Months old baby in car seat is it safe to use a secondhand car seat

Is it safe to use a secondhand car seat for my kid?

Did you know car seats have an expiration date? That’s right! So, how do you know if it’s safe to use a secondhand car seat? Here are some things to look out for when you’re looking to buy or borrow a used car seat.

Baby sleeping in car seatDo car seats have an expiration date?

So why do car seats expire? They aren’t food, there’s nothing that can get moldy if you take care of the seats properly. So, what’s the deal? Well, just like anything you use often, as a car seat gets older the wear and tear grow more prominent. Normally, this really wouldn’t be an issue with other items you use. However, since car seats are for the safety of your child, wear and tear isn’t a good thing. So, it’s important to pay attention to the expiration date. You can usually find it on the tag on the side of the car seat.

How to tell if a used car seat is unsafe

  • Ask the person you’re buying it from if the car seat has been in an accident
  • Look for dents and cracks
  • Check the expiration date
  • Research the brand and specific seat to see if it has been recalled
  • Make sure all the parts and components of the car seat are attached and functioning properly

If the car seat was in a crash don’t buy or borrow the seat. The integrity of the car seat can be compromised in a crash. You can usually find the expiration date of a car seat on the tag located on the side of the seat. Many seats expire after 6 years, so if you know when the seat was made you can guestimate when that expiration date is.

If you don’t know the history of the car seat, it’s probably best to not buy or borrow it. Sure, there might not be anything wrong with it, but that is still a huge risk you’d be taking, and you won’t really know until it fails to do its job.

Read more: When can my child start to use an adult seat belt?

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