Is this an exact science? No, of course not. Obviously the same person (especially a child) might open and close the door several times during one visit, so the count is more of an estimate of how many people are stopping by.

Still, installing a door counter is a fun and easy way to get a better idea of how much your Library is being used.

How do you get started?

Well, Element 14 and The Ben Heck Show have created an awesome video tutorial showing you how to create a door counter. This tutorial is aimed at the makerspace community and assumes that you have some knowledge of electrical engineering…or at least the inclination to tinker around with it.

If you’re not quite so handy, then check out this easy, 3-step DIY tutorial from The Bicycling Bunny.  The set-up is really simple; you basically just purchase a “push” tally counter and use double-sided tape to position it in your Library so that each time the door closes, the counter is “pushed” and the count is recorded.

OK, go forth and build! We hope you have fun tracking how many people are using your Little Library, and check back often for more fun projects and tips.

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