1) Make sure the harness straps are AT or BELOW the shoulders and the harness is buckled snugly without twisting.
|Straps are below the shoulder; harness is snug and flat.|
|This is more important than people realize! The chest clip positions the straps for a collision. Otherwise the straps could slide off the shoulders and the child could be seriously injured. Chest clip on the chest! No belly clips!|
|Evenflo, for example, requires the handle to be down and 1.5 inches of space all around it. |
The general rule of thumb when uncertain is to keep the handle down.
|Any extra product or thick clothing/coat between baby and the seat can disrupt the way the carseat works.|
It can also prevent the harness from fitting snugly.
5) Make sure all hard or sharp projectiles are secured. Read this article about how a sippy cup severely injured a boy in a collision.
This is all the crazy sounding carseat safety stuff condensed into 5 simple steps. Memorize them and make them habitual. It will not be annoying or time consuming after you make it a routine. :)