Common Car Seat Mistakes You Must Avoid

Charlotte Miller

Updated on:

While it may seem that putting your child in a car seat is easy, there are many safety checks that parents should always perform before hitting the road. According to car insurance Lake Charles-based professionals, 80% of car seats are not properly mounted or used.

Researchers discovered that when it comes to buckling children in, guardians make an average of three errors, and even one mistake can be fatal. Fortunately, avoiding the most popular car seat blunders is relatively easy. It just takes a little study and attention to detail. However, it is important to note that car seats aren’t fool-proof, and even properly designed seats can cause severe injuries in an accident. 

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Read more to discover some of the most popular car seat blunders committed by parents and guardians:

  1. Forgetting to tighten the seat belt

In the case of a crash, children sitting in car seats that have not been properly installed are more likely to touch the backs of the seats. Through securing and locking the safety restraint that keeps the car seat in place, you will protect your child from a severe head injury. This is a crucial move that many parents overlook. Grab the base of your child’s car seat with both hands and pull. If it is a bit loose, then you can shift it to an inch farther.

  1. Don’t forget to tighten the harness straps

The harness that secures your child in the seat should be tight and without slack. If you can squeeze the straps between your fingertips, it’s too loose and won’t protect you in an accident. Car insurance Lake Charles determines it as a legitimate consideration to increase safety.  

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  1. Failing to use the booster seat

When a child outgrows his or her car seat, they must use a booster seat before they are tall enough to wear a normal seat belt properly. Booster seats should not be used for children who weigh less than 80 pounds or are shorter than 4 foot 9 inches.

  1. Adding aftermarket padding

Padding supports the body and is strategically placed in car seats to provide maximum security. You might be tempted to add extra neck or head support, but non-crash-tested aftermarket items will reduce the seat’s ability to avoid injuries.

  1. Do the pinch test

Once the belt is buckled, consider pinching additional elastic at the top of your child’s shoulders to see if it fits snugly. The harness is too loose if you can pinch extra webbing. Be sure to tighten and double-check everything.

  1. Utilise the top tether

You will improve the safety of your child’s safety seat even further by using the top tether strap on the seat. Check your car seat and vehicle manuals for instructions on how to use the tether. If a tether is needed, secure the top tether strap of the seat to the proper anchor point in the vehicle and tighten it. To find the right anchor point, consult your car’s seat manual.

  1. Check the tightness of the installations

Pay extra attention to any extra support installations. Seat measurements, shoulder supports, and other straps are extremely important for the safety and security of your child during their transport. Car insurance Lake Charles-based organizations pay extra emphasis on the quality of the car to avoid accidents.

  1. Positioning the shoulder straps

The shoulder straps for rear-facing seats must be threaded into slots that are at or below your baby’s shoulders, while the chest clip should still be at armpit level. Shoulder belts for forward-facing seats should be at or above your child’s shoulders.

Don’t worry if you find yourself making any of these common mistakes. While installing a child safety seat can be difficult, there are numerous resources available to assist you. Make efforts to correct these mistakes on your own, using your child-safety seat and car manuals as guides. If you are still unsure, visit a nearby car seat check station to speak with a professional child passenger safety technician. 

Most importantly, do not forget to get your car insured by a reputed car insurance Lake Charles-based organization.