Car Seat Safety

New Parent FAQs - Advice for New Parents

Like any new parent, you have lots of questions. You want the best for your little one, and child safety is paramount on your list of concerns. Chicco is here to help with our New Parent FAQ Guide—check out our most frequently asked questions below!

It’s best to have your infant car seat on-hand at least a month before your due date. That way you’ll have time to install the car seat in your primary vehicle as well as other vehicles that may end up transporting your new baby.
Find a car seat inspection station near you

To make transitioning between cars quick and easy, having one base for each regularly used vehicle is best. Will baby regularly be switching between your car, grandma’s car and the nanny’s car? Then having three bases will make your life much easier.

To keep your child rear-facing as long as possible, transition to a convertible car seat when your child outgrows either the height or weight guidelines for your infant car seat.

Keep your child rear-facing in their car seat until they have reached either the rear-facing height limit or the rear-facing weight limit of the car seat. Are your kid’s feet touching the seat back? Do they look a little cramped? That’s okay. Kids are a lot more flexible than adults. The benefit of keeping your child rear-facing for as long as possible is protection of their developing head, neck and spine. Kids do not need to be turned forward-facing until they reach the maximum rear-facing height or weight limit of the car seat. Kids are fragile, and they are best protected rear-facing, even if that means they have a little less leg room. See the recommendation from Visit our blog for more tips on determining when you can turn around a car seat to face forward.

Even when your child fits the height and weight guidelines to use a seat belt instead of a full harness with their booster seat, that doesn’t mean they should. Maturity matters - most children younger than 5-years old are not mature enough to sit without a full harness. You know your child best, so don’t make the switch until you’re confident your growing child will sit still and safely without a full harness. Check out our car seat progression guide for more information.

Some retailers might allow you test the fit of a car seat before purchasing but most have displays that allow you to check out the car seat in-store to research the features that make installation simple like bubble level indicators and multiple recline angles.

In most instances, the middle rear seat is the safest place for your car seat. However, there are multiple factors to consider; the most important being a seat location that allows you to install your car seat correctly and works best for your family. See the recommendation from

Yes, there is an expiration date listed on all car seats and bases. Before using a car seat or base with your child, always check for its expiration date. Visit our blog for more information on why car seats expire.

Yes, you must replace your car seat and base if it has been involved in a vehicle crash, even if you can’t see visible damage. A damaged car seat or base may not protect your child in a future accident.

All Chicco infant and convertible car seats are certified for usage on aircraft (FAA approved). Typically, you can also check car seats as baggage and most airlines will allow you to check in a car seat free-standing. You should not be required to put the car seat in a bag. Check with your airline for any specific requirements. Never use a booster seat on an airplane.

There are 5 types of car seats: infant, convertible, all-in-one, harness booster and belt-positioning booster. Choosing the right type of car seat for your child depends on a few factors including their age and weight. It is important to do research prior to making a purchase to ensure the car seat will fit your child and vehicle.

Most importantly, the car seat should be appropriate for your child’s height, weight and age. Another factor to consider is if the car seat will fit correctly in your vehicle. It’s also important that you choose a car seat that you know how to properly install and find easy to use every day.

To ensure the car seat installation is secure, do the “inch test” by giving the car seat/base a tug at the belt path (this is where the lower anchors or the seatbelt path are located)) forward and from side-to-side. If it moves more than one inch in any direction, uninstall and start over. You may need to adjust the car seat angle or choose a seat belt installation instead of LATCH depending on your vehicle type.

Most car seat covers can be spot cleaned or machine washed. The harness and plastic parts can be wiped with a damp cloth and mild detergent. Always refer to your car seat owner’s manual or manufacturer’s website for complete cleaning instructions. Chicco offers replacement parts for car seats including seat covers, infant inserts and cup holders, if needed.

Common car seat mistakes include not having a car seat that fits your child correctly, not harnessing the child properly and not having the car seat installed correctly. All of these factors help to keep a child protected in the event of a vehicle crash. It is important to read the car seat and vehicle owner’s manual for installation and use instructions.

Once you receive your new car seat it is important to read the owner’s manual and check the brand site for instructional videos to understand how to install it and properly secure your child. You should also register the car seat in case of a safety recall either online or by sending in the included postcard. Learn more about what to do after purchasing your car seat.