We all want to keep our children safe, and when they are just babies it's important to find the right baby car seats for your vehicle. Unfortunately a lot of parents don't have enough knowledge about them outside of looking for the best price. Today we want to help you learn more about finding the right car seat, and what your choice should include.
When you first start doing your research we recommend addressing the basic safety issues. You need a baby car seat that can connect the seat belt securely. The right choice will come with a LATCH system or Lower Anchor and Tether for Children. This is the system that fastens the car seat to your car. Without it your child won't be as stable as you might think, even if the regular seat belt is being used.
You should also find a baby seat that offers the Versa Tether Energy Absorbing system. If by chance you have to stop suddenly, the VTEA system holds the seat in place. A great example is the Graco Nautilus 3-in-1 Car Seat. Basically it keeps the seat from moving unexpectedly up to 6 inches, which is also an integrated part of the LATCH system.
EPS foam is the same kind of foam that goes into bicycle helmets and is a great addition to baby car seats. In the event of an accident, this foam is designed to divert the forces of a crash away from your baby. It also puts an extra barrier between them and hard surfaces. Then there is the HUGS harness, which is used to prevent any kind of movement, such as if you are involved in a side car crash, or even hit from behind.
While each one of these safety measures are extremely important, the safety harness is on of the biggest benefits. When you have found the right baby seat for your car it should come with a 5-point system. It should also be form fitting to compact their range of motion, and it should latch down to the seat itself. Check out the Graco Nautilus 3-in-1 Car Seat to get an idea. Since children want to learn unintentionally, the latch should be out of reach when your child is harnessed into the seat.
There are other things you need to also consider when it comes to baby car seats as well. You want a car seat that has plenty of cushioning so your child is comfortable, one that is easy to keep clean such as the Graco 3-in-1 Car Seat. The cushioning should be able to be removed and tossed in the washer when it gets dirty, and the body of the seat should be easy to wipe down. With how long a child is required to be in a safety seat, some of the best products are three in one seats. These change from a rear facing baby seat, to front facing, and grow as your child does. The full seat transforms into a booster seat, and will support and secure your child until they are completely able to fit a regular seat belt.
While your budget may not allow you to spend hundreds of dollars on a car seat, that doesn't mean you should buy some cheap seat, or buy from a second hand store. Buying used seats, is not a good idea, because they have had a lot of use, and may not have the same structural integrity as a new seat. It is important to know that a good quality seat is going to range from one to two hundred dollars.
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