5 Ways to keep your car seat safe most moms don't know about

car seatHave you heard about coat compression? Probably not! Well, that's what can happen to your child if you strap him to the car seat with his winter coat on. Since winter is here, it's very important that you know about this and other safety guidelines about car seats. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration most parents use the wrong car seat and don't even know it. Stick around because we are going to tell you how to keep your child safe in the car.

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Read more ¿Qué más?: Your child's car seat could be deadly!

I confess that when my kids were little and didn't pay much attention to car seat safety because I thought that as long as they were in the seat, they were safe. I was wrong! Make sure to check the model of your car seat every six months to make sure it's up to date. All car seats models are given a grade and you should always choose the best.

1. Don't ask for hand-me-downs: Baby gear is pricey and gently used items are heaven sent, but not when it comes to the car seat. Safety guidelines are revised every six months because car features change every year. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration advises to wait just before the baby is born to buy the car seat.

2. Choose correctly: Before buying a new car seat or transitioning to a bigger seat you should measure your child. Take into consideration his age, weight and height to determine which car model is appropriate him. Make sure to read the manual to install the seat correctly.

3. Always in the back: Regardless of what you see in many movies and TV shows, car seats should always be on the back of your car. Your child should always be sitting securely on it until he outgrows the seat. The NHTSA recommends that children seat in the back until they are 12 years old.

4. Coat compression: It's cold outside and your child don't want to take his coat off, I'm sorry but he has to. When you strap your child with his heavy goose down coat on, you have to loosen the harness to make room for the coat. By doing so, you are leaving your child unprotected because if you get into an accident, your child will fly off the seat. Remember that the harness needs to fit securely on his chest.

5. Don't forget your child: Just like in the summer, leaving your child in the car when is freezing outside could be deadly. Children can develop hypothermia easily and suffer brain damage. Make sure to leave your purse or phone on the back seat next to your child so you'll remember that he is quietly sleeping back there.

Image via supafly /Flickr

Topics: advice  baby  child