Summer is finally here! We know you can’t wait to celebrate with a long road trip to Grandma’s. However, before you load the kids into the car, you’ll want to make sure your vehicle, specifically the child safety seat, is prepared for travel. You can use the following tips as a checklist.
- Do you own the correct child safety seat? Thankfully, many car seats are designed to grow with your kids. Check the owner’s manual to make sure you are using the proper seat or configuration for your child’s age, height, and weight. Do not rent a seat that does not include these important facts or information about its history.
- Is the safety seat installed correctly? When it comes to installing a child’s car seat, it is best to follow the directions rather than guessing about how to install it. Two quick tests to make sure the seat is secure are the inch test and the pinch test.
- Inch test – Grab the base of the car seat and pull in all directions. If the seat is able to move more than an inch in any direction, it should be more tightly secured.
- Pinch test – When your child is snugly fastened into the seat, try to pinch the fabric by his or her shoulder. If you can pinch a wrinkle, then the strap should be tightened.
- Do you have extra material between your child and the seat? Adding towels, etc. can seem like a helpful tactic to keep your child comfortable in the seat, but these objects can actually decrease the seat’s ability to protect your child in the event of an accident. If the seat is too hot, take some time to cool the car down before buckling up your child.