If you are looking to buy a car seat there are important things to consider.
To give your child the best protection when travelling, the restraint needs to be right for your child and fit the vehicle correctly, following the manufacture instructions.
The car seat needs to be right for your child now and as they grow. It is recommended that you look to purchase a restraint from an outlet that has a child restraint technician or experienced staff who can assist you, answer your questions and provide advice as needed. Child restraint technicians can be found on NZTA's website.
The Warehouse also stock a range of Plunket recommended car seats. Car seats can also be purchased from specialist nursery stores and other retailers.
Purchasing a second-hand car seat may be a cheaper option but how can you be sure the restraint is going to protect your child in a crash or sudden stop? It is strongly recommended that you avoid buying second-hand if possible.
If buying over the internet you need to know that you can return the restraint if it doesn’t fit securely and correctly in your vehicle.
Ask the owner of the car seat if it has ever been involved in a crash. If it has, even a minor one, don’t buy it. You can’t always tell if there is damage or weakness to the restraint after a crash.
Check the car seat isn’t too old. Look on the back of the restraint and/or the instruction manual.
You may find a date of manufacture or a "don’t use after…" date on the restraint or in the instruction book. A car seat shouldn’t be used after it is 10 years old, some as few as six years from manufacture.
If you’re thinking of buying second-hand, this checklist will help you decide if the car seat you are looking to buy will be right for your child, fit your vehicle and be in excellent condition to offer best protection.