We our a family restaurant and we just love it when we see Mom and Dad bring their little ones to dine with us. However, it is important to always say safe when travelling in the car, even to your local establishment. Most car accidents happen within 10 miles of the home, so even the shortest trip can present you with dangerous consequences. Making sure you children ride in a properly secure car seat is imperative no matter how brief they are in there.
With so many car seat options out there, it may seem overwhelming to make sure you get the perfect one for your family. So to help you make the right decision, here is some information about the different types of child safety seats for your family. This is something that we recently shared with some of our staff, hopefully it will help some of the new parents out there as well.
Infant Car Seats
These seats are meant for newborns to 1 year babies weighing a maximum of 22 pounds and 26 inches in length. They have an internal harness which safely straps your child to the carrier, which is snapped to a base secured to your car. This seat has to be installed in the car facing backwards.
Though you may be able to use this seat for only a few months, say 9 months or slightly longer based on the car seat model, it’s worth the money. They give a comfortable and snug fit to your baby’s body when compared to the larger convertible car seat.
- You need not wake your baby when you get out of your car as you can carry your baby around in the seat.
- Most infant seats fit into the grocery cart’s basket so you can safely transport your baby while you do your shopping.
- Infant seats can snap into a compatible infant car seat frame or be used as a stroller.
- It can get tiring carrying your baby around in the car seat, as she/he’s heavy, and it gets even more difficult as he/she gains more weight.
- Based on how fast your baby grows, you may be able to use this car seat for only 6 to 9 months.
Convertible Child Seats
These are the most popular type of safety seats for a number of reasons. One thing to keep in mind is that you do not have to buy the top rated convertible car seat in order to find something that will be both comfortable and secure for your little one. There are lots of quality options available no matter what type of budget you may be trying to keep.
These types of seats are meant for both infants and children up to 65 lbs. They are used rear-facing till your baby is a year old and weighs at least 20 pounds. The seat can be turned around to face forward and adjusted to accommodate an older child. They have no base to snap into as it attaches directly to your car through the car’s LATCH system. These are perhaps the most popular type of seat because their versatility gives parents the option to buy just one seat for the first few years. This is less of a hassle and more economical in the long run. These seats are typically heavier so moving them between different vehicles is a little bit more of a challenge, but it is worth it for a lot of parents.
There are several reputable manufacturers that make safe and reliable car seats, including convertible safety seats. Britax, Graco, Evenflo, Diona, and Recaro are just some of the brand names that you should look into. Britax makes some of the best models around and their Marathon line had been rated as the best convertible car seat of 2016. Now they did have a setback when some of their car seats were recalled because of a latch issue, but they were quick to inform parents and send out a quick fix for the problem.
Graco and Evenflo are great options for anyone on a tighter budget while Diona and Recaro make more high end models with plush materials and advanced safety features. Research is always the best option to find the perfect seat for your family.
Once your child is 4 years old, or about 40 pounds heavy, he/she graduates to a booster seat and has to ride in it till a seat belt fits them properly. Booster seats correctly position a lap and shoulder belt on the child’s baby to prevent any possible injury to internal organs.
Once again, there are various booster seats to choose from. So here’s a brief intro to all of them.
Combination booster seat is a combined forward-facing car and booster seat. The difference here lies in using its harness straps for smaller children and then removing them to use the seat belt once the child is older or bigger. These seats are best for children who have outgrown the convertible car seat but aren’t ready for a traditional booster using the vehicle’s seat belt. The seat can be transformed into a regular booster seat when the child meets the required height and weight.
High back booster seat gives your child the height needed to safely use your vehicle’s seat belt. The seat’s lap and shoulder belt rests on the child’s strong hip and shoulder bones instead of their more susceptible soft internal organs. The seat’s high back protects your child’s neck from possible whiplash and also provides them with space to rest their head on either side while sleeping.
Backless booster seat also uses both the lap and shoulder belts to fasten your child. They are thus safer than the high back booster seats as your child sits against the vehicle seat. However they don’t provide any head or sleeping support to your child. They are more popular with older kids as they are less conspicuous than the high back seats.
All these booster seats provide your child with the necessary safety while in your car,. Their only disadvantage is that your child may resist using a safety seat for as long as required. The seats are meant for children aged 4-8 years, based on the seat’s model and the child’s height and weight.
Just remember, there is no need to rush to the restaurant. It is easy to loose track of time and try to make up for it on the road, but no meal is so important that you put your family in jeopardy. Drive safe, drive slow, and get everyone there safely.