Car Seats. It’s a minefield. Especially if you are a parent for the first time there is a lot of conflicting advice out there
There is currently no standard rating system for car seat safety performance. However, by law any child seat sold in the UK must have passed the European Commission’s (EC) 44.03 or later 44.04 standards for child seats. We found this info (and more >>HERE<< )
If you don’t know what type or style you need you can check out the Full UK Guidelines >>HERE<<
The ‘E’ mark (a capital E in a circle) will confirm this, and provides the assurance that the car seat will help to protect an infant in the most common crash scenarios.
Child car seats may alternatively be tested to the new car seat regulation R129 (iSize).
It is worth noting at just because the Car Seat passed the EC’s Standards, not all car seats are equally as safe.
One thing that is clear though is that Second-hand car seats are NOT recommended. You never know whether they have been in a crash with the previous owner thus weakening the integrity should you have a collision.
Rear Facing car seats have been proven to be much safer than forward facing seats, check out this video showing the difference in a collision.It is eye opening. In some European Countries they recommend children to be rear facing up until the age of 4.
Some people worry about rear facing because they can’t easily see their child in the back, however with one of these handy mirrors that problem becomes a thing of the past!
>>>GET IT HERE<<<
Forward Facing Car seats are not all as equally as safe either, some Car Seats will leave your child more vulnerable to whiplash, broken legs or even broken necks in a collision.
Did you know that some car seats have an expiry date? Yep- they can go out of date! It is worth noting that not all in the UK do, but it is usually stamped into the plastic if it does. (My old Maxi Cosi did, for example.)
It is well worth checking with the manufacturer if you are using an old car seat. The plastic can weaken over time and be less affective at protecting your child in a crash.
Many manufacturers recommend that you replace or upgrade your child car seats after 5 years, because child car seats are constantly being improved and upgraded, and a new car seat will be able to provide better protection and comfort than an older car seat
It is not easy. It baffles me how if it passes the EC ruling then it is deemed safe. Thats all well and good, but what is the SAFEST? Is there one I could buy that will protect my child more? We do everything we can to keep our children safe- I find it CRAZY that there is no specific hard testing and some sort or rating to see which ones are better than others.
Personally, I ALWAYS check the website Which– they are the only website that I have discovered that carry out their own crash tests and give a rating on how safe each car seat is. Some of the ‘Best Buy’s’ and ‘Don’t Buys’ are eye opening.
Go to their website HERE
If you know of another place to get advanced safety ratings we would be very happy to hear from you!