NOW, INSTALL IT RIGHT
Car seats vary based on their fixing mechanism, Nisar points out. One is the isofix system – a mechanism that fixes the seat onto steel latches that are part of the car itself. All car models made after 20132014 come pre-installed with latches for isofix car seats. This system reduced the chance of errors.
The second type is the traditional system, where child seats are harnessed to the car’s seat belts. Buy a car seat that is compatible with the model of your car. Then install it properly.
‘A study done in the US showed that 80 per cent of accident injuries in children were because car seats weren’t installed properly,’ Nisar tells us.
He advises to never buy a secondhand car seat; you won’t know if it has been involved in an accident that has led to invisible structural damage.
Ensure car seats meet stringent safety standards, usually the United Nations E mark. Hint: It’s an orange sticker.
Read the directions and make sure you understand how to install the seat.
The back seat is the safest location in the car for a child to ride.
Lock the seat belt. If your vehicle doesn’t have lower anchors (isofix system), refer to your owner’s manual to lock a seat belt once the seat is in place.
Secure tightly. Once the seat is attached, wiggle it side to side, back and forth. It should not move more than 2.5cm (1 inch) in any direction.
Adjust the recline angle. For rearfacing seats, it is important that the base of your car seat is level to prevent your child’s head from flopping forward. Most seats have indicators on the side to help.
If you’re installing a forward-facing seat, make sure it’s flat against the seat’s bottom and back.
Find the mechanisms too technical? Babyshop offers free installation when you purchase a car seat. They will also re-install it for you later on in the event you’ve removed it for cleaning and find it difficult to fix it.
Babyshop offers a wide range of car seat options to its customers through its 51 stores across the UAE, and at babyshopstores.com.