Your Childs Car Seat Has Been In A Crash
A post shared by The Car Seat Lady on Mar 15, 2015 at 10:09am PDT
It may be a good time to trade up to the next car-seat stage when your child has almost outgrown their car seat, especially if youve found a trade-in event nearby. The savings are tempting, but its a good idea to take your time with the process.
Outside of upgrading from a rear-facing infant seat to a rear-facing convertible seat, other transitions may not be as safe for a child. Consumer Reports reports that a forward-facing seat is not quite as safe as a rear-facing seat. A forward-facing seat is safer than the next stage, the booster seat. As always, your childs safety should come first as you make the decision to upgrade to a new car seat.
Why Get Your Car Seat From Halfords
Whatever seat you choose, you want to know that its the best!
Thats why we always recommend that customers choose a reputable shop who only stock the right car seats, like Halfords. All of the child seats stocked by Halfords have been through rigorous safety testing so you know your child is in safe hands!
We also provide a free car seat fitting demonstration for all our customers, for that added peace of mind.
Child Car Seats/booster Seats
This is the car seat that your child will use for the longest time from approx. 4 years until 12 years. Using a high back booster seat instead of only a booster cushion ensures that your child is provided with a side impact protection during the whole period of use. We recommend you to use a high back booster seat for as long as possible, even if not required by national law anymore to give your child the best kind of protection.
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The Car Seat Has Been Recalled
Recalled seats have defects that have been determined to be unsafe, so if your seat is affected by a recall, stop using it right away and follow the manufacturers instructions for repairing or replacing the seat. You can find the latest recalls at NHTSA.gov/recalls, or sign up for recall alerts on your phone.
When To Transition Chicco Nextfit From Rear
Consider the NextFit® convertible car seat from Chicco as an example. Most of the models in the series have a rear-facing maximum weight of 40 pounds, while the minimum weight for forward-facing is 22 pounds. Youll notice that there is a significant overlap there: 18 pounds to be exact. While you are technically able to turn your child forward-facing when they reach the 22-pound minimum, the AAP suggests that you maximize the rear-facing limit of 40 pounds. Its a good idea to make a mental note of your childs height and weight at their next well-visit so you know when its safest to turn them around.
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Graco Vs Chicco: Pros Cons & Recommendations
Welcome to the Graco Vs Chicco car seat showdown!
Ive spent the last month testing the very best these brands have to offer. Ive talked with moms, looked up recalls, investigated consumer reports and drove around with my three kids doing chores while my husband was kicking back at home, honey the favor is due
Both Graco and Chicco make good car seats, and finding the perfect fit for your needs can take a lot of time . The perk of having three kids is that I can test all these seats at once. Reading this comparison will save you a lot of time. Plus, if youre in the neighborhood, you can treat the kids to ice cream.
Im comparing the brands by seat category. Ive pitted the very best infant carrier from Graco against Chicco, as well as the best convertible and all-in-one car seats.
Im ranking these seats based on safety, comfort, ease of install, looks,design, and, of course, value for the money.
Lets just see the winning seats already!
When The Car Seat Has Significant Wear And Tear
Daily use and poor storage techniques affect the strength and durability of a car seat. Make it a habit to check the car seats for damaged or loose parts, cracks, and worn fasteners. It doesnt matter whether youll trade-in for the exact same model because it is better to have stronger and less worn components.
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What Should You Look For In An Infant Car Seat
First things first: spending less money on a car seat doesnt mean its any less safe.
Every car seat sold in the US must meet the same federal safety standards set forth by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. While each individual state may have their own guidelines around car seats , any seat sold in the US must meet the same benchmarks around safety and installation.
So what will a more expensive infant car seat get you? More expensive seats often means more extras like luxury materials, larger canopies, easier installation and potentially some additional safety features not currently required by law.
Here are some factors to take into consideration when choosing a seat:
For more details about car seats, read our How to Choose a Car Seat guide.
Chicco Keyfit 30 Infant Car Seat Review
The Chicco Keyfit 30 Infant Car Seat is one of the most stylish car seats that you will ever get to use. I mean, they look so cool. Besides coolness, they are easy to carry. Once you have installed the base, you are clicking in and out the top portion.
As the name suggests, the Keyfit 30 Infant Car Seat is limited to 30 pounds. This means that you have to upgrade earlier.
Lets talk about the installation. This part is the most problematic part of any car seat. Remember these words of mine. The infant carriers are the easiest to install as you are upgrading. Youre getting more of a challenge.
The Keyfit 30 infant carrier can be installed both with the base and without it. So buying two bases is not necessary. Also, you can install it with the latch system or with the seat belt. Chicco came up with a genius solution on how to get the tightest install.
When youre using the latch system, you have to pull one single strap to get it tight. Other brands either use two or a different design. By pulling on one strap, it gets easier. Either way, you will have to push the base into the seat so it wont wiggle. This is where Graco takes the lead with that car seat. You dont have to use force.
Another benefit of Chicco is that its made out of breathable fabric. Your little one wont be drenched from sweat even during the summer months.
Other than these points, there isnt any significant difference.
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When To Stop Using A Booster Seat
Step 1: Check the weight/height limitation of your seat
If your booster seat is approved to ECE R44-04, you have to stop using your seat once the maximum weight has been reached, which is 36 kg based on the regulation.If your booster seat is approved to UN R129, you have to stop using the seat once the maximum height has been reached, which is 150 cm based on the regulation.
Step 2: Check your national laws
Each country has different regulations in their national laws for how long a child must use a child car seat. In most countries, the minimum is 135 cm or the age of 12.
Step 3: Check how your child sits in the car without a child car seat
In addition to step 1 and 2, you can do the 5-point check to see if your childs body would be ready to sit in your car without a child car seat. If one of these 5 points is not reached yet, your child should still sit in a booster seat:
When Should You Make The Switch
While infant car seats have weight limits ranging from 22 to 35 pounds, nearly every baby is too tall before reaching the weight limit, especially for the seats with 30+ pound limits. Too tall is when the child’s head is 1 inch below the top of the seat. It would be best if you familiarized yourself with your car seat’s height and weight requirements to ensure your child is riding safely.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends transitioning your baby from the infant seat to a rear-facing convertible seat, once they meet the minimum height or weight requirement for their infant seat. If a child is over the weight limit but still within the height limit, it is not safe to use the seat . Once your child reaches one limit, they are too big.
While the max height for most infant seats is when the child’s head is 1 inch below the top of the seat, crash testing from Consumer Reports indicates that it may be best to transition to the rear-facing convertible seat earlier, before your child’s head is within an inch of the top.
CR’s crash tests with a 12-month-old dummy showed that the risk of head injury is much greater in an infant seat than a rear-facing convertible seatas the dummy hit its head on the back of the front seat in more than half of the crashes in infant seats, but in only 4% of the crashes when in a convertible seat.
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Types Of Child Passenger Restraint Systems
There are three main types of children safety restraint systems: rear-facing, forward-facing, and booster seats.
Different regulations are applied to each restraint system, especially when it comes to the maximum weight, height, and age of the child who has to use it.
However, when deciding which restraint system to use for your child, always refer to the regulations of weight and height first and consider your kid’s age.
Car Seat Buyers Guide
At the end of the comparison article, I usually include a small buyers guide to help you. You need to know what to look at to make the best decision possible.
When you get your car seat, you need to decide where you will install it. Let me share with you a tip. The safest place is in the middle of the car. Indeed, thats not possible for everyone, so heres my backup tip. The second safest place is behind the driver.
My next tip relates to car seat safety. Did you know that 75% of car seats in the US are not installed correctly? If thats the case, then the car seat wont be able to do its job. So its paramount to get that tight install. Whenever you have doubts, reach out to a licensed professional, they can help you.
As you have seen the tables, they look similar. Thats my system to analyze car seats. You can copy it if you like it.
Top of the list is safety. I highly recommend not skimp on it. Get the most safety that you can afford. Theres a dirty industry secret that some brands dont want to know. There are car seat makers that barely pass the government safety tests. Now, which one would you like to protect your child? The one that barely passed or the one that went the extra mile.
Besides the standard front and rear protection, many car seats offer side impact protection. Its a recent addition, but a handful of car seats have rollover protection as well. As you know, rollover is the deadliest crash from them all.
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When To Switch Car Seats
Its a good time to be a kid in a car: both cars and car seats continue to get safer, child vehicle fatalities are down , and car seat usage is up. Much of the effectiveness of a car seat rests in its specificity: it needs to be the right fit and size for the kid and their developmental stage. But with so many car seats available and configurations possible, it can be daunting to decide which seat to get and when to get it. Heres a rundown of the different types of seats and a checklist to see if your kid has outgrown their current seat and is ready for the next one.
The Car Seat Is Expired
Many caregivers don’t realize that car seats have expiration dates. The plastic used to make seats can degrade over time and become brittle, potentially making the seat less effective. In other words, if youre using a seat that previously belonged to an older sibling, it might be nearing its limit.
To find the expiration date, check the seats label or the manufacturer instructions . If you’re still not sure, count from six years post the manufacturer date, the AAP says.
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Snugride 35 Baby Car Seat By Graco
Gracos SnugRide infant vehicle seat is lightweight and easy to transport and handle. This is another decently-priced car seat alternative that can fit kids who weight up to 35 pounds. Therefore, this seat model will last you longer. Your baby will enjoy comfortable, safe, and cozy rides.
The product even has a removable head support for newborns. However, you will need to purchase an adaptor if you want to attach this products carrier to strollers that arent made by Graco. User rating: 4.3/5.Price:
Find Out How Your Car Works In Regards To Child
First and foremost, you need to check whether or not your vehicle is compatible with the car seat model that you want to purchase. Find the cars owners manual and study the child-safety section to discover all the relevant features you need to know like belts and seats.
For instance, older vehicles will most likely lack a LATCH which stands for lower anchors and tethers for kids. This particular system was created to enable car owners to install a baby car seat easily, without the need of using seatbelts. Last but not least, find out the dimensions of your vehicles backseat to see if a certain car seat model will fit.
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Stage : Booster Seats
Once your child reaches the weight and height limits of their forward-facing seat, they can move into a booster seat. Because weight limits can vary among forward-facing seats , please check the manual for the weight limits of your specific car seat.
Provincial law requires children to remain in booster seats until they are at least 145 cm , 36 kg or nine years old.
Without a booster seat, a seatbelt rides too high on a child’s stomach and neck and can cause serious injuries. Research shows that booster seats protect children from serious injury by more than 60 per cent.
How to choose a booster seat
If your vehicle does not have a head restraint, choose one of the following:
- A high-back booster seat that provides head and neck support. Some models convert from a forward-facing seat with a harness to a high-back booster seat.
- An adjustable booster seat that provides adjustable head and neck support as your child grows.
If your vehicle has a head restraint, choose one of the following:
- a fixed high-back booster seat
- a height-adjustable high-back booster seat
- a simple/backless booster seat
- The safest position for a car seat is the vehicles rear middle seat. If you have more than one child, place the youngest in the middle, as their smaller bodies are not strong enough to withstand the impact of a crash.
- Keep an empty booster seat buckled up to prevent it from moving and hitting you in a sudden stop or crash.
Check the fit
What Size Car Seat
Car seats are divided into 3 main groups, depending on your baby or child’s age and weight:
- group 0+ rear-facing car seats suitable for babies aged up to about 15 months or who weigh up to 13 kg some can be clipped on to a pushchair frame and are known as travel systems
- group 1 forward-facing seats suitable for children who weigh 9-18kg or who are aged from about 9 months to 4 years
- group 2/3 high-backed booster seats suitable for children who weigh 15-36kg or are aged from about 4 to 11 years
You can also buy combination seats that cross over these groups, such as group 0+/1 seats, which are suitable from birth until your child weighs about 18kg or is aged about 4. These can be more economical, but may not offer the same level of protection.
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Your Child Is Too Tall For An Infant Seat
Although many rear-facing infant seats have a weight limit of 30 pounds, very few of them have height limits. Theres a good chance your child will outgrow the seat in height well before they exceed the weight limit. Has your child grown too tall for the infant seat? Then its time to upgrade to a convertible seat that can face either the front or back of your car and continue to have your child face the rear.