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5 year life of car seat...wwyd

(34 Posts)

Hi

I bought a friends 2nd hand bugaboo chameleon, and her maxi cosi car seat and isofix base. I know the advice re 2nd hand car seats but I know this family well and am confident the seat has never been involved in an accident.

Anyway, I came across a thread on here that mentioned the 5 year life span of a car seat. Despite this being dc3 I had never heard of such a thing. My friends eldest dc is 5 in November, and my dc is due next month, I've just read the instruction manual for both the seat and the base and they both say product should be disposed of after 5 years - but lets face it they want to sell more products..

My friend has 2 dc, so the seat and base would have been in use for 2 of the 5 years. Would you replace both?

Bump smile

raininginbaltimore Sat 01-Sep-12 16:55:07

I would and I did for ds. We were given one. It isn't from the manufacturers, I read it in which. The materials can degrade. But I am obsessive about car safety, whereas I might not be so bothered about other stuff.

5madthings Sat 01-Sep-12 17:02:13

we bought new after using first stage seat for ds1 and ds2 we got a new one for ds3 and used it for ds4 aa well and then got a new one for dd. i just wasnt prepared to risk it. it may look fine but could break in an accident. i couldnt live with the what if.

Oh no

Yorky Sat 01-Sep-12 19:45:56

We bought car seat and base for DC1 who was born in Jan 07. Its an American model and does say on it do not use after Dec 12,
DC4 is currently using the seat, and will be 8mo at the end of Dec, I am not buying another car seat for her last couple of months in rear facing seat. Going by weight (I don't have small babies) she will probably get a Kiddy seat for Christmas!

Fair enough for a month but this would be the entire time it was in use basically yorky

I'm just a bit cynical as to how much it can actually be past it's best, and how much is just playing on parents fears and wanting new sales

Yorky Sat 01-Sep-12 21:00:31

With you on the cynicism Fish smile

I know the heat in a car can have a bad effect on the life of the plastic, but they are only in actual regular use for a relatively short time - even we've only used it about 9months out of every two years. The rest of the time they're usually in the back of a cupboard - nice and cool and dark, which has to be easier on the seat.

TBH I only looked for the date on it because of the MN discussion

raininginbaltimore Sat 01-Sep-12 22:39:04

But the research wasn't funded by car seat manufacturers. I wouldn't risk it.

Bloody hell - I've paid for it now

onedev Sun 02-Sep-12 17:05:53

I didn't know about it until I read it on MN either, so you're not alone. Problem is, once I knew, I had to change as I couldnt risk it.

lljkk Sun 02-Sep-12 17:08:34

I would just use it, without giving the matter another thought, not the PC answer, but that's the truth.

UV: can't get it thru car windows.

Super high Heat in the car: yeah, we have lots of that in the UK (Not).

Even less extreme temps in our cupboards.

Extreme cold: we don't have extreme cold in most of the UK, either.

If it was left in the direct sun long days, out in the snow, or lots of strap washing due to baby puke, I would get concerned.

EldonAve Sun 02-Sep-12 17:19:23

I would use it

I wish I could find some info as to why they say five years and why 'from purchase'. Surely it could have been in a warehouse somewhere a year before my friend bought it an how is that different from being in her garage confused

I am a bit puzzled by this too. I have stage 1/2/3 seats for both my children. Suitable up to age 12 or when they no longer need to use a seat.

So am I supposed to chuck them after a few years even though they are sold as from 9kg+ to age 12ish?

Although both my children were well over 12m before we started to use them, kept them in rear facing infant seats as long as possible.

That's a good point confused

Quip Sun 02-Sep-12 17:29:47

I'd use it. One of our car seats has been kicking around for more than 5 years now. We need it only for another year so I'm not forking out another £150 for a new one.

LegArmpits Sun 02-Sep-12 17:37:57

I'd use it. Wouldn't even enter my mind not to. DC3 is using DC1s stage two seat with a fair age gap in between and a DC2.
Bastard marketing, what a cracking ruse the seat manufacturers have pulled.

cheesesarnie Sun 02-Sep-12 17:41:47

ooh i didnt know that either! so thankyou!

peanutMD Sun 02-Sep-12 17:48:43

Group 1-2-3 are not intended to be used from 9 months until 12 years, this is the the age range it is suitable for.

Having seen Road Safety demonstration I saw a lady inspect a 0+ car seat and declare it fine, right before the leader dropped it from head height when it practically fell apart.

I would never risk it now.

ValiumQueen Sun 02-Sep-12 17:55:03

I am as tight as tight comes, but even I have taken my two infant car seats to the tip. I could not live with the thought that someone else's child could get hurt, so refused to sell them on. I am currently in a quandary about my sliver cross seat as when I emailed the company, they said it did not have a use by date, and had never heard of them deteriorating over time. I am likely going to buy a new one for DC3.

pinkappleby Sun 02-Sep-12 18:18:51

All car seats have little dials on them, one for the month and one for the year so that you can date from manufacture. They are quite tiny, you have to search. I would and am using one that reaches 5 years part way through the time I will be using it. My reasoning - I think there must be some margin in the time, other seat manufacturers say ok up to 10 years and they can't be that different, and I think the guideline must be for seats that are in continuous use and mine hasn't been.

FWIW I wouldn't use a stage 1-2-3 car seat for 9 months - 12 years.

Interesting. Those that would change, would you change the base as well as the seat?

HappyCamel Sun 02-Sep-12 18:23:58

When we took the covers off my Chicco car seat to wash it there was a sticker with an expiry date under them on the plastic. It had a six year life span. Mine was 2nd hand from a friend too but I'm going to buy a new one because dc2 is due in December and it goes out of date in January.

HappyCamel Sun 02-Sep-12 18:25:36

I'm getting a cabriofix and isofix base so that it fits my bugaboo. Last time I managed with a car seat that didn't fit the travel system. I wish I'd just bought a new one when I had dd now, it would still be in date and I could have used it with the wheels all this time.

I'll strip the cover off and see of there is a manufacturing date, on the instructions it says 5 years from purchase which is what made me a bit hmm

All very interesting. My DCs are 3 and 5, I would be happy to get them high back boosters in a couple of years to replace them I suppose, the underneath of the straps looked revolting when I last took the covers off to wash after travel sickness vomiting.

peanutMD Sun 02-Sep-12 18:54:40

I think they allow for 18 months shop storage as usually shops have to sell within this time frame which is why you see last seasons colours for rediculous prices.

saltnpepashere Sun 02-Sep-12 21:15:56

I started a thread about this a few days ago. Can anyone post a link to some independent research about it - when I have googled it just comes up with baby websites or the car seat companies themselves.

Am sceptical about it myself, particularly when, as others said, they are only used for about a year at a time anyway.

Also, what is the point of buying a group 1,2,3 car seat if you are not going to use it from 9kg to 12 years?

I've decided to get a new seat and base. I'm not convinced that there is anything wrong with the other one but really is it worth the risk? Thanks for all the contributions smile

iwantedanonymity Tue 04-Sep-12 12:12:10

unimpressed if this means that having bought a kiddy guardian to last DD1 til she no longer needs a booster i'll have to bin it when she is 8 and buy a new one to last til aged 12 and another for DD2

That is exactly what it means, I really think it needs highlighting, lots of people buy the age 4-12 seats and will have no idea it mightn't be safe

notso Tue 04-Sep-12 12:38:23

I don't know about Maxi-Cosi but when I checked about DS1's old seat on the Britax website it said,
"If you have bought the seat and know it's history, in principle there is nothing against further use, if it corresponds to the current valid safety."

Shangers Tue 04-Sep-12 12:50:10

"All car seats have little dials on them"

thanks pinkappleby! I tasked my DH with checking DS1s cabriofix for DC2s arrival in December. He swore blind that there were no dates on it but we didn't know about the dials - For anyone who is looking for the date on a maxi cosi cabriofix (apparently manufactured in 2008!) it's inside the little box bit on the back of the seat - it's virtually impossible to read it so I tried taking a photo of it with a flash but couldn't get the right angle.... what did work was putting a piece of paper onto it and rubbing with a pencil - gave a pretty clear print and think I've got it figured out now.... which means I've got a new problem now..... by the time I start using it, the seat will be 4.5 years old and I'd probably have the baby in it for a year sooooo..... and since we live in a hot country I'd say that it has had its fair share of sitting in a hot car or cupboard.....

Now I'm worried about the isofix base that we have - does anyone know if they are the same plastic? I guess I'll have to get it out and have a look!

By the way, I had emailed Maxi cosi a few months ago about where to find the date and this was their singularly unhelpful! answer:

"Thank you for your enquiry.

Maxi-Cosi recommends that car seats are replaced when they reach five-six years old due to the natural degradation of the plastics and polystyrenes involved in making them safe for use. After five years these materials may have become brittle with age, and in the event of an accident they may break and not provide the level of safety that you would want for your child.

Please note that this is purely a recommendation. "

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