During the bitterly cold winters, we all want to keep out kids warm and snug. We help our kids zip up their coats. And we all make our way to our cars for the daily commute to and from school. We also help our kids get comfy in their car seats…with their thick coats still on. But did you know that buckling a kid in the car with a thick winter coat is more than just a faux pas? It can actually be very dangerous and render your kid’s car seat ineffective. So how can you keep your child warm in the car seat?
The experts reckon that a bulky winter coat prevents a seatbelt or harness from being snug enough to keep your kid safe in the event of a crash. The layers between your kid’s body and the seatbelt or harness can leave enough room for your child to be ejected in the event that you need to slam on the brakes. They say that if you’re able to squeeze more than two fingers between your kid’s body and the harness, it’s just not safe enough.
How to tell if your kid’s coat is OK for the car seat
Buckle your kid into the car seat with his coat on. After you have everything ready, unbuckle your child, without adjusting the straps, and then take off his coat. If there’s more than the two-finger space between your child’s body and the harness, you know that the car seat and the coat don’t make a great combo.
Alternatives to keep your child warm in the car seat
Once you’ve spent all morning getting them to put their damn coats on, it can be a real pain to take your kids’ coats off again once you’re in the car. But it’s always better to be safe than to be sorry. Once you’ve securely strapped them into their car seats, here are some other heat-saving tips you can try:
1. Use the heater
It’s a no-brainer basically. So just go ahead and turn up the heat to ensure everyone inside the car is warm enough.
2. Use a car seat blanket
There are quite a few different types of car seat blankets available on our market. And they’re much safer to use than thick jackets. If you’re not keen on splashing out cash, just use your kiddo’s favorite blankie that he uses in the house.
3. Reverse-wear the coats
Once your kids are strapped into their car seats, put their jackets on backward, over the straps of the harnesses. It’s convenient since you already have the coats in the car, so it’s a great way to use the extra layers that would have otherwise been lying around in the car.