Second Hand Child Seats
The best advice is do not buy a second-hand child seat.
You cannot be certain of its history. It may have been involved in an accident and the damage may not be visible. Very often the instructions are missing from second-hand seats which makes it more difficult to be sure that you are fitting and using it correctly.
Second-hand seats are also likely to be older, to have suffered more wear and tear and may not be designed to current safety standards.
It is far better to buy a new child seat. Prices range dramatically, and it is not necessary to buy the most expensive one. Ask your local Road Safety Department (part of your Council) whether they know of any child seat discount schemes.
If you must use a second-hand seat, only accept one from a family member or friend (don't buy one from a second-hand shop, through the classified ads or online). Only accept one from a family member or friend if you are absolutely certain that you know its history, it comes with the original instructions and it is not too old.
Before you agree to accept the seat:
- Examine it carefully for damage (but remember, not all damage to child seats is visible to the naked eye).
- Make sure the manufacturer's instructions are available.
- Check the manufacturer's advice about how old the seat should be before it needs to be replaced.
- Make sure the seat is suitable for your child's weight and height.
- Try the seat in your car - if you cannot get it to fit securely, do not buy it.
- Check that the seat meets the United Nations standard Regulation 44.04 - look for the 'E' mark, or an i-size seat.