If you’re like most parents, your child’s safety is of the utmost importance. There are many different types of car seats available, so it can be difficult to know which one is best for your child at each stage of childhood.
Our tips below will help provide you with the guidance you need to choose the best car seat for your child.
Understanding the Various Types of Car Seats
First, it’s important to have a good understanding of the different types of car seats available. Generally, these are the different types you’ll find on the market:
- Infant car seat
- Convertible seat
- Booster seat
- All-in-one car seat
- Toddler booster
Infant Car Seat
Most new parents start with this type of seat. It must be installed rear-facing and features a removable carrier that attaches to a base installed in the car.
This seat is best for newborns and smaller babies. It can be used for little ones from 4-40 pounds (lbs).
Most children outgrow these seats in height before weight. This happens when the crown of your child’s head is less than an inch from the top of the car seat’s carrier shell or when he or she exceeds the seat’s height limits.
This is the next step after the infant seat. Be prepared to buy a convertible seat before your child’s first birthday. These seats may be installed rear- or forward-facing. It is often recommended for your child to remain rear-facing longer as it is the safest option.
This type of seat can be used for children less than a year old who weigh less than 20 lbs. When rear-facing, these seats can be used for children up to 40 to 50 lbs.
When your child is ready, you may turn the seat around and use it facing forward until your child needs a booster seat.
A booster seat is unique because it utilizes the car’s own seat belt. This type of seat raises your child up in the car so that the seat belt first properly:
- Over the sternum
- Over the center of the collarbone (rather than the neck)
- Low across the upper thighs (instead of the abdomen)
All-in-One Car Seat
It can be tempting to buy an all-in-one seat, but they try to do so much more than one seat viably should. In addition to being less safe than the other types of seats, they are often bulky and heavy and may not fit smaller babies or smaller vehicles.
This type of seat works for children at the appropriate age, weight, and height limits for a forward-facing seat. These seats are best for children who weigh between 20 and 90 lbs when harnessed and 30 to 120 lbs in booster mode.
In the Event of a Crash, We’re Here for You
While you do your best to keep your child safe, sometimes accidents caused by others are unavoidable. If you or your child have been injured in an accident, we want to see that you recover the compensation you deserve. Don’t delay—reach out with your questions right away.