What car seat should I buy?

In today’s stores, dozens of car seat options line the aisles. Prices, features and styles can vary dramatically. Rest assured that all car seats meet the same federal safety standards.

Infant SeatThe best car seat is one that:

  • Fits your child;
  • Fits your vehicle;
  • Fits your budget;
  • And you will use correctly every trip!

Sounds easy, right?  It’s harder than it looks!  Despite parents’ best intentions, NHTSA estimates that 3 out of 4 car seats are installed incorrectly.

To find the right fit for your child, visit AAA’s Car Seat guide for up-to-date recommendations based on the age, height, weight and maturity level of your child.

3 in 1 Seat

 

To learn how to properly install your seat in your vehicle, enlist the help of a professional. Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians pass rigorous training and will help teach you to install your car seat correctly.  To find a free inspection near you visit seatcheck.org.

Car seats vary in price.  The price you pay for your car seat is not a reflection on how much you love your child.  Yet it is important to ensure the car seat has not expired and is not on the recall list. If cost is an issue, some jurisdictions offer subsidized car seats for individuals on public assistance.  Contact your state CPS coordinator or fire department to find out if this is offered in your area.

And finally, make sure you buckle your child in correctly!  Examples of common mistakes include not ensuring that the harness straps are (1) at the correct height for your child (2) tightened snugly (3) connected by a chest clip that is at armpit level.  

Additional Resources