Buying a good quality car seat is one of the most important things you should invest in. A good quality car seat ensures safety and comfort for your child. You will be using this seat until your child reaches the age of 10 or above.
In order to help you select the best car seats, we have compiled a list of some of the safest car seats available in the market. All car seats are required to meet federal safety1 standards in a 30/mph crash test. And we have to make sure that the listed seats match the required safety parameters, after all, it is a matter of child’s safety.
Table of Contents
- 1 Best Car Seat Reviews 2021
- 1.1 1- Cybex Aton 2 – Best among All
- 1.2 2. Britax Boulevard Clicktight ARB: Best convertible car seat
- 1.3 3. Chicco Keyfit 30: Affordable Car Seat
- 1.4 4. Graco 4Ever DLX: Best 4-in-1 Car Seat
- 1.5 5. Evenflo Gold SensorSafe EveryStage: Best extended rear-facing car seat
- 1.6 6. Primo Viaggio Nido
- 1.7 7. Safety 1st onBoard 35 Air+: Best Budget Car Seat
- 1.8 8. Britax B-Safe 35 – Best Infant Car Seat
- 1.9 9. Nuna Pipa Lite: Best Lightest Car Seat
- 1.10 10. UPPAbaby Mesa: Easy to Use
- 2 Additional car seats
- 3 How effective are car Seats? Car crash stats
- 4 States that require rear-facing Seats
- 5 States with lowest and highest child crash fatality rates
- 6 Additional findings on Car Crashes
- 7 How to keep your children safe in the car?
- 8 Different types of child safety restraints!
- 9 Conclusion
- 10 FAQ
Best Car Seat Reviews 2021
Cybex Aton 2
|It is a very lightweight and easy-to-use car seat. The lining is machine washable. Excellent crash-test results.||View On Amazon
Britax Boulevard Clicktight ARB
|It comes with an extended rear-facing. showed excellent crash test results and it’s very easy to use.||View On Amazon
Chicco Keyfit 30
|Relatively lightweight car Seat and compatible with at least 8 strollers. It has machine-washable padding.||View On Amazon
Graco 4Ever DLX
|It is a 4-in-1 car seat that supports rear-facing up to 49 inches and 40 lbs. It comes with 2 cup holders.||View On Amazon
Evenflo Gold SensorSafe EveryStage
|All-in-one model for infants to 10-year-olds. It has live installation support.||View On Amazon
Primo Viaggio Nido
|Good performance in third-party crash tests. It is relatively lightweight and very easy to use.||View On Amazon
Safety 1st onBoard 35 Air+
|It comes with a lightweight infant carrier. Got good scores on head injury criteria. Very easy to Use.||View On Amazon
Britax B-Safe 35
|It comes with SafeCenter Latch for easy installation and SafeCell Impact Protection. The cover is easily removable.||View On Amazon
Nuna Pipa Lite
|It is the Lightest car seat on the market. Comes with a Load leg. It is Compatible with around 15 strollers. 7-year expiration||View On Amazon
|Perfect score on NHTSA’s ease of use evaluation
Machine-washable padding. It is compatible with around 10 strollers.
|View On Amazon
1- Cybex Aton 2 – Best among All
Cybex Aton is one of the best yet affordable car seats with a load leg. The load leg base helps in stabilizing the car seat and has the ability to reduce crash forces by 50%. It comes with a smart-tech harness chest clip with SensorSafe technology that gives you alerts whenever there is an unsafe situation.
There is a linear Side-impact protection system installed that helps to absorb around 25% more impact forces in a collision.
- It gives excellent performance in crash tests
- Lightweight infant carrier that weighs only 9.3 lbs.
- The lining is machine washable.
- It is very easy to use.
- It is not very great for extended rear-facing.
- Compatible strollers are a bit expensive.
As far as the Ease of Use is concerned, the Aton 2 has earned a score of four out of five on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) ease of use report. Most of the comments were related to rethreading the harness straps and that manual’s seatbelt section isn’t very thorough.
The Cybex Aton 2 can easily accommodate a child who is up to 30 inches tall and between 4 and 35 pounds. It is assumed that most of the children will outgrow this restriction by the time they passed their first birthday. Due to this height restriction, it is a little impractical to buy Cybex Aton 2 for long-term use.
There is an Add a version to Aton 2 which is called Aton M whose features are as follows;
- The headrest that adjusts to 11 positions
- Extra-large foldaway sun canopy
- A SafeLock base.
2. Britax Boulevard Clicktight ARB: Best convertible car seat
The Britax Boulevard Clicktight ARB is one of the best convertible car seats on our list. As the name suggests it comes with a Clicktight Installation system which is considered one of the safest and simplest technology. You just need to open the front of the car seat, feed the seat belt through the indicated path, and click the seat shut – that’s how simple it is.
In order to make it safer for the children, it has a SafeCell impact protection system which includes a steel frame, energy-absorbing base, V-shaped tether in order to minimize seat rotation, and staged release stitches that help in reducing the forward movement in a crash. It has got excellent crash test results2.
- It comes with an extended rear-facing
- It has excellent crash test results
- Very easy to use
- Comes with an Anti-rebound bar (an excellent safety feature)
- It is a bit expensive
- No removable infant carrier
- There are no cup holders
- Hand-wash only
There is an anti-rebound bar that is padded in order to reduce the crash’s force and helps in keeping the seat stabilized.
The Britax Boulevard Clicktight ARB doesn’t have a removable infant carrier, some of the parents may not like that. However, it can be transformed into a forward-facing seat that can easily accommodate toddlers up to 65 pounds.
The padding used on ARB is not washer-friendly, although, you may buy a slightly cheaper Britax Boulevard Clicktight model without the integrated anti-rebound bar and then choose a SafeWash fabric – in that way the padder can be washed or dry cleaned easily. Then you may purchase an anti-rebound bar accessory and attach that to your clicktight.
Britax Boulevard vs. Advocate vs. Marathon
Britax offers two more convertible seats; the one is called Britax Advocate Clicktight and the other is called Britax Marathon Clicktight. They both differ in terms of price, side-impact technology, and third-party crash test performance. We have chosen to add Britax Boulevard because we think it is the maximum you can get in that price bracket.
3. Chicco Keyfit 30: Affordable Car Seat
Chicco keyfit 30 is the best affordable car seat available in the market that costs you around $200 only. It has performed the best in the head-injury criteria portion of the third-party crash tests as compared to other models listed above.
It has a removable head and body support which helps in accomodating newborns and smaller infants. It has a SuperCinch tightener that lets you easily achieve a tight and secure fit. You can easily level this car seat with its spring-loaded leveling foot, along with its two easy-to-read bubble levels.
- Relatively lightweight car Seat
- Compatible with at least 8 strollers
- Machine washable padding
- Excellent Crash test results
- Babies can outgrow it pretty quickly
- Instructions labels are unclear
It is an ideal weight car seat that weighs only 9.5 pounds. Chicco Keyfit 30 is compatible with at least eight strollers. It has washable paddling that is washed on a cold cycle and hung up to dry.
Chicco Keyfit 30 is designed for babies who weigh 30 pounds or less that means your baby is going to outgrow this model soon. As far the ease of use is concerned, this model has earned 4 out of 5 points.
4. Graco 4Ever DLX: Best 4-in-1 Car Seat
Graco 4Ever DLX is a 4-in-1 car seat that means it is going to be usable for your child from infancy till the age of 10 or whenever they reach the weight of 120 pounds. It is very much popular among parents and has pretty good performance in third-party crash tests despite no anti-rebound device.
Graco 4Ever is designed to protect your little one from frontal, side, rear, and rollover crashes. It comes with a simple safe adjusted harness system that lets you adjust the height of your harness and headrest to 10 positions in one motion.
- 4-in-1 car seat
- Supports rear-facing up to 49 inches and 40 lbs
- It has machine-washable padding
- The third-party crash results are pretty impressive.
- 2 cup holders
- The ease of use is a bit questionable.
- They give only one year warranty for a product designed for 10 years.
There is around 6 position recline that keeps your child comfortable while traveling. It can easily accommodate children up to 49 inches and 40 pounds in a rear-facing position.
As far the safety is concerned, Graco 4Ever is among the best chest acceleration and the third-best head injury criteria score from third-party sites.
Upgrade for an anti-rebound bar
In order to add some extra safety to this car seat, you may consider the Graco Premier 4Ever DLX, it is a bit expensive but comes with an anti-rebound bar.
5. Evenflo Gold SensorSafe EveryStage: Best extended rear-facing car seat
Evenflo Gold SensorSafe EveryStage is one of the best all-in-one car seats that can easily be transformed from a rear-facing seat to a forward-facing seat and a booster seat. Your children can safely sit in the rear-facing position until they are over 48 inches tall or weigh more than 50 lbs: which is around till the age of 4 years old.
It has a smart chest clip and a wireless receiver connected to an app on your phone, that gives you real-time updates on your child’s comfort level and well-being. If your baby gets unbuckled from their car seat, is too warm, or has spent too much time without movement, you will receive a real-time alert on your phone. These real-time alerts are pretty handy when you are traveling on long journeys.
- All-in-one model for infants to 10-year-olds
- Live installation support
- Easy to use
- Machine-washable paddings
- Two cup holders.
- The booster configuration is less easy to use
According to Evenflo company, the EveryStage performs twice as well as federal minimum standards of safety. It comes with removable padding that can be washed into a washer or a dryer. It comes with two cup holders as well.
The Primo Viaggio Nido is a premium-priced car seat; however, it includes a load leg and an anti-rebound bar in the package. It is made in Italy. The headrest of Viaggio Nido adjusts to 6 different positions with no re-threading.
It has an Energy-absorbing EPS foam throughout the shell and head panel that protects the infant head and torso from impact forces. The load leg of this car seat can be adjusted to 10 different positions which come with an Energy management foot that absorbs energy by crumpling upon impact. Moreover, its anti-rebound bar gives great safety in case of collusion.
Viaggio Nido comes with an extendable pagoda hood that can be extended further with the help of a zipper keeping your child safe and protected.
There are dual-stage cushions where Stage 1 is for infants around 4 lbs and up which offers extra support on the newborn’s neck and bottom. Stage 2 supports growing baby. The cushions are made up of Fresco Jersey soft and breathable fabric to keep the baby cool.
- Good performance in third-party crash tests
- Relatively lightweight
- Easy to use
- 7-year expiration
- Not very easy to use
- Poor stroller compatibility
- Hand wash only
The Primo Viaggio Nido exceeds the federal standards for head injury criteria by 55%% and exceeds chest acceleration standards by over 20%.
It is a perfect car seat for children up to 35 pounds or 32 inches tall.
The main drawback of this car seat is that it is not very easy to according to NHTSA. The report states that some of the labels are missing and some parts come loose during the rethreading process.
7. Safety 1st onBoard 35 Air+: Best Budget Car Seat
Safety 1st onBoard 35 Air+ is one of the best budget car seats available in the market. It is designed to provide five layers of safety. Your child is further protected by AirProtect advanced side-impact protection and GCell HX patented race car foam from crash energy absorption. It can fit infants from four pounds to toddlers of 35 pounds in rear-facing configuration.
Safety 1st onBoard 35 Air+ is crash-tested from every angle. There is also a reinforced handle that adds to its stability. It has also a removable infant carrier that weighs only 9.4 pounds.
As far the Ease of Use is concerned, it is scored five out of five on the NHTSA’s ratings. Its only criticism was harness must be rethreaded and the labels lack some helpful diagrams. It comes with a 5-point harness that can adjust easily from the front of the car and features four harness heights and three buckle locations.
- Lightweight infant carrier
- Washer- and dryer
- Good scores on head injury criteria
- Easy to Use
- Poor Stroller compatibility
- Below average chest acceleration testing score
- Hand wash only
Although the safety of 1st onBoard 35 Air+ passes the federal minimum standard for chest acceleration reduction, it still scores low as compared to its competition in the market. It is just 10% more than the rating specified by the federal standards. On the other, it is 60% better than federal standards for head injury criteria which is great in the market.
8. Britax B-Safe 35 – Best Infant Car Seat
Britax B-Safe 35 is one of the best infant car seats available on the market. It comes with a layer of side impact protection, steel frame, and impact-absorbing base that makes it a safer choice for infants.
You can use a safe center latch or built-in seat belt lock-offs in order to secure the infant car seat. It is a complete travel system-ready car seat that is compatible with Britax Be-agile, Be-free, Be-mobile, Be-ready strollers using the built-in adapters. It is also compatible with all BOB single and Dual-lie strollers.
- It comes with SafeCenter Latch for easy installation
- SafeCell Impact Protection
- Easily removable cover
- Leveling the base is a bit tough
- Below average chest acceleration testing score
- Hand wash only
Britax B-Safe 35 can easily fit 4 to 35 pounds child with rear-facing. It comes with a spring-assisted recline and dual level indicators that help in finding the proper installation angle. There are also built-in lock-offs in order to snug vehicle seat belt installation.
9. Nuna Pipa Lite: Best Lightest Car Seat
Nuna Pipa Lite is one of the most expensive car seats available in the market; however, it is also the lightest of all. It only weighs 5.75 pounds when measured separately from the infant inlay and the sunshade. Nuna Pipa Lite comes with a load leg for improved safety.
If buying a lightweight car seat is your number one priority then only you should go for the Nuna Pipa Lite. As it doesn’t have much more features to justify the price. The weight limit is also lower. Moreover, it doesn’t exceed the minimum federal standards for chest acceleration in a crash test (60 g-units). Although, it is far better in head injury criteria of federal standards that is over 50%.
- It is the lightest car seat in the market
- Load leg
- Compatible with 15 strollers
- 7-year expiration
- Rarely available in the market
- It is a bit expensive
- A bit difficult to use
- Bad scores on chest acceleration
- Hand wash only
As far as the NHTSA’s rating is concerned, Nuna Pipa Lite has earned only four points. As per the report, the labels and instructions were missing, unclear, or incomplete, and it only had two reclining positions.
The Nuna Pipa Lite is compatible with around 15 different strollers.
10. UPPAbaby Mesa: Easy to Use
The UPPABaby Mesa is the cart seat that has got a perfect score on NHTSA’s ease of use evaluation. It comes with a Smart Secure system that lets you install the seats in seconds. There is an adjustable no-rethread headrest with integrated side impact protection along with storage pockets for harness buckles.
UPPAbaby Mesa can easily be attached to VISTA and CRUZ strollers without adapters. The fabric of the seats is removable and washable. It is a rear-facing car seat that weighs only 10.4 pounds. It can accommodate children until they are 32 inches tall or weigh 35 pounds.
- Perfect score on NHTSA’s ease of use evaluation
- Machine-washable padding
- Relatively lightweight
- Compatible with around 10 strollers
- Average third-party crash scores
It comes with an expiration date of seven years. The UPPAbaby Mesa has passed federal safety standards as all car seats for sale in the US have. Unlike other car seats, it has got the average scorings only. On head injury criteria, it has scored only 511, and on chest acceleration in third-party tests, it has scored 52 g-units.
The padding of UPPAbaby Mesa is machine washable on a cold cycle, but, you have to lay it flat to dry.
Additional car seats
Doona Infant Car Seat: Best for stroller conversion
If you are a parent who likes to consider a car seat that can be easily converted into a stroller then the Doona infant car seat is the one you are looking for. The wheels of the strollers are tucked up under the infant carrier which can be opened for converting it into a stroller.
- The padding is machine-washable
- Convertible car seat into a stroller
- Easy to use
- Barely passed the federal safety standards.
- It is a bit heavy.
As far as the Ease of Use is concerned, it has got a score of 5 from NHTSA. However, it has barely passed the minimum federal safety standards according to the test of third-party. It comes with an anti-rebound bar that prevents the car seat from lurching towards the rear of the car. For side-impact protection, it has got two layers of plastic and foam.
In the price range of $550, you get two products – a car seat and a stroller. Since it is heavy so you won’t be using it as a carrier; therefore, there are wheels to tackle this problem.
Britax One4Life is a 4-in-1 car seat that is directly competing with the Evenflo Gold SensorSafe Everystage. Both of these seats have extended rear-facing capabilities and comes with machine washable paddings. It is almost similar to the SensorSafe, but you have to $100 more for this.
The Britax Endeavours is an infant car seat that is slightly better than the Britax B-Safe ultra in third-party crash tests. This car seat is a bit heavy and it is only compatible with two strollers.
It has moisture-wicking and machine-washable padding which are its main feature.
The Clek Foonf is designed for children who weigh at least 14 pounds which means you will have to buy a new seat for your newborn. It is a bit impractical to pay $530 for reduced usage.
As far as the third-party results are concerned, Clek Foonf has got the best results in terms of chest acceleration. However, the injury criteria are basic.
Graco Snugride Snuglock
The Graco Snugride Snuglock is the rear-facing infant car seat. It is the only infant car seat that has performed pretty well in the chest-acceleration test of the third party; although, showed average results in head-injury portions.
It can accommodate kids up to 35 inches and comes with machine-washable padding. It is very easy to use. You can only use it with the Graco or Joovy strollers.
I would recommend you to spend some extra bucks and get a Graco 4Ever for yous yourself as it will last 10 times longer and have pretty great crash-test results.
How effective are car Seats? Car crash stats
These are pretty rough stats that we are sharing with you guys; however, it is important for you to know that how many children suffer due to these car crashes.
In 2019, around 495 children aged under 10 and 433 children ages between 10 to 15 died in car accidents. Around 189,000 children from infancy to age 15 were injured during such accidents.
In old times, the numbers were even worse. The overall decrease can’t be connected to a single cause; however, restraint systems play an important role in the decrease.
According to a study, a properly installed child safety seat can reduce fatal injuries by 71% for infants and 54% for toddlers in standard passenger cars. It is estimated that at least 11,606 children under the age of 4 have been saved by car seats between 1975 and 2017.
However, not every parent buckles their kid while traveling. In 2018, around 35% of all children under the age of 15 who died in car accidents were unrestrained. Therefore, child car seat laws exist so that parents use the correct restraint systems for the longest possible time, it varies from state to state.
States that require rear-facing Seats
There are certain states that require rear-facing seats because they provide better protection in front-end collisions. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends placing children in a rear-facing car seat for as long as possible and only switch to front-facing seats when the child outgrows the car seat’s rear-facing weight and height restrictions.
If you live in any of the below states, then you are required by law to keep your child in a rear-facing style until he/she reaches a certain age.
Rear-facing seat required
|Alabama||Until 1 year or 20 lbs.|
|Alaska||Until 1 year or 20 lbs.|
|California||Until 2 years or 40 lbs. or 40 in.|
|Colorado||Until 1 year or 20 lbs.|
|Connecticut||Until 2 years or 30 lbs.|
|District of Columbia||Until 2 years or 40 lbs. or 40 in.|
|Illinois||Until 2 years or 40 lbs. or 40 in.|
|Iowa||Until 1 year or 20 lbs.|
|Louisiana||Until 2 years|
|Nebraska||Until 2 years and outgrown car seat’s height and weight limits|
|New Jersey||Until 2 years and 30 lbs.|
|New Mexico||Until 1 year and outgrown car seat’s height and weight limits|
|New York||Until 2 years and outgrown car seat’s height and weight limits|
|Oklahoma||Until 2 years and outgrown car seat’s height and weight limits|
|Oregon||Until 2 years|
|Pennsylvania||Until 2 years and outgrown car seat’s height and weight limits|
|Puerto Rico||Until 2 years or 30 lbs.|
|Rhode Island||Until 2 years or 30 lbs.|
|South Carolina||Until 2 years or 30 lbs.|
|South Dakota||Until 2 years and outgrown car seat’s height and weight limits|
|Tennessee||Until 1 year or 20 lbs.|
|Vermont||Until 1 year or 20 lbs.|
|Virgin Islands||Until 1 year or 20 lbs.|
|Virginia||Until 2 years and outgrown car seat’s height and weight limits|
|Washington||Until 2 years and outgrown car seat’s height and weight limits|
|Wisconsin||Until 1 year or 20 lbs.|
We would recommend you to follow the guidelines issued by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
States with lowest and highest child crash fatality rates
It doesn’t mean that the state with stricter laws correlates with lower fatality rates.
According to the NHTSA, fatal car crashes involving children ages from 0 to 9 years happened most frequently in the following 10 states in 2018. The number shown is representative of every 100,000 children in each state, i.e; for every 100,000 children in Alaska 7.5 were killed in a car accident3.
New Mexico (4.01)
National fatality rate: 1.70
Washington, D.C. (0.0)
New Jersey (0.74)
Additional findings on Car Crashes
There are some additional findings on car crashes that we have discovered from various sources and some of them are worth mentioning in this guide.
- Fatal car accidents involving children have decreased by 61% since 1975.
- In 2018, 1038 children died in car accidents which are around 10% less as compared to 2017.
- In 2019, Three children died while riding the school bus.
- The use of car seats for children between 4 and 7 years old dropped from 91% in 2011 to 86.2% in 2019.
- Idaho allows children to ride out of their safety seat, if they are held by an attendant for nursing or to meet another physiological need.
- In 2018, children aged under 1 year died in car accidents; among them 17% were unrestrained. The percentage of unrestrained children in fatal accidents increases to 25% for children 1 to 3 years, 32% for children 4 to 7, and 43% for children 8 to 12 years old.
How to keep your children safe in the car?
One of the basic things to prevent fatalities while driving is to drive with caution. We would recommend you use the right safety restraint for your kid. We have shared some of the best car seats above with you which are comfortable and can meet the needs of your kid. The right seat should match their height, weight, and age. Here are some car safety tips 4.
- You need to follow these basic car seat dos and don’ts for your guidance.
- Always read the instructions completely before installing your child’s car seat for the very first time.
- Always make sure that your child is perfectly fit and secured before starting the ride. The car seat should not move more than 1 inch from side to side.
- Always register new child seats with the manufacturer. This will keep you updated with the related news.
- You should always use the top tether when securing a front-facing car seat.
- Make sure that your kid is always buckled up.
- You should never let your kid ride without safety restraints.
- Never let your kid ride in another vehicle without proper safety restraints.
- You should never secure a rear-facing car seat in the front passenger seat.
- Never use an expired, recalled, or damaged car seat.
- You should never buckle up your kid while they are wearing a thick jacket or coat as it will make the seat less effective. You may use the jacket or outerwear as a blanket, but never buckle up onto them.
- Never let kids under 13 ride in the front seat. You need to avoid letting them ride on vehicles with no back seat or active front-seat passenger airbags.
You may ask for a help of a Certified Child Passenger Safety Technician in your community to double-check that you have installed the seat correctly. You can find a car seat inspection station in your area or learn how to become a licensed car seat technician.
Different types of child safety restraints!
It is very much important for you to ensure that your child fits the car seat correctly. There are various types of convertible car seats that we have listed above: these convertible car seat changes with your child’s growth stages. If you don’t want to use the same seat for too long then purchasing a new one is always an option.
No matter what seat you buy, the best car seat will be the one that is correctly installed. In order to talk more about the properly installed car seats, I am sharing some of the different types of child safety restraints with you.
Infants to 3 years old: Toddlers and babies up to 3 years need to sit in a rear-facing seat until they reach the specified weight limit of the car seat. There are various convertible car seat models available that can fit a child from infancy to 3 years old. Usually, an infant car seat has a shorter time span as it can fit the child up to 12 months only, whereas, the convertible models can easily fit children up to 35 pounds (although it varies as per the model).
4 to 7 years old: When your child reaches the age of 4 to 7 years old then the forward-facing car seat is ideal for them. These seats are designed to fit children that weigh between 40 to 60 pounds. You need to make sure to fasten the top tether of your car seat to the vehicle’s seat.
8 to 12 years old: In this age bracket, a booster seat is a perfect car seat for your children. You may select a belt-positioning booster or a backless booster seat depending on the height and weight of your child. Booster car seats are perfect for kids that weigh between 40 to 80 pounds and have a height of 4 feet 9 inches.
12 years and more: When your kid reaches the age of 13 or is 4 feet 9 inches in height then they can fit in an adult seat in the back seat of your vehicle.
Among all the best car seats listed above, we have picked the Cybex Aton 2; however, others do worth your time too.
All the car seats listed have passed the federal safety tests and some of them have some extra features like load leg and an anti-rebound bar. So you can choose various types of such vehicle seats above.
Q. Infant vs convertible car seat – which one to choose?
A. The infant car seats are the only seat that can be detached from the base; however, your kid is going to outgrow the infant seat in the year. Therefore, you should consider buying a convertible car seat which is a sensible and economical choice.
Q. How do I know if I’ve installed the car seat correctly?
A. Each car seat has different installation methods; therefore, it is important that you follow the instruction manual religiously. These manuals will help you install the car seat correctly. However, if you want help in installing or just want to make sure that you have installed it correctly or not then you may take your car to your local fire or police department to get help from a certified Child Passenger Safety technician. You can find a Child Passenger Safety Technician near you here.
Q. How to clean a car seat?
A. You may follow the Center for Disease Control’s guidelines for both cleaning and disinfecting your car seat.
- Make sure you use the disposal gloves before starting the cleaning and disinfecting process.
- Remove the car seat and shake it upside down and then vacuum to remove all crumbs.
- Then refer to your car seat’s manual to check that which part can be machine-washed. DO NOT machine wash the harness.
- If you have a model which cannot be machine washed then use the scrub coth surfaces with a detergent and water. Never use bleach for cleaning. You should avoid soaking materials enough to risk mold or rust.
- Use disinfecting wipes on all the plastic and metal areas.
- Use warm water and gentle soap for cleaning the straps and buckle. Do not scrub vigorously or use harsh chemicals as it may lead to lower strap strength.
- Air dry all the pieces of your car seat separately.
- Once it is completely dried, reassemble the car seat and fit it in.
Q. Can I take my car seat on an airplane?
A. Most of the infant car seats are compatible with FAA standards; however, I would recommend you to check your car seat’s manual for that. Moreover, if you have converted your car seat into a booster seat then you may not use it on a plane because these seats need a cross-body belt in order to function effectively.
Q. How long should I use a rear-facing seat for my Child?
A. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that children can ride in a rear-facing seat as long as possible. Most of the rear-facing car seat models have a weight limit of 40 pounds and allow your child to ride in a rear-facing car seat till they are two.
Q. When should I switch a car seat from a convertible to a booster seat?
A. Once your child has outgrown the forward-facing height or weight restrictions (when they are 5 years old ideally) and he/she can fit in a booster seat then you may consider buying a booster seat.
- Gravitz, Lauren, The Washington Post, “Knockoff Car Seats Are Infiltrating the Market, and They Could Be Deadly,” November 5, 2019. Accessed June 30, 2021.
- Spurrier, Juliet, MD & Wend Schmitz, Baby Gear Lab, “Best Infant Car Seat with Crash Tests of 2021,” June 17, 2021. Accessed June 30, 2021.
- National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, “Traffic Safety Facts Annual Report Tables – Table 69: Vehicle Occupants Killed and Injured, by Age Group and Vehicle Type,” May 25, 2021. Accessed July 1, 2021.
- Mayo Clinic, “Car seat safety: Avoid 9 common mistakes,” October 21, 2020. Accessed July 1, 2021.