Children’s car seats and booster seats – How long are they safe?

car_seat

TP 14563 – Consumer Information Notice
Child Restraint Systems

Road Safety
Information: 1-800-333-0371

All children’s car seats and booster seats sold in Canada have an expiry or useful life date on them, even though this is not required by regulation. Manufacturers do this to inform current owners and prospective buyers of the potential risks of using car seats and booster seats that may be missing important parts, labels or instructions and/or may have an unknown history, which could lead to less than optimal safe performance when needed. People should not use children’s car seats and booster seats past their expiry or useful life date. Beyond this date, the car seat should be permanently discarded rather than donated to a charitable organization, second hand store, or given to friends or relatives. It is also important to note that if you own a car seat or booster seat made before January 1, 2012, under Health Canada’s Canada Consumer Product Safety Act, you may not be able to advertise, sell, or give it away because it may not meet the latest requirements set out by Health Canada. For further information regarding theCanada Consumer Product Safety Act, please contact Health Canada:

Media Enquiries
Health Canada, Ottawa
613-957-2983

Public Enquiries
Health Canada, Ottawa
613-957-2991
1-866 225-0709

Manufacturers give an expiry or useful life date because over time:

  • frequent use and exposure to sunlight can damage and weaken plastic;
  • safe-use labels on the products fade or become hard to read;
  • instruction manuals have likely been lost;
  • food, cleaners, drinks and other materials that have been spilled or used on webbing, buckles, adjusters and other parts may prevent them from working safely;
  • the history or condition of the car seat or booster seat becomes hard to check (was it in a crash, was it stored in a place or in a way that caused damage to parts, etc.?);
  • safety regulations and standards may have changed, so safer products may now be on the market; and
  • second or subsequent owners may not get product safety recall notices if problems arise.

In Canada, all provinces and territories require infants and toddlers to be buckled up in the appropriate car seat. Several provinces also require booster seats for children who have outgrown a child car seat but are too small for a regular seat belt. The provincial and territorial laws also say that the children’s car seats and booster seats must be certified to Canada Motor Vehicle Safety Standards and must be used according to the manufacturer’s instructions. If you don’t follow the instructions or if you use them past their expiry or useful life dates – you may be putting your child’s safety at risk and you may be found guilty of breaking the law.

Listed below, in alphabetical order, are the manufacturers who sell car seats and/or booster seats in Canada, the brand name and the useful life period of their products. Depending on the make or model, they can be used safely for five to nine years. Transport Canada strongly advises parents and caregivers follow all of the manufacturer’s instructions and respect the expiry or useful life dates.

ManufacturerBrand Name(s)Product Type1 Useful LifeBaby Trend Inc.Baby TrendI6 yearsBritax Child Safety, Inc.BritaxI, Traveller Plus EL6 yearsBritaxI/C, B7 yearsBritaxC/B9 yearsCanadian Tire Corp.ApramoB9 yearsSparcoB6 yearsChicco USA, Inc.ChiccoI6 years from manufacturer date, or date of purchase (proof of purchase required)Combi USA, Inc.CombiI, B7 yearsDionoRadian R-seriesI,C,B8 years as “I or C” + 2 extra years as “B”MontereyB6 yearsDorel Juvenile GroupCosco, Eddie Bauer, Safety 1stI, I/C, C/B, B6 yearsMaxi CosiI, B6 yearsQuinny, LuxI6 yearsCosco, Eddie Bauer, Safety 1stI/C/B8 yearsEvenflo Company Inc.EvenfloI, I/C, C/B, B6 yearsEvenfloI/C/B8 yearsGraco Children’s ProductsGracoI, I/C7 yearsGracoC/B, B10 yearsHarmony Juvenile ProductsHarmonyB, C/B6 yearsLearning Curve Brands, Inc.First Years, CompassI, I/C, B7 yearsMagna Aftermarket Inc./ CLEK Inc.CLEKB7 yearsOrbit Baby Inc.Orbit BabyI7 yearsPeg-Pérego S.p.A.Peg-PéregoI5 yearsAll seats manufactured after 01/01/2011I, I/C, B7 yearsSunshine Kids Juvenile ProductsSunshine KidsI/C8 yearsSunshine KidsB6 yearsNote 1: I = Infant; I/C = Infant and Child; B = Booster; C/B = Child and Booster; I/C/B = Infant, Child and Booster

Transport Canada: 1-800-333-0371

Release Date: March 30, 2011

Date modified: 2013-12-11

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