Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Car Seat Safety Tips

I was provided the Safety 1st Grow and Go car seat to review. All thoughts and opinions are that of my own.

1. Rear Facing as long as possible: It is now recommended that children are rear-facing until 2 years old, if not longer. This is the optimal protection for children's heads, necks, and spines. Check your car seat to learn about weight/length restrictions for rear-facing and forward-facing.

2. Read your Car Seat Manufacturer labels/instructions carefully: Each car seat is designed differently and has unique expiration dates {normally 6 years}, as well as height/weight limits. Be sure to understand when you are able to switch your child from rear to forward facing, when you are able/when you shouldn't use the latch system and top tether, as well as when the car seat expires and a new one will be needed.

3. If in a car accident, get a new car seat: Even if it is a small accident, it is always recommended that a new car seat is purchased for the child to make sure that it will work properly if there were an accident in the future. 

4. Know the car seat history: If you are purchasing a car seat from a friend or a garage sale, it is important that you know the history of the car seat, whether it was ever in any accidents, and when the car seat expires. This also accounts for the base.

5. Install it correctly: You can buy the best in the market, you can have the safest car out there, but if the car seat is not installed correctly, then you are not guaranteeing the safest outcomes in the case of a car accident for the child/children.

  • Inch test: Make sure that the car seat does not move more than an inch from side to side
  • Latch or seat belt: Do not use both together, but pick one or the other. Both are equally safe, but should not be used together 
  • Chest clip: make sure it is at the armpit level
  • Pinch at shoulder: if you are unable to pinch any excess strap, then it is correct. 
  • Check with a certified fire station, hospital, or dealership if uncertain if it installed correct.
6. Be aware of toys or other "car seat accessories" : Normally, car seat manuals will instruct you not to use extra toys or accessories that do not come or may be purchased with the car seat. This is because toys may actually harm a child during an accident, and other accessories may actually interfere with the car seat working properly. Always check and double check products that you purchase.

7. Don't forget the child: Sadly, roughly 30 children die every year due to heatstroke after being left in the car. Many tips have been provided to parents to help prevent this sort of tragic event which include: leaving your purse in the back or a shoe or phone, having a system in place with the sitter or daycare to call you if child doesn't arrive within 10-15 minutes, having a mirror in the back, and setting reminders on your phone.

Now that you have some of the important car seat safety tips, it's time to buy a car seat.

With so many out there that differ in design, versatility, and functionality, it's important that you choose the right car seat for your family, your lifestyle, and your car. We have owned a few car seats of our own and I've done extensive researching on car seats, so I can tell you that for a parent, there are definitely many great options out there for all types of needs and price ranges.

Thankfully, there is one out there that meets every check mark in regards to car seats and safety. The Safety 1st Go and Grow 3-in-1 car seat gives you all the options you would need to protect your child from birth to growth {from 5-100 pounds}. It has the functionality of both rear-facing and forward-facing, with rear-facing up to 40 pounds, and forward facing harness up to 65 pounds. The belt-positioning booster is then offered for children from 40-100 pounds. And then before you know it, your child will be ready for drivers-ed!

Some of the other great features that it offers as found on the Safety 1st website:
  • Side-impact protection
  • Harness holders: no more fishing around behind the child trying to find them!
  • 3 position recline
  • 2 cup holders
  • Less space in the backseat
  • QuickFit Harness
  • Exceeds Federal Safety Standards 
  • And many more!
And to top off all the great features and safety standards, the price is right. 

Watch this video to learn more about the Safety 1st Grow and Go!

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