The Good Housekeeping Institute’s technical and education professionals rated dozens of car seats in the past two years, including infant car seats. They’ve also worked with real-life parents to test car seats in a variety of car makes and sizes to make sure these car seats are right for everyone’s lifestyle.
First, they make sure every car seat meets federal safety standards. They then conduct tests in the lab and at home to verify safety, ease of installation, stability, ease of adjustments, ease of entry and exit for babies, removal of the carrier from the base and installation in compatible strollers, and more. to judge. . To achieve this, the Lab places each car seat in different vehicles and strollers and uses an 8-pound infant dummy to simulate putting a child in the car seat and evaluate how easy it is to secure them and to install. the car seats.
What should you look for when shopping for a baby car seat?
Many convertible car seats are safe for newborns, but Infant car seats are specifically designed for a baby’s needs, providing extra targeted support for the neck, head and spinal cord. Typically infant car seats are also smaller than other types of car seats, allowing easier access to your baby when getting in and out, and are compatible with certain strollers, allowing you to easily remove the car seat and attach it to a stroller without removing the baby.
Here are some aspects to consider when choosing a baby car seat:
Height and Weight Limits
Each infant car seat will specify height and weight limits. Once your child reaches the maximum of either, usually up to 32 inches or 35 pounds, it’s time to move up to a larger car seat.
Many infant car seats have the option to install into a base that attaches to your vehicle, allowing you to keep your baby undisturbed in the carrier while carrying them outside of your vehicle, and to easily clip the carrier back into the base during your ride. next ride. Make sure the carrier is light enough that you can comfortably lift it off the base with your baby in it.
Carriers are typically compatible with a range of strollers, extending the scope of some strollers that cannot be used at birth, making it much easier to get a newborn from point A to B.
Ease of installation
Our experts found that the most difficult aspect during the tests was attaching the car seat to the vehicle. Many seats require a lot of strength and some seats fit better in certain vehicles. Please pay attention to the size of the car seat and the size of the rear seat of your vehicle before purchasing. Rent a certified car seat professional if you need help with the installation.
All car seats are marked with an expiration date, usually between six and ten years from the date of manufacture. If you want to use your seat for several children, pay attention to the expiration date. Also, never use a car seat that has been in an accident before.
You will see two harness options when choosing your perfect car seat: rethread and no rethread. Choosing a harness that you can re-thread means that as your baby grows, every time you need to adjust the size, you’ll have to reach and reroute the straps through the back of the harness.