Save your child’s life ― here is how to use your child’s car seat correctly.

Your by-age guide to car seat safety

Using an infant or child seat properly is essential to keeping your child safe in your vehicle.

But with so many car seats offering different functions on the market, it can be quite overwhelming for parents who want to protect junior’s safety.

Watch our short video to ensure that your child is using the appropriate child seat for his age and life stage.

Video & Infographic: Syahirah Maszaid

 

Car seat information for your child: What you need to know

 

1. Rear-facing car seats

· Your baby should be sitting in a rear-facing seat till he is at least 2 years old, or as long as possible. But make sure he is still under the upper weight or height limit of the car seat.

· There are three types of rear-facing seats: An infant car seat (rear-facing only); a convertible seat (which can be converted to forward-facing for older children), and a 3-in-1 seat (rear-facing seat that can be converted to forward facing and used as a booster seat later on).

· Use the harness slots at or below your baby’s shoulders.

· Ensure that the harness is snug, and that its chest clip is placed at the centre of the chest.

· Adjust the angle of the car seat to make sure that your baby’s head is not flopping forward.

· Never place the rear-facing car seat at the front seat of a vehicle with an active airbag.

 

Never place the rear-facing car seat at the front seat of a vehicle that has an active airbag.

2. Forward-facing car seats

· Once your toddler outgrows the rear-facing seat, he should be buckled into a forward-facing seat. A five-point harness should be able to keep your wriggly tot in his seat.

· When you convert your rear-facing seat to a forward-facing one, move the shoulder straps to the slots that are at or above your child’s shoulders.

· Adjust the angle of the car seat ― now that it is forward-facing, you may need it to be more upright.

· Always be sure to check the car seat instructions to ensure that it is well secured and the seat belt is locked and tightened.

· Move your child to a booster seat when he reaches the upper weight or height limit of this seat.

3. Booster seats

· A booster seat is appropriate for the older child, but for safety’s sake, ensure that the vehicle safety belts are positioned properly on him. According to the Singapore Police Force, anyone under 1.35m will need to use a booster seat.

· Booster seats either have a high back, or are backless. High-back boosters should be used in vehicles that don’t have headrests, or have low seat backs. Backless ones can be used in vehicles that have high seat backs.

· Boosters don’t have harness straps as they use your vehicle’s safety belts.

· The booster seat raises your child to the appropriate height, so that the lap and shoulder seat belts fit properly over the strongest parts of your child’s body. The lap belt should lie low and snugly over your child’s upper thighs. The shoulder belt must go past your child’s neck and shoulder, and diagonally across his chest.

· As long as your child is under 1.35m tall, he needs to use a booster seat.

Photos: iStock

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