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The dangers of used car seats

An important duty of Texas parents is to find the right car seat for their young children. Until a child is old enough to be buckled into a standard car seat, young children require a separate child seat during car rides. However, the American Academy of Pediatrics warns that purchasing a car safety seat secondhand can present possible dangers for your child. There are a number of reasons why parents should stick to buying new child car seats.

One of the major problems with secondhand car seats is that you do not know the history of the seat. It is possible the seat was damaged and you do not know about it. Some people do receive old seats from the previous owner, so it is possible to ask about whether the seat was in a previous car accident and other aspects of its former use. However, many people simply buy an old seat at a garage sale without asking for more information. Others may receive a secondhand seat through a third party without being able to ask the original owner about the seat's prior use.

Another problem with used seats is that you do not know if the seat has been recalled for safety reasons. Parents magazine points out that millions of child safety seats have undergone recalls in the 2010 decade, but many of these recalled seats have not been replaced or had their flaws fixed. If you have the manufacturer’s information on the seat, it is possible to check the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) website to see if the seat has been recalled. Unfortunately, not all secondhand seats have the manufacturer’s label on it, so you cannot always tell if the seat has been recalled or not.

While it is true that not all secondhand seats come with damages or defects, many of them can present hidden dangers. If a buyer cannot verify the use history of the seat, the buyer may be inviting a safety risk.

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