HOW TO CHOOSE AN APPROPRIATE CAR SEAT DECISION

HOW TO CHOOSE AN APPROPRIATE CAR SEAT DECISION
HOW TO CHOOSE AN APPROPRIATE CAR SEAT
DECISION GUIDE
What is
your child’s
age?
Under 2
years
NEW PA law:
Child must be rear-facing until age 2
Best Practice: Child can remain rearfacing after age 2, until they reach
the maximum height OR weight limits
of the seat
The harness:

Height must be at or below
shoulder level

Straps must fit snugly (meaning
you aren’t able to pinch the
webbing at shoulder level)

Chest clip must be at armpit
level
The car seat:

Must be tightly installed with
vehicle safety belt OR lower
anchors

Shouldn’t move more than one
inch at the belt path

Must recline so infant’s head
doesn’t fall forward (refer to
recline indicator on the car seat)

Doesn’t include products that
are bought separately and not
crash tested with the seat
(mirror, harness pads, hanging
toys, seat protector, etc.) unless
product is approved by car seat
manufacturer
2-4years
Best Practice:
Child should remain rear-facing
in a convertible car seat after
age 2 provided they meet the
rear-facing requirements for
height and weight limits of the
car seat
Once a child is forward-facing,
they should remain in a fivepoint harness car seat until
they reach the maximum
height OR weight of the seat
The harness:

Height must be at or
above shoulder level for
forward-facing

Straps must fit snugly
(meaning you aren’t able
to pinch webbing at
shoulder level)

Chest clip must be at
armpit level
The car seat:

Must be tightly installed
with vehicle safety belt
OR lower anchors and
tether (review your
LATCH system weight
restrictions before
installation)

Must be placed in an
upright position for
forward-facing install
>4 years
AND >40lbs
PA law:
Children ages 4-8 must be in booster
The following guidelines are allowed
under the law for children who:
 Weigh less than 40lbs: May
remain in five-point harness
car seat
 Weigh more than 80lbs, or are
taller than 4 feet, 9 inches:
May use vehicle safety belt
without booster
Best Practice: Child should remain in
five-point harness car seat until they
reach the maximum weight OR height
limits of the seat. After that, a highback
or backless booster seat should be used
until they can properly fit in a vehicle
safety belt.
Booster Seats:

Raise children up so that the
vehicle’s lap/ shoulder belt fits
them correctly.

Are needed until children fit
the vehicle safety belt, usually
around 4’9” in height OR age
10-12 years old

Should be buckled in when not
in use to prevent unnecessary
movement
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