January 22, 2010, Newsletter Issue #156: Types of Baby Car Seats

Tip of the Week

There are quite a few different types of baby car seats to choose from these days. Of course, when baby is just an infant you'll most likely have the carrier car seat that attaches to a stroller and to a base that is installed onto the car seat. This carrier carseat, however, is only good for the first few months, though. Once the baby starts to get bigger you'll have to get a permanent car seat, since she won't fit into the infant carrier comfortably anymore.
When looking to replace the infant car seat there are a few choices to consider. You could get a rear facing car seat that will work with babies up to 20 lbs, these may cost less since they are used for a shorter period of time, but will need to be replaced as the baby gets bigger.
Convetible car seats are probably your best bet. These also come in different varieties, though, so you have to look for one that best suits your needs. If your baby is under 20 lbs and under a year, look for a convertible car seat that can be installed rear facing and that will also work forward facing once the baby is big enough and over a year.
Some car seats work only forward facing for babies at least 20 pounds, so if you choose this one you'll have to wait until the baby is a year old to use it. Be sure that you can use the infant rear facing car seat until then.
Another feature to consider is the weight capacity. Try to find a car seat that will accommodate your baby until about 80 or 100 pounds. These may cost a little more, but you will use this chair until your child can ride without a car seat at all. If your seat only holds up to 50 or 60 lbs. then you will have to get a booster seat until your child reaches about 80-100 lbs.
All baby car seats have to pass certain safety guidelines, so they are all safe. The best way to pick the right one is to go to the store and test all the ones you like to make sure they will work for you and your baby.

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