Car Seat Buying Guide For Parents
Want to buy car seat for your child and still confused which car seat suits you the best? Mostly parents stuck on this point while buying the best car seat for kids, the reason is that there are different types of car seats available in the market. They are confused that which car seat best suits the needs of their little passengers.
We have designed a car seat buying guide for you, so that you can make the accurate buying decision that satisfies you after purchase. You need a car seat right after birth of your baby for taking sweet little angel to home from hospital till the time they can use the adult seat belt. There are a few major factors that should be considered while buying a new baby car seat including the car seat safety reviews, child’s age, weight and size, then comes the amount that you are looking to spend, the size of your vehicle and many more.
Why do you need the best car seat for your baby?
You need a car seat for your little one to ensure the safety of your baby. Being a parent, it is your responsibility to provide the best possible safety to your children. Furthermore, it is the requirement of state regulations that you can’t keep your baby in lap in the car while driving. So keeping the laws and regulations in mind, it is important to get the best convertible car seats to avoid any fines from the concerned government authority.
The laws of states and countries vary from country to country, so it is always good to check the laws and regulations of the state and country you are residing in to avoid any inconvenience. Always look for the instructions from government before buying the car seat, as they have already mentioned that which particular type of car seat should be used for all ages of kids.
Basic Guidelines from American Academy of Pediatrics
Over the years, the car seat rules and regulations have been changed to ensure the safety of little passenger travelling in the car. The continuous research work of AAP and its allies made it possible to ensure the safety of kids. I have added a few points that you need to consider while using a car seat in your car.
- Kids should ride in the backseat till the age of 13 years old.
- Newborn babies should be kept in rear-facing position till the age of 2 years old and if possible keep the car seat in rear-facing position as long as you can.
- Never use a refurbished car seat as you never know that it is accident free or not. If you are sure it had never faced a crash, then check the expiration dates and you can use them.
- Immediately change the car seat if you faced any car accident.
- Children should be kept in the booster seat from 8 years till 12 years.
So till now you know exactly the laws and regulations of your State and gave determined the age, size, height of your baby, the vehicle size etc. Now you have a clear mind what you exactly need and what you are going to buy for your kids.
Now there are different options for you to select from. There are different types of car seats; a few are all in one convertible car seats that grows as your child grows. You don’t need to buy or upgrade the car seat as your child grows. Other options make you upgrade the car seat as your baby grows.
Here are a few basic types of baby car seats and we have also selected the best baby car seat models and reviewed for you at Best Baby Essentials
Infant Rear Facing Car Seats
The infant car seats are designed to keep in rear facing position only. As per the Recommendation of AAP, the kids should be kept in rear facing position till 2 years of age. The infant rear facing car seats are ideal for newborns. The weight ranges starts from as low as 4 pounds to 40 pounds in rear facing position.
There are a few models in the market that restricts the weight limit to 20 pounds in rear facing position while others come with the option of keeping a child in rear facing having weight up to 40 lbs.
It has been noticed that mostly children gain height first and they reach the point of maximum height before reaching to the weight limits. In this case, you need to check that if the distance between the child’s head and the top of the seat head is one inch, then it is time to change the car seat and get an upgraded model.
The infant car seat only known as capsule car seat is best for babies as you can easily detach it from the base and can move it along with you anywhere. Another feature of an infant car seat is that you can install in most of the strollers as well.
Finally, as the infant rear facing car seat is used in rear position, so your child will outgrow it soon as we all know that infants grow overnight.
The price range of Infant rear facing car seat of a capsule infant car seat varies from brand to brand and model to model. You can get it from $100 to $500 and more depending on your budget and requirements.
Check out our top rated lightweight Infant Car Seats (Rating):
2) Convertible Car Seats
The convertible car seats as indicated by the name, they can be used as rear-facing infant car seat and as forward-facing toddler car seat. You have two options at this place, either you can buy a rear-facing infant car seat, and then later on upgrade to the convertible car seat or you can directly buy the best convertible car seat.
It all depends on your preferences and requirements; if you want to place your kid maximum in rear-facing position, then you can consider the convertible car seats, as they give you the maximum weight limits up to 50 lbs in rear-facing position.
Another opinion about the convertible car seat is that it is not as good as for newborns as the rear-facing infant car seat or a capsule car seat. The reason is that it accommodates as little is a newborn baby up to toddlers. So experts have an opinion that it is big for the newborns.
The convertible car seats are economical as it grows with you baby so they can save you money, however you can’t carry it along with you out of the car. The price range is from $100 to $400 and above.
Check out our top rated Convertible Car Seats (Rating):
3) 5 point Harness Booster Car Seats
The booster seats are used for the child when they out grow the convertible car seats. The booster seat is used for the heighten children, so that they can use seat belt. The booster seat is designed for 8 years old children and above.
There are two different types of five point harness booster car seat i.e. Backless booster car seat and the high back booster car seat. There are a few brands that make the booster car seats with both options.
The backless boosters are relatively familiar in parents as they are affordable, light in weight and mobility is easy. On the other hand, the high back booster car seats are safe as they have the sideways protection system installed in them.
You need to select the best suitable booster car seat as per your needs. The price range is from $50 to $300 and above.
Check out our Best Harness Booster Car Seats (Rating):
4) Rear Facing Toddler Convertible Car Seats
As the name indicates that the specialty of this type of car seat is that you can keep your toddler in rear- facing position in this booster seat.
It is designed especially for toddlers to keep them in rear-facing position and in forward-facing position when required. You can use it from 20 lbs up to 50 lbs in the rear facing position for toddlers.
These are designed by keeping the weight and height requirements of toddlers, so you should be assured that they are comfortable and safe for babies.
The price range for rear-facing toddler car seats is from $100 to $200 and above depending on brand and quality.
Check out our top-rated Best Toddler Rear Facing Convertible Car Seat (Rating):
5) All-in-One Narrowest Car Seats
These are more like the convertible car seats and they can be used as booster car seats. All in one car seats are really a money saving option for parents. They can be used for a newborn and for a child requires the booster car seat.
It grows with your baby and it is designed in such a way that it satisfies the requirement of all ages of kids. All in one car seats take a lot of space in your car normally and they are designed with heavy accessories, so I have prepared a list of narrowest all in one car seats, so that you can enjoy all the features even if you have a small car.
In rear-facing position, these can be used for babies weighs from 4 pounds to 50 pounds and in forward facing position, you can use it for babies weighs from 20 pounds to 90 pounds.
The booster mode can be used for the kids weighs from 90 pounds to 120 pounds. The price range of all in one car seats starts from $100 to $300 and above.
Check out our top rated All-in-One Narrowest Car Seats: (Rating):
In essence, if you want to get the best convertible car seat, then you have to check your requirements before buying the car seats. Always keep in mind that your baby is most important and to secure them it is your responsibility to bought them the best product available in the market. Buying best product doesn’t mean that you have to buy the most expensive car seat for them, but always read the reviews and check the ratings of car seats before buying them. You can always find best deals and budget car seats for your little passengers.