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What to Look for when Purchasing a Toddler Car Seat

September 14, 2016 - Help
What to Look for when Purchasing a Toddler Car Seat

Parenthood comes with many responsibilities and every parent strives to do everything that they think is best for their child. You obviously want to get everything that you think your child will need especially when they are still young. Comfort and safety are on top of your list.

Automobile travel is one of the most dangerous activities that involve children and that is why car accidents are one of the leading cause of death for young children. Therefore, toddler car seats are among the things that you will definitely buy because you want your child to be safe and as comfortable as they can every time you travel with them.

There are lots of models out there and it is not surprising that many parents are often overwhelmed when deciding on which one to go for, what helps is reading some toddler car seat reviews online. Below we listed some of the important things that you should look for as well.

1) Ease of use

378251651_888Installing a car seat should not be too difficult that you can’t actually do it. To get the seat that will be easy to install, check the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Those with a five-star rating system are much easier to use. Note that, the NTHSA ratings does not only take into account the content & clarity of the instructions manual but it also looks for how easy it is to install it in your car and secure the baby in it. The higher the ratings, the easier it is to use.

2) How comfortable is it

Ask-an-expertYou obviously want your child to be as comfortable as he can be and that is why you are purchasing a car seat in the first place. It will be very disappointing to come home with something that your child will not feel comfortable with yet you have spent your money on it.

You should take your child’s current height and weight measurements and this will guide you in your selection for the size. Next, look at the height and weight limit for each of the car seats that you are considering. As much as you will want some room for your child to grow, you should never put him in a seat that he is not physically ready for and that is why his current measurements are very important.

Comfort should therefore be a priority you can even take him with you to the store if possible. Let him test and make sure that his head & back are well supported by the seat. His arms should not be restrained and that is why you may want to go for a model with extra padding around the head & the sides and this will give your baby a better ride.

3) Easy to clean

Britax-AdvansafixChildren often mess a lot and the car seat will obviously get dirty within a very short time. Therefore, it is very important to have a car seat cover that can easily be removed and is machine washable. It is surprising that a number of car seat covers cannot be taken off and that is why you should check properly and make sure that it is detachable.

4) Adjustability

carseat_snow4aAs your child grows, you will have to adjust the harness and therefore, you should avoid seats that may complicate this. Look for car seats that can allow you to easily adjust the straps and also harness height from the front without any difficulty. In fact there are some models that have a one-hand belt adjustment with buckles that can easily be released and these are much safer. If possible, you can test-drive the adjustability to make sure that the motion is both fluid & easy.

5) LATCH (lower anchors & tethers for children)

carseat1This is a series of anchors & tethers that can directly attach to the seat of your vehicle instead of having to secure the toddler seat with a seat belt. All cars that were manufactured after 2000 are compatible with the LATCH system and this makes installation much easy and safer. New toddler seats that are front-facing often have connectors & hooks that latch onto the car’s anchors from the top of the car seat making installation a lot easier.

6) Budget

Car-Seat-Safety-101-sidebarYou definitely want to get the best car seat but it should be within your budget. Before you go out to purchase, do enough research and then choose the best from those that are within your budget.