Toxic Car Seats - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 05-23-2014, 07:06 AM - Thread Starter
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So time is drawing to a close.  I'm due in two months.  We have to have a car seat to get our baby home from the hospital, but even those that are supposed to be non-toxic or low in toxins have been testing otherwise.  I've visited several blog sites where mothers have sent in samples of foam from the higher end car seats that are supposed to be less toxic (Britax, Orbit, Diono, etc.) and found them to contain chemicals the company stated the foam didn't contain.  The fabrics worry me, too, of course.  Even those things that aren't supposed to be "as harmful" are still very harmful.  I'm now leaning towards borrowing a used one from one of our friends because at least then some of the chemicals have off-gassed, but by how much?  How much can these car seats still harm our baby?  Why must we be forced to choose the least toxic option?  Why must we choose between physical safety and health?  Why are there no car seats made with completely organic fabric and wool or organic fabric and latex?  Anyone know of a place that can create car seats from scratch made to our specifications?

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#2 of 6 Old 05-24-2014, 04:34 PM
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Car seats contain toxins because they are required to meet flame retardant standards.  It sucks, but it's life.  My advice is to buy one now, wash the cover (NEVER the straps) with vinegar added to the water to help combat chemicals, let it air out, and know you're doing the best you can.

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#3 of 6 Old 06-06-2014, 11:57 AM - Thread Starter
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They require fire retardants because the foam they use is solid gasoline. The chemicals remain in the fabric no matter how much you wash it. It's meant to stay there. It's just ridiculous to me that this is still being allowed. This is my manner of nesting, and I'm just shocked that there isn't more of an outcry, that we are just supposed to be accepting. I've been reading several blogs where mamas are actually sending in the foam and fabrics to be tested and finding that they contain chemicals the car seat manufacturers said they did not contain. My daughter is already sensitive because of agent orange exposure. It just really upsets me that I have to choose between safety or health. I shouldn't have to. I shouldn't have to worry about asthma or cancer or her endocrine system or thyroid or reproduction capability, which these chemicals have been linked to causing. I've seen so many mamas here getting upset over immunizations and hospital requirements, but not over car seats or pvc in plastic toys. I'm just so confused and heartbroken.
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#4 of 6 Old 08-08-2014, 09:57 AM
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Hmmm.... this is something I never even thought about. I'm passed the car seat stage for my own kids, but had I known this when they were babies I would have been pretty upset over it. I think the suggestion to remove the cover, wash and let it air out for a time is probably good. It's really sad. It's almost impossible to protect our kids from all the chemicals and poisons in this world.
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#5 of 6 Old 12-01-2014, 06:04 AM
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This thread has been a bit dormant but this is something I've been struggling with as well.

Clek is supposed to be the "safest" as far as flame retardants go.

OP, what did you end up buying?

To put things into perspective, cars themselves are LOADED with nasty flame retardants (though some are worse than others - Honda is one of the best) so I had to let the car seat thing go a little. Instead, I focused on keeping our house as free from flame retardants as possible. New organic/latex mattresses, new mission furniture with latex cushions, no more carpet, etc. And the best you can do is to vacuum often with a HEPA filter since most of the exposure is through broken down flame retardants in the form of dust - and washing hands before eating. Also, since a lot of flame retardants are bromide/chloride based, looking into detoxing toxic halogens with iodine might be helpful.

I'm on the market for a few new cars seats and this is something I'm aware of - it's very difficult!

Mama to Girl 2/00, Girl 1/03, Boy 3/06, Boy 11/10, and coming July 2015!
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#6 of 6 Old 12-01-2014, 08:14 PM
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Originally Posted by DahliaRW View Post
<p>Car seats contain toxins because they are required to meet flame retardant standards.  It sucks, but it's life.  My advice is to buy one now, wash the cover (NEVER the straps) with vinegar added to the water to help combat chemicals, let it air out, and know you're doing the best you can.</p>
DahliaRW is right that you should wash the seat before use. It will save you from problems. Thanks
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