Should I replace my childs carseat?

Amy - posted on 02/10/2009 ( 9 moms have responded )




I got in a car accident today, the carseat was in the car but my child wasn't in it. The car was hit on the lefthand rear and the seat was in the left rear seat, there was minimal damage to the door where the seat was. Do i need to get a new car seat even though it was a minor crash and no child in it?


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Donna - posted on 10/25/2009




I would replace it, see if your insurance company covers it, they should do!!

Laura - posted on 10/25/2009




I would call the police department and your insurance agent. I'm sure that they would have recommendations. I wonder if insurance would cover the cost of a new one if it was damaged as a result of the accident-it's worth looking into! Glad that you are ok!!

Kristin - posted on 10/24/2009




It depends on the seat manufacturer. Some seats allow unaccupied seats to be used depending on the severity of the crash. Others say they need to be replaced regardless. As much of a pain as it is fight the insurance company if your seat manual says it needs to be replaced and they refuse tel them you want a letter signed saying they are responsible if a crash occurs with you child in that same seat and your child is injured. I did it and the insurance company replced two seats in my husbands truck a safety 1st apex 65 $135 and a britax marathon $279.

Jessica - posted on 02/11/2009




???? call your local police department or someone who does the installments in your city. The police department in my city says to never use a car seat that has been in an accident. Just be safe

Julie - posted on 02/10/2009




Unfortunately, with everything I've read and my knowledge of how plastic works (I'm a structural engr - lots of mechanics of materials courses), because the car seat was near the impact, it would have absorbed a lot of the energy dispersed during the crash (had it been on the opposite side of the car, it would not have absorbed as much).

An impact load will weaken the plastic a lower the yeild strength (the maxium weight or impact it can withstand in the future).  Plastic under normal temps will act as a brittle material - that means that plastic will take on load until a yeild load is met, at which point failure occurs and no load can be sustained (this is as opposed to ductile material that can still sustain load after failure).  So because the yeild load has been lowered in your seat due to the accident, if you were to get into another accident, the plastic may fail at that time. 

Okay, this is starting to read like a techincal paper.  Bottom line is if I were in your shoes, I'd be replacing the car seat.

Alison - posted on 02/10/2009




Unless there was damage done to the actual carseat, I wouldn't. Glad to hear you are okay!

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