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Improperly Installed Child Car Seats May Cause Personal Injury

Child seats for vehicular use are designed in very specific ways to maximize your child's safety. For this reason, it's incredibly important to make sure you are following all manufacturer rules as exactly as possible when installing your child's car seat.

Generally, the most important thing to do is install with proper tension on both car seat belts or latch and on the harness straps. Car seats shouldn't be able to move side to side much, but they shouldn't be so tight that there is no movement at all. The booklet that came with the seat will tell you the appropriate amount of allowable movement.

The car seat's harness must also be tight enough to prevent your child from flying out in the event of a crash. No accessories should be used, including pads, cushions, strap covers, or car seat covers, unless they came in the package with the car seat from the manufacturer. Your child should never be buckled in with a heavy coat, as it could compress and create a gap. Finally, make sure you're unable to pinch any strap material and that the chest clip sits level with your child's armpits.

Moving a child up to a bigger seat is something that should be postponed for as long as possible. Keeping a child rear facing lowers chances of internal decapitation and other extreme injuries significantly, and their legs are not in danger of being crushed. Similarly, a five point harness protects much better than a car belt in the event of a crash.

Overall, making sure you're following the manufacturer's recommendations exactly is the best way to keep your child sage. Keep them in the appropriate seat as long as possible, and never add anything to the seat, including coats. This keeps your little one riding safely!