You have precious cargo on board when driving with a baby, and it’s important to do anything and everything you can to mitigate risk and keep the baby safe. One of the best ways to safeguard your young passengers is to install child safety seats. Buying one is the first step, but the second and most important step is to ensure that the car seat is installed properly —which can be more difficult than you might think.
When purchasing the car seat, you’ll need to make sure you’re buying the right one for both the child and your vehicle. Not all seats fit properly in all vehicles, so it is important to do a little research before buying a product. Also make sure you understand the two main categories of safety seats: Rear-facing car seats are required for all children up to age 12 months, while convertible car seats can be modified for use as a child grows. Once you procure a suitable safety seat, the very first thing you should do is read the instruction manual to get a good sense of how it is supposed to be installed and how it functions. If you find the manual to be unclear, note that there are inspection stations throughout the country where an expert can help you ensure your seat is installed correctly. Visiting one of these stations may be well worth your time and effort.
Installation techniques will be specific to your particular car seat, but here are a few general guidelines to keep in mind:
Don’t take any chances with the safety of children in your vehicle. You can always get the seat inspected if you have any questions about it—and make sure to keep your car in good working order as well to ensure it’s as safe as possible!