Every parent is always careful about the safety of their child. Anyway, when you are traveling or roaming around a lot, you need to make sure that your kid meets all the safety standards for good. Finding the best car seat for kids can make your kid’s journey worthwhile. Anyway, when you are a beginner in buying a baby car seat, chances are that you will not be able to reach a decision. Knowing the type of baby car seat and other information is always important. In this context, we are going to provide you with enough information so that you can reach a decision.
Do you actually need a Baby Car Seat?
Well, this is not mandatory that you get one for your kid. But getting a baby car seat will always keep your baby safe. While you are traveling, kids may sleep in an awkward position or sit awkwardly for a long period. A car seat simply keeps your kid to stay on put. Even when you are traveling via airplane, getting a good quality car seat is recommended by American Aviation Administration. So, it is your choice. But you know that doing something for your kid that makes them happy is always a big parenting win. So, getting one is important.
Types of Baby Car seat
There are mainly three types of car seats available. All of the varieties depend on what your baby’s age is. Also, the height and weight is a very important part of the consideration.
Rear-Facing Car Seat
Mainly infants weighing up from 22 to 35 pounds should use a rear-facing car seat. Anyway, this type of car seat is small in size and portable. Even the base of the car seat is detachable. This means that you can leave the base inside the car. Also, you should use a rear-facing car seat for your infant as long as you can. But after a certain amount of time, you need to change it to a convertible seat.
Convertible Car Seat
At first, you can use the convertible car seat as a rear-facing car seat. But after a certain amount of time, you can convert the seat to a convertible one. Mainly, these are called a forward-facing car seat. Some products come with a harness. When your baby is a toddler or a preschooler, going for a convertible car seat is a good option. People weighing up to 65 or more needs a convertible car seat. So, you can use these types of car seats as a rear-facing car seat, and after a certain amount of time – you can use it as a forward-facing one.
Booster seats are mainly for school-aged children. A kid whose weight crosses the weight limit of a front-facing car seat, should get a booster seat. getting a booster seat mainly depends on the parent’s choice alone. When a kid’s height reaches 4 to 4.9 inches, they must get a booster seat. Booster seats are very heavy. You cannot detach the seat from your car. Also, you may need to purchase more than one seat if you travel by more than one car.
Forward-facing car seat
Forward-facing car seats are mainly for preschoolers or babies weighing to 65 pounds or less. But getting a convertible car seat will to the job just fine.
Which Car Seat is Suitable for What Age?
Choosing a car seat is tough. Not so tough when you know what you are looking for. Anyway, before choosing one, you need to know what type of car seat you would like. Depending on age and weight, you pick a car seat. The following part will discuss the age requirement of different types of a baby car seat.
- Birth to age 2: For kids whose age limit is 2 years or less than that, you need to get a rear-facing car seat. But you need to check the weight of your child first. If the car seat meets the required weight limit, you can get the model.
- Age 2 to 4 (Weight: 40 pounds or less): Using the forward-facing car seat is always the perfect choice.
- Age 4 to 8 (Height: 4 inches to 4.9 inches): In this time, you need to get a booster car seat.
Which one is the best choice – convertible car seat vs rear-facing car seat?
- A convertible car seat can be converted. It means when your child exceeds the weight or age limit of a rear-facing car seat, you should get a forward-facing car seat. When it exceeds the height and age limit of a forward-facing car seat, you need to get a booster car seat. But if you get a rear-facing car seat, after a certain period, you need to change the seat.
- You can use a convertible car seat for a long time. If it is a 3-in-1 car seat, then you can use it for your kid until the age limit of 8 years. If your kid reached the age of 8 and a height of 4.9 inches, they can use the car seat belt. But you will not get this benefit from a rear-facing car seat.
- Convertible car seats are larger and heavier. Also, the seat is not portable. On the other hand, a rear-facing car seat is lighter, smaller and portable.
- You cannot leave the base of the convertible car seat inside the car. After installing it, you cannot detach it with ease. But you can leave the rear-facing car seat inside the car.
- If you have to travel with two or more vehicles, you need to purchase separate car seats. But with a rear-facing car seat, you can install it on another car as long as you have a base inside the car.
- Convertible car seats can save you a lot of money and will last for a longer period. On the other hand, you can only use a rear-facing car seat until the age of 2 years.
Which one is better mainly depends on you.
What to look for the best baby car seat brand?
You know about the types and what to look for in a baby car seat. Anyway, what makes it a brand? When you are looking for a good quality brand, what are the main considerations? Is it just the price? We don’t think so. Here are the few considerations you should make while purchasing the best baby car seat stroller.
- The safety level: You are purchasing a baby car seat just for the safety of your child. So, the safety level is always going to be the priority. Every product sets their price limit depending on their cost and features. To increase the safety level, brands cannot go for cross-cutting. Anyway, the seat needs to meet the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 213.
- The 5-point harness: Checking out the 5-point harness is also important for you. Usually, normal seats come with a 3-point harness. On the other hand, a 5-point harness keeps the baby safer.
- Ratings: Yes, the ratings can be crucial. You know the customer is always right. Ratings are a great indicator of their choice or satisfaction. But now we are not talking about customer ratings. For brands, they like to make sure their product stands out from others. So, they try to gain a rating from the professional institution. Such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA). They provide a 5-star rating. Depending on the rating, purchase your baby car seat.
Some good tips on buying a baby car seat
There are always some key considerations before purchasing a good quality toddler car seat. Mainly, we are going to discuss them in this part of the content.
- Know your car: It is always a good thing to know about your own car. Reading your cars owner manual might help you in this case. You see, you can install a car seat using two techniques. First, you can install it via your seat belt or you use the LATCH system. But before going on with that, you need to know how you are going to install it. Will you use the belt, or just the LATCH system? But whatever you choose, make sure you check out if your vehicle is suitable for it or not.
- Measuring your car seat: This is also very important to check. Some car seat base can be large. If the car seat has a big base, it will not fit in any small car. So, checking that out is also a very important thing. Depending on the size of your backseat, you should get a car seat.
- Choose a convertible car seat: Choosing a convertible car seat is always an economic choice. You can use a convertible seat for a long time. We discussed convertible car seats earlier on this content. So, if you are stuck with a strict budget or cannot purchase different types of car seats – you should get a convertible car seat.
- Find the best baby car seat stroller combo: Getting a convertible car seat is great. But a stroller can always save you money and time. There are times when the baby falls asleep. So, if you want to move around the baby without disturbing its sleep, getting a car seat stroller will help. You will be able to find a combo pack with discount if you look carefully.
- Try to buy the latest one: Day by day, the safety standard is increasing. Even the car seat technology is trying to meet the standards. So, if you made up your mind on buying a toddler car seat, going for the latest model is always a good idea.
- Look for the most important features: When you are purchasing an infant car seat, you should always look for the better features. Try looking for a model that features a 5-point harness. Check out the safety rating, rating, side-impact protection, LATCH system compatibility, etc. Depending on the price point, when you are going for high-end car seats, look for some additional features.
- Easy to clean: Clean car seat is just as important as a safe car seat. Look for a car seat that is pretty safe for your child.
- Look for a car seat cover: Looking for a good quality car seat cover is important. This includes the health of your child. Some car seat models do not feature a separate base. Which means you need to leave the base behind. A car seat cover will keep the seat dirt free. You will find a lot of covers for baby car seat.
Tips on installing the toddler car seat
Many people are confused about installing a car seat. Some people cannot understand the process. Anyway, if you purchase a car seat that meets all your considerations, you are good to go. Still, following these tips will help you in the long run.
- Try to read the user manual as well as the car owner manual. You need to get a good idea of your car. After that, try learning about the car seat. Make sure you know how to use the LATCH system or how to use the car seat belts. Get a good idea before starting the installation process.
- Your child is always safe in the backseat. Until you reach the age of 13 or if she doesn’t reach the height of 4.9 inches – keep them in the back seat. So, you should install the toddler car seat in the backseat.
- Follow the instructions properly. If you want to adjust the seat at the right angle, look for the light indicator on it. Check the instruction manual t find out if the seat is installed at the right angle.
- Try to press the car seat tightly on the back seat. Always remember, the toddler car seat shouldn’t move more than 1 inch for side to side or forward direction.
Choosing the best baby car seat is a hassle. But it is not a hard nut to crack. Rather you should be focusing on some important considerations before purchasing your suitable car seat. It is the safety of your kid that you want. That is why we tried you to know all the considerations you need to make before purchasing your toddler car seat.