Conduct a Car Seat Check

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The other day I drove home one of my daughter’s friends and she laughed when she saw that my daughter was still in a car seat. My six year old is small and honestly has yet to complain about being in a car seat. My boys though I remember them being big and fighting me to sit in a booster seat with a seatbelt. I caved and probably moved them to the next size car seat before I should have.

Now I would never question another parent’s parenting skills but it does make me cringe when I see kids not properly buckled. I mean a proper car seat is something so easy to use and if it can great save your child’s life in an accident, why not use one?

Not sure what the right seat is for your child? Well according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the general guidelines are as follows:

  • Infant rear-facing:
    • Children under 1 year old.
    • Features a harness strap system and a cradle design to protect a child’s neck and spine in a crash.
  • Child rear-facing:
    • Children 1 to 3 years old.
    • Keep seat in a rear-facing position until child has reached height or weight maximum recommended by seat manufacturer.
  • Front-facing:
    • Children 4 to 7 years oldOR children under 4 years old who have outgrown their seat’s height and weight maximum.
    • Feature a tether strap system that is much safer than a standard seatbelt for young children.
  • Booster seat:
    • Children 8 to 12 years oldOR children under 8 years old who have outgrown their seat’s height and weight maximum.
    • Designed to add extra height so the car’s seat belt fits your child properly.

Now yes every state is different so you do want to make sure your following your state’s guidelines and it also depends on the car seat. One booster seat I have for example can be used at 40lbs. and another says 50lbs. – so yes break out the car seat manual and check. Luckily too car seats usually have stickers on them that explain weight and height limits.

Need help installing a car seat or not sure if you have yours properly installed. Cars.com has a great article on how they Conduct Car Seat Checks.

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Comments

  1. Good reminders for proper use of car seats for our grandchildren. Our 8 year old granddaughter is still in a booster seat and she never complains about it.

  2. 40 years ago car seats were not mandatory. Glad they are now.