Parenting can be very fun and very fulfilling, but it can also be stressful and a little bit confusing. One of the bigger pieces of confusion usually comes in the form of your kid’s car seat, with many parents not knowing basic info on car seat safety. Here are a few tips on car seat safety to take away some of that confusion and hopefully give little Alice or Bobby one less piece of ammunition in their future therapy sessions.
Start with the right seat
This is a big one that many parents may not have realized, but not only is your kid a giant time and money suck, she/he will also need at least three different car seats during their first few years of life.
- The first seat is the one you’ll need to install before you even go to the hospital: the rear-facing seat. For extra protection, babies must always face the rear of the car, preferably in the middle of the backseat. Also, make sure the seat is at the appropriate angle by taking a look at the seat’s angle gauge on the side to confirm that it’s between a 30- to 45-degree angle.
- The next one is the front-facing or “convertible seat.” This guy still straps your kid in just as tightly, but now they can look at you with the same condescension and sarcasm that they’ll only perfect as they get older.
- The last seat is the booster seat. Little Alice or Bobby with go into this seat when they hit 4 years or 40 pounds.
Don’t let them move an inch
A good rule of thumb for car seat safety is to make sure the seat does not move more than an inch when you tug or pull on it. This is the secret soup to a properly installed seat and we recommend really going to town to make sure the belts and straps are doing their job. Just don’t wake up your neighbors.
LATCH those babies in
To get the preferred tightness for the car seat, decide whether you’re going to use your car’s LATCH system or your seatbelts. If you own a new Nissan from your local Nissan dealer in Surprise, you’ll have access to the automaker’s state-of-the-art LATCH system. If you’re driving an older model car, your seatbelts will do just fine. All you need to do is simply thread the belt through the bottom of the seat’s base, then buckle it. Pull the belt as tight as it will go and make sure that none of your straps or belts are twisted.
Put a kid on it
Now it’s time to put your kid in the seat. First, ensure that the child has their bottom and back completely flat against the seat. Second, make sure the seat’s harness is between the kid’s shoulders and armpits, then tighten so that only one finger can fit between them and the straps. Finally, if the straps are still a little loose around the bottom of the seat, you can use a rolled up diaper or wash cloth to make sure Alice or Bobby is fully secured.
A properly installed car seat is one of the most important aspects of overall car safety. For more information about our full line of family-friendly vehicles, visit your local Surprise Nissan dealer today. Also, take a look at Nissan’s Snug Kids program to find out more about Nissan’s LATCH system and to discover even more tips and tricks to keep everyone safe and secure this summer.