Buyer’s Guide for an Infant Car Seats: What you need to know before buying a Baby Car Seat
Choosing a car seat for your child can be so overwhelming especially if you are doing it for the first time. There are various brands in the market today with different styles and designs, therefore, making it hard to pick one. In some countries, emerging laws and rulings may get you confused in deciding what is the right seat to go with. The good thing about today’s car seats is that you can purchase one your kid will use from his infant to teen stage or buy a specific one which includes either a baby, toddler or child seat. If you intend to get a cost-effective one then you should consider going for one he can use from birth to teen stage.
Car seat rules
The law requires that kids use car seats until they are around 12 years or have a height of 135 cm. Children above 22 kgs can use booster seats with a seat belt used by adults to ensure they snugly fit due to more weight. If you decide to go for a booster car seat, make sure that it is a high-back seat to ensure that your kid’s head is supported and side wings protection. For an infant, use a rear-facing car seat and a front-facing car seat for kids who are older.
Buying a car seat guide
As much as buying a car seat for your kid may be very overwhelming especially if you are new at it, there are basic things you should consider to make sure that you make the right choices. They include:
✅ Weight – for a newborn, you will carry them most of the time to and from the car. It is therefore important you consider the weight of your kid. The car seat you buy must be able to hold your child’s weight.
✅ Age – For newborns to kids around 12 years, a car seat is very essential because by then a normal adult car seat will not fit since the straps may be too large.
✅ Height – when your child sits down, his head must be well supported by the car seat but if in case he has outgrown it he may not be protected if you crash.
✅ Type of trips – there is a big difference between a short and long trip. As a parent, you will surely never want your kid to be exhausted because the car seat was not good enough. Make sure that your kid will be okay in it even when traveling for miles.
✅ Comfort – this is a very important aspect in everyone traveling. Your child must be comfortable the whole time to prevent any unnecessary injuries to his back or neck because of a badly designed car seat. The padding must be comfortable.
✅ Proper installment – it is also crucial that you install the car seat properly to make sure that your baby will be protected at all times. Failure to install well might lead to it dislocating and your kid getting very hurt.
✅ Other uses – if you are planning to remove it from one car to another or use it to carry your kid around then make sure that it can be unbuckled easily.
Time to use a car seat
There are various car seats your kid can use from infantry up to 12 years. It is important to clearly check the car seat’s guideline because for some you may be required to use it up to a certain age. The car seats that are used in many stages are always expensive but worth it if you don’t plan to buy different car seats for different stages. You can always replace it if you notice that it is not more effective or your kid can’t feel comfortable anymore.
Buying a second-hand car seat
It is not advisable that you buy a second-hand car seat because it may have many shortcomings which you may not see. If it has been involved in an accident then the chances of being damaged will be high and in that case, it will not be ideal to use since it will be very ineffective. Some baby products may be good if it is second hand but for a car seat, it is not recommended. Things you should consider in a second-hand car seat includes:
-Whether it has been in a crash
-If proper use labels are still there
-Has been ever recalled?
Car seat buying tips
If you have decided that you will bey your kid different car seat for different stages, then make sure to use it maximally without rushing to another stage. A rear-facing car seat is ideal for infants who are at least 15 months for up to 6 or 7 years depending on whether their height and weight can still allow it or if the model’s specifications say so. A car with an Isofix system will be the best with rear-facing seat since fitting it is easy and your kid is protected from crash injuries. If you have more than two kids then buy one that can fit at the back for the younger one so that he can sit in the middle.
Make sure to regularly check your kid’s height and weight to ensure that the car seat still fits perfectly and is effective. One that is compatible with your car is a must to have. The best thing to do is to buy one with Isofix system to make sure installment is easy and to avoid attachment of seat belt. You can read a comprehensive review of the best infant car seats for small cars.