23 answers

Do Car Seats Need to Be Only So Many Years Old?

I thought I once read that Car seats were illegal after they were so many years old. Did I make this up or imagine it? I am looking to buy a forward facing car seat soon and someone gave me one of their old ones, so any information you can give me would be great!

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Sorry if this is a repeat of what someone said, but it's also important to know the history of the car seat (i.e. if it has been in an accident, etc.)
If that is an unknown, it's better to be safe than sorry and buy a new one!

More Answers

I have never heard carseats being illegal. I know that not having the right one, will cost you a fine or your childs life.
But I called the local fire station because I was unsure about the requirements for my 4 year old.
Children are supposed to be in a 5 point harness until they are 40 lbs. Then they can move to a booster after 40 lbs.
Babies under 1 year old should be rear facing, no matter how much they weigh. You can buy rear facing carseats that go up to 40 lbs in case your child reaches 20 lbs before they are one, or just grow out of the infant carseat before 1. Which my son will, so I have to go buy a rear facing carseat that is bigger. Hopes this answered your question! =)

1 mom found this helpful


Car seats have expiration dates. Check the side for a sticker that has the expiration date. Or they should not be used if they are older than 5 years. Also, you will want to verify that the car seat has not been in an accident.

There is a Just Between Friends Children's and Maternity Consignment Sales event coming up March 13-15th at the Overland Park International Trade Center (115th and Metcalf). They will have car seats, as well as lots of other stuff, that you can check out.

Good luck!

I don't know about them being illegal, but you do need to get new car seats every 5 years because old plastic gets brittle/stressed after many years in the heat & cold of your car.

God bless!

Sorry if this is a repeat of what someone said, but it's also important to know the history of the car seat (i.e. if it has been in an accident, etc.)
If that is an unknown, it's better to be safe than sorry and buy a new one!

I don't believe it is illegal, but I think they recommend not to use them if they are older than 5 years due to the fact that they may not be as secure. Overtime the plastic in them can fail and keep your child as safe. I have three almost four children and used the same seat for my first two, but changed when my youngest was forward facing because our seat was over 5 years old and it was obvious to me that it needed replaced. Good luck!

You didn't imagine it. Newer ones have an "expiration date", but the standard guideline is 6 years, dependent on the manufacturer. I don't know if "illegal" is the correct terminology, but safety organizations recommend not using one older than that. You should be able to find a lot of information on the manufacturers website and Consumer Product Safety Commission websites and the like.

Carseats do expire now they are stamped on the back of the seat,this started I want to say 5-6 yrs ago maybe longer.If you have and are using a carseat that is much older I would discard it and buy a new one.They aren't considered safe after several yrs they have wear marks on the plastic and have been in an accident that is headon the airbags have deployed and the vehicle is totaled.I'm sure i'm missing a few more key items but I think you get the point.Also with any carseat that is used how do you know if it has been mistreated in an accident or how old it is also when it is taken apart for a cleaning it needs to go back directly how it was taken off one lack of loop on the belt will send your child flying so if it doesn't have the original manual how do you know for sure it is correctly installed.You could call the 1-800# on the carseat and give them the serial # to see if it has been recalled but it is highly recomended that no used carseat should be used or given to someone else alot of second hand stores are now not selling or buying used carseat's because of the saftey of the child.

After 5-6 years the plastic starts to deteriorate. I don't know if they're illegal, but I certainly wouldn't feel comfortable using one. Just check the date on the seat, and if it's expired you're going to have to get a new one.

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