I’ve heard in many mom groups, things like “I don’t buy XYZ brand car seats because they have so many recalls and I just don’t trust them!”
The Importance of Car Seat Recalls
Recalls can be for things as minor as mis-labeling. Or as serious as a seat that will not function properly at all in a crash. Nearly every brand has had at least one call at one time or another. They aren’t indicative of an unsafe seat. Recalls mean the company is listening to consumers, constantly testing their seats and making sure to issue recalls if they find any issues.
There are a couple different kinds of recalls. The first is voluntary. Voluntary means that the company is not being required by NHTSA (national highway traffic safety administration). These recalls are things the company has found on their own and notifies the public of before being forced to issue a recall. Mandatory recalls are the other type of recall– these types are rare since the manufacturer usually issues their own recall before being forced to do this.
How can you find out if your seat is effected by a recall?
- First and foremost, register your seat! Every new car seat on the market comes with a registration card. Fill that out and send it in. If there’s a recall, you’ll be notified. Most manufacturers also allow you to register online now.
- Check the NHTSA recall website
- Check the safety belt safe recall list. This list is easy to read and is updated daily.
- Download the Safer Car app on iTunes or Google Play
Kristen Sanders is a Child Passenger Safety Technician Instructor and owner of Buckle up, Bumblebee; a mobile service that offers private car seat checks and educational classes for families of all backgrounds. You can contact her at www.buckleupbumblebee.com or Kristen@buckleupbumblebee.com