When shopping for a car seat, safety and comfort are key. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recommends that children stay rear facing until at least age 1. It is best to keep your child rear-facing as long as possible to keep him or her safe. Your child should remain in a rear-facing car seat until he or she reaches the top height or weight limit allowed by the car seat’s manufacturer. Once your child outgrows the rear-facing car seat, they can transition to a forward-facing car seat with a tether and harness. Here are some tips for choosing the safest car seat for your little one:
A 5-POINT HARNESS
These straps – one for each shoulder, one for each hip, and one that goes between your baby’s legs – are crucial for safety.
How Guardimals compares: Guardimals has a 5-point harness for children 22 to 50 lbs., and 29 to 48 inches in height
SIDE IMPACT PROTECTION
Some car seats have special energy-absorbing foam and other features designed to better protect your baby’s head and chest in a side-impact accident.
How Guardimals compares: Guardimals has an easy to use multiple adjust wrap-around headrest with energy-absorbing foam for added side impact protection.
As your child grows, you will need to adjust the harness. Some car seats allow you to adjust the straps and harness height from the front while some models have single-handed belt adjustments with quick-release buckles.
How Guardimals compares: Guardimals has a one-hand harness adjuster and grows as your child grows. Use the harnessed, high-back booster for children 22 to 50 lbs., and 29 to 48 inches in height. You can easily transition to using the Toddler Booster (Belt-positioning high back booster) with the car’s seat belt once your child is 30 to 100 lbs., and 38 to 57 inches in height. Finally, when your child outgrows the character, the unique continuous character patented design easily transitions to a backless booster without feet and other character markings for kids 40-100 lbs. and 40”-57” in height.
LATCH (lower anchors and tethers for children)
The LATCH system allows car seats to be attached directly to a vehicle’s frame instead of using the seat belts to secure them. All car seats and vehicles have been compatible with the LATCH system since 2002. Be sure to note the LATCH weight limit in the manual or label affixed to the seat to know at which point you’ll need to install the seat with the seat belt.
How Guardimals compares: Guardimals uses the LATCH system. During the crash testing at the government approved test facilities, Guardimals passed compliance using both the front and rear belt path installation methods. After analyzing the crash test data, we recommend using the top tether with front belt installation method as this method produced the HIGHEST safety numbers and significantly reduced the load on the child.
A well-padded seat with plenty of head support gives your toddler a better ride.
How Guardimals compares: Guardimals has a comfortable contour and made of a soft plush material with mesh backing for cooling. The deep headrest provides added comfort and side impact protection.
Toddlers are messy, but your car seat doesn’t have to be. Look for a car seat with a removable cover that is machine washable.
How Guardimals compares: Guardimals has a removable machine washable cover.
Guardimals, by Sentry Baby Products, are the world’s most kid-friendly car seats. Inspired by children’s favorite animals, Guardimals deliver the charm and imagination that children love — and the safety and peace of mind that parents demand.