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I made a car seat cover! - Page 2

post #21 of 30
When you say that your carseat is past the warranty period, what exactly do you mean? Is it expired? If so, it's absolutely not safe to use and should be destroyed.

-Angela
post #22 of 30
Actual warranties usually only last on carseats the first year or so, but after that the manufacturer is still responsible (as long as it's not expired) for anything that would happen to a child in that seat. If for some reason your carseat would fail during a crash and your child was injured b/c of it, by using an aftermarket product you are basically releasing the company from any responsibility they should take in that case (i.e. you can't sue them etc). That's what most people are referring to when they mention warranty, but if you did have a brand new seat, your warranty would most likely be void too. http://www.cpsafety.com/articles/AftMarketMan.aspx Those are statements from actual manufacturers. You'd have to call them to get actual confirmation on voiding liability etc.
post #23 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by alegna View Post
When you say that your carseat is past the warranty period, what exactly do you mean? Is it expired? If so, it's absolutely not safe to use and should be destroyed.

-Angela
I have three children and when I bought our first toddler car seat, I bought a good quality car seat, intending on using it for subsequent children as well. The car seat is older than it's six-year warranty period and I know that you are supposed to destroy them after this period. However, after looking at all the car seats in the stores and online I don't see any that are superior to the one I have, it has the same five point straps, hasn't been in any accidents and nothing is wrong with this car seat. I feel it would be a waste to just throw it out because a company wants to sell me a shiny new one so they can make a buck. I have heard the info. on how they are not safe, but after six years?! So one day it is safe and the next day it's not? I don't buy it. and I think it is a waste to go buy a new car seat with every kid. Yes, I want my child to be safe, but I really don't think that one day, when the warranty expires it is all of a sudden an unsafe car seat.
post #24 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by rbriansgirl View Post
I have three children and when I bought our first toddler car seat, I bought a good quality car seat, intending on using it for subsequent children as well. The car seat is older than it's six-year warranty period and I know that you are supposed to destroy them after this period. However, after looking at all the car seats in the stores and online I don't see any that are superior to the one I have, it has the same five point straps, hasn't been in any accidents and nothing is wrong with this car seat. I feel it would be a waste to just throw it out because a company wants to sell me a shiny new one so they can make a buck. I have heard the info. on how they are not safe, but after six years?! So one day it is safe and the next day it's not? I don't buy it. and I think it is a waste to go buy a new car seat with every kid. Yes, I want my child to be safe, but I really don't think that one day, when the warranty expires it is all of a sudden an unsafe car seat.
The point is that the seat's frame, webbing of the straps, and plastic can weaken over time. If you live in a place of extreme temperatures, or with great temperature fluctuations, it can weaken the seat faster.

The carseat covers are beautiful. They are a whole lot of work, I know because I made one and it took forever! In the second picture though, are the straps twisted? It looks like they might be, just concerned
post #25 of 30
Nice covers ...and I hate to be a wet blanket but wanted to throw this out here so that an educated decision can be made:

Regarding a homemade seat cover; one concern is that the seat cover doesn't meet federal standards for flammability. Beyond that, there may be some leeway for thin material. I will quote what the curriculum states in the instructor's manual about padding or inserts:
"It is best only to use the padding and inserts that come with the CRS or
that the manufacturer sells for use with specific CRSs. Other acceptable
padding includes:

a. Thin material that does not interfere with proper harness contact
and fit.
b. No thick material behind the child or under the harness system.
c. No thick material under the child's bottom."

Further notes: A thin seat cover or pad may not hinder the operation of a
CRS but a thick pad, blanket or clothing may interfere with or reduce crash
protection. This concern was generated by inserts of one inch or more of foam that began to appear in stores. The inserts that have a thin back (just tohold the side padding in place) are acceptable. However, extreme care must
be taken to be sure that the insert has slots that do not interfere with the
proper positioning of the harness.

HTH.

Dallaschildren
CPS Instructor and momma to 2 sons in seats
post #26 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by rbriansgirl View Post
I have three children and when I bought our first toddler car seat, I bought a good quality car seat, intending on using it for subsequent children as well. The car seat is older than it's six-year warranty period and I know that you are supposed to destroy them after this period. However, after looking at all the car seats in the stores and online I don't see any that are superior to the one I have, it has the same five point straps, hasn't been in any accidents and nothing is wrong with this car seat. I feel it would be a waste to just throw it out because a company wants to sell me a shiny new one so they can make a buck. I have heard the info. on how they are not safe, but after six years?! So one day it is safe and the next day it's not? I don't buy it. and I think it is a waste to go buy a new car seat with every kid. Yes, I want my child to be safe, but I really don't think that one day, when the warranty expires it is all of a sudden an unsafe car seat.
There are two main reasons for considering seats "expired" after a certain number of years. 1. Crash standards and other improvements required by the government change. It is doubtful that a seat made 10 years ago, for instance, would pass today's crash standards. Another example: LATCH attachments were introduced in September 2002 and older seats would not be so equipped. 2. Some have said that changes in temperature (reference to climate and weather) over time will weaken the plastic shell of the seat. I do not know if this is true or not. But, picture an average summer day in the South....how many times is your car parked out in the elements with the HOT rays of the sun beating down on the seat?
Keep in mind that as with many things, this is debateable even among "experts" as to just what the life of a safety seat is. There is NO question however, that seats over 10 years old should be retired. The debate therein lies in the range of 5 to 10 years. The JPMA recommends a 6 year life. 6 years is also the time that Britax products use for an expiration date. So 6 - 7 years is what I recommend to all parents. It seems to be right in the debateable middle.

Just curious....you have 3 kids but only 1 car seat? Please explain.

Dallaschildren
CPS Instructor and momma to 2 sons in seats
post #27 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dallaschildren View Post

Just curious....you have 3 kids but only 1 car seat? Please explain.

First of all, thanks for all the info and facts. I do have three car seats but one of them is the first toddler seat we ever purchased for ds#1, when ds#2 was in need of a toddler seat, ds#1 graduated to a larger toddler seat, and now that dd#1 is using it ds#2 has a new car seat as well. So all of the dc's have used it and we have opted to keep it instead of buying three new car seats. I understand the logic that you are giving me I just didn't know what was wrong with our old one. Also, For car seats that say they are convertible from newborn to ~60-80 pounds, won't the car seat be too old before you get your full use from it? Just wondering.
post #28 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by dallaschildren View Post
. Some have said that changes in temperature (reference to climate and weather) over time will weaken the plastic shell of the seat. I do not know if this is true or not.
Oh, it's absolutely true. All plastic has a finite lifespan--if you put PVC pipe outside, for example, it will be its nice flexible and hardy self for a few years, but then will become brittle and crack. Old computers need to be kept in special environments (in museums, etc.) because the housing will just start breaking off.

The danger is that the seat frame must be able to withstand HUGE shear forces in a bad crash. The area of the seat where the belt goes through has to be able to hold together. If it is brittle or weakened, it could snap and the seat would not protect the child from the deceleration.

The six-year rule is, I believe, based on worst-case scenarios--very bad crash, long hot summers and cold winters, etc. It's probably true that even an older seat would hold together in a mild accident. However, I've never really wanted to find out. We just destroyed a 6-yr-old Britax RA, which I had loved and still worked perfectly, but it was worth it.
post #29 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by rbriansgirl View Post
Also, For car seats that say they are convertible from newborn to ~60-80 pounds, won't the car seat be too old before you get your full use from it? Just wondering.
The 3-in-1 seats, yes (another reason to not buy them). Normal higher weight convertibles like Britax, probably not as most kids outgrow them height wise before they do weight wise. I know a lot of moms who have used them a full 6yrs though w/ one child and IMO that's great. I wish I had started w/ one of those instead of going through all I have.
post #30 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by alegna View Post
Is it expired? If so, it's absolutely not safe to use and should be destroyed.
A couple of people have mentioned to "destroy" the car seat after expiration.

I have an infant car seat that just expired (but no infant, no worries ) but I don't have the heart to destroy a perfectly good car seat that's been in storage most of it's life.

I want to give it away for in-home use only, but I know that overuse of car seats often lead to flat-heads! (I personally like the rule of thumb, "car seats are for cars"). There has got to be something worthwhile I can do with this!

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