Used Car Seats: Are They Really a Bargain?

New car seats cost $100 to $300 or even more. Money is tight for many of us and reusing an old car seat or buying a car seat secondhand may seem like a great idea.  A Graco Snugride car seat and stroller frame can be bought on Craig's List for $65, half the price you'd pay at Target.  Using your nephew's outgrown seat is free.  But, what are you really saving?
Used car seats may save you money at the cost of your child's life. There are several reasons why used car seats offer less protection than new seats.
  1. If the seat was ever involved in an accident, the impact may have compromised the seat's ability to keep your child safe.
  2. Older seats may not meet current safety standards.
  3. The seat may have been recalled due to a faulty design or other defects. Check the manufacturer's website to learn about recalls.
  4. The instructions may be missing.  In order for a car seat to effectively protect your child, it must be installed according to the manufacturer's specifications.  You may be able to download instructions from the manufacturer's website.
  5. The plastic in car seats becomes brittle over time.  A brittle car seat can shatter in an Atlanta car crash.
If possible, we suggest buying a car seat new and saving money with used baby clothing.  However, if you must use a secondhand seat, make sure the seat is less than ten years old (preferably less than five years old) and check to see if the car seat has been recalled before using it. Ask the owner if it has ever been involved in an accident and make sure you have the correct manual.  Use the manual to check that the car seat has all its parts.
Car crashes are the leading cause of child injury and death. Your car seat is the best protection for your child in the event of an Atlanta traffic accident. Make sure your car seat can do its job.
If your child is injured in an Atlanta car crash, he may be eligible for compensation for his medical expenses and pain and suffering.  To learn more, contact Shane Smith Law and ask to schedule a free consultation with an Atlanta auto accident attorney.
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