When Should You Convert Your Child to a Forward–Facing Car Seat?

At Evenflo, child safety is more than a responsibility. It’s an obsession. We design our car seats to offer the utmost in protection, and just as importantly, to be easy to use properly. That way they can safeguard little ones of all sizes. You could say we know car seat safety backwards and forwards. And now you can too. By following these guidelines from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), you’ll know when it’s time to go from rear- to forward-facing with your child’s car seat. That’s just one way we’ve made it our legacy to protect yours.

  • Always check the car seat manufacturer's instructions for upper and lower weight/height limits.
  • At a minimum, keep infants rear-facing until one year of age and at least 20 pounds. Experts recommend rear-facing as long as possible, which means until they have reached the height or weight limits of your rear-facing car seat. Check your instruction manual to find the maximum height and weight recommended for your child’s car seat.
  • Parents may wonder if legs are at risk for injury as children grow and remain rear-facing. Children commonly sit with their legs crossed or resting on the back of the vehicle seat. Risk of injury to legs in a crash is low, and injuries to the lower extremities are usually less severe with fewer long-term complications than injuries to the head, neck, or spine. These more serious injuries tend to occur more commonly when a child is seated in the forward-facing position.
  • Older children with poor head control within the height and weight requirements of a rear-facing car seat may benefit from staying rear-facing longer.

The more you know, the better you can care for your child. For the advice and support you need, contact us at our ParentLink Consumer Resource Center, available from 8:00 to 5:00 p.m. ET. You’ll get complete access to expert safety guidance, installation instruction, step-by-step product assistance, replacement support, warranty help and more.   But then, that type of service is what you’d expect. Because at Evenflo, we’re all about you (and your baby) getting the most from your parenting experience.

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