All children should be placed in properly fitting child safety seats, booster seats, or seat belts every time they ride in a car or truck. Car seats and seat belts save lives! Fewer children are dying or being seriously injured in car accidents today than in years past. In large part, this is due to increases in the numbers of children who are buckled up properly while riding in a car. Unfortunately, many children still are not buckled up properly and some are not buckled up at all!
It is critically important that your child ride in a properly fitted seat. This guide will help you know which type of car seat is right for your child.
Built-in seats are available in some cars and vans. Refer to your owner's manual, or call the car's manufacturer, for information on weight and height limits.
Whatever seat you purchase, make sure you read all instructions properly, especially installation instructions; your child won't be safe if the seat isn't installed properly. Certified Child Protective Seat (CPS) Technicians are available if you need help; visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration web site for information on where to find a technician near you. Remember that if a seat is in a car that is involved in an accident that is more serious than a fender-bender, it should be replaced. Used car seats are therefore not recommended, because it can be difficult to know everything that's happened while they were in use.
The type of car seat your child needs depends on your child's age and size.
Is your child younger than 12 months?
Does your child weigh more than 20 pounds?