Buying a Used Car Seat – Is It Worth It?

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When it comes to getting ready for baby, many expensive costs can be avoided by buying used. However, there are a few items that you want to be careful purchasing when buying used for baby. One is the car seat.

The History Behind the Car Seat

It is illegal to sell a car seat that has been in a collision. However, many people do this without realizing it. Even though the sellers on Craigslist or at a yard sale may be telling the truth, it is still a small risk to purchase a used car seat. It is best to get a used car seat from a trusted source, such as a family member or friend.

Also, there have been many recalls on car seats in the past three years. It is wise to do your research on any car seat you plan on purchasing. The best thing to do is to take your child seat that is older than a year old (even if it has only been used by you) to your local fire department. They will test and check the car seat and let you know if it is safe.

Expiration Dates

Many car seat companies will tell you that their car seat has a six-year expiration. Many think this is a crazy idea or a manipulative way that companies use to get consumers to buy a new and more expensive car seat.

Over time, items can become weaker, especially with constant use or if stored for too long. The plastics and the belt straps used for car seats can be compromised from prolonged use, weather conditions while in storage, among many other factors.

Insurance Factors

No one wants to plan to be in a car accident, especially with your precious baby in the back seat. However, if you were in a car accident and the insurance company was to investigate the damage, chances are they would not be very happy to see an older car seat or a car seat that has been in a car accident before. In fact, many insurance companies will not cover the cost of a new seat if they discover the seat is older.

How to Save Money on Car Seats

It is not the wisest decision to buy a used car seat. However, that does not mean you have to pay full price for a car seat either. Instead, look for deals through Target, Babies R Us, and Amazon. Babies R Us even has a bi-annual trade-in event. They allow you to trade in used equipment for 25% off one item. Many times family members and friends will ask if you need anything for baby while you are pregnant. It is the perfect time to mention that you are trying to save up money for a car seat.

When it comes to babies, there are so many creative and safe ways to save money. Buy second hand clothing and toys for children. Breastfeed instead of using formula and make your baby’s feed from scratch. However, when it comes to the safety of your child, no amount of money saved it worth it.