Keeping your child safe is the most important part of being a parent. Ensuring that they are always free from danger, that your house is toddler proof and that all the equipment you have is suitable for them can be a long and arduous process, but it is worth it to ensure the health of your child. Car safety is one element that you can't afford to get wrong. Car seats are what stop your child from being thrown forward in the event of an accident, and it has been proven that using car seats correctly can reduce the severity of injuries and even save lives during a car crash. As such, choosing one that is right for your child is not to be taken lightly. So, when do babies change car seats? This is a crucial fact to know. To make sure you have all the information and know when it's best to change car seats for your child's safety, read on.
When do babies change car seats?
It's likely that you will have to change their car seat at least once as your child grows up. As children grow and change so rapidly, making sure a car seat is the right size to keep them safe can be hard, but it's an important job to ensure they are protected as much as possible. For this reason, there are three groups which have been curated to explain the different levels of car seats. These should help you to instantly recognise which seat is applicable for your child based on their stage of development. They focus on a child's age and weight to determine the right class for them, so you should easily be able to find the right seat for them.
What are the different sizes of car seats?
Group 0+ is the first group and focuses on newborns up to babies aged 15 months (or any baby up to the weight of 13kg). Any car seat labelled this should be installed rear-facing and for newborns, it's worth noting that you should be keeping car journeys short - to no more than about 30 minutes regardless of the car seat. The seats in this category are sometimes also called travel systems and may be able to be clipped to a pushchair frame. Group 1 comprises both rear and forward-facing seats. These can be used by children from as early as 9 months and are safe to use all the way up to four years of age. Note: they are best for children who weigh between 9 and 18kg. Group 2/3 is the final group of car seats which should see your child through to the end of their need for one. They include both rear and forward-facing booster seats and are aimed at children between 4 and 11 years old or who have a weight between 15 and 36kg.
How long is a child seat needed?
Because of the extent of the consequences when child seats aren't used, it is law in the UK that your child must use one until they turn 12 years of age or are at least 135cm tall - whichever comes first.
Can I use a combination seat?
Since there are so many groups, it may not be possible for you to buy a separate carrier for each stage of your child's growth. For your ease and to avoid having to buy lots of different contraptions, there are combination seats which cross over the groups listed above. While these are more economical, it's possible that they might not provide the same level of safety for your child.
Can I pass car seats down to my other children?
Car seats that have remained in your family should be fine to reuse as long as all the components are working correctly and there is no damage to the seat. However, if the seat has been used by someone you don't know, it's impossible to know if they're being truthful about its use - if it's been involved in a car crash, this would make the seat very unsafe. As such, you should never buy a second-hand car seat offline or from someone you don't know.
Where to find trustworthy car seats
Now you can stop wondering 'when do babies change car seats?' and move on to the question of finding a reliable and reputable manufacturer from whom you can buy a car seat you can trust. At For Your Little One, we understand the importance and worry that goes into choices like these every day and since raising a child is so hectic as it is, we have done our best to help by compiling car seats from some of the most reputable brands to give you peace of mind. Over at Foryourlittleone.com, we have a whole section dedicated to car seats (https://foryourlittleone.com/pages/car-seats) where you can browse depending on the age of your child and find the option that best suits you. We also offer free shipping over £50 and a six-month warranty, so you don't have to panic if something goes wrong. Here at For Your Little One, we have your back all the way through the parenting process and you can rely on us to find the best products which will keep your baby as happy and healthy as possible. This way, you can simply focus on the wonders of watching your child grow up without missing any of those important milestones. So, don't waste a moment, head over to our car seat section now and find the perfect fit for you!