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Safe Kids Greater Houston

Car Seat Replacement Guidelines

    Car crashes are a leading cause of death for children in the United States. Texas law requires that children be properly restrained in a car seat or booster until age 8 OR 4’9. As Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians (CPSTs), we strive to educate families on the correct installation and usage of car seats. In the process of educating families, we sometimes come across a seat that is no longer safe for a child to use (due to expiration, defects, missing parts, etc.). If this is the case, we want you as a caregiver to be prepared to replace your child’s seat for their safety. Through the provision of grant funding, we have a limited number of replacement seats available at the CPST’s discretion. We as CPSTs want to ensure all children are riding safely in their parents vehicles. However, it is the responsibility of a parent to provide child safety seats, not our program. Our responsibility is to educate on the proper installation and usage. While not all of our sites, have replacement seats available, below are some basic guidelines we use when making a decision to replace seats.

  • Have a vehicle or access to a vehicle to bring you to the car seat appointment
  • Car seats can only be installed correctly when operating a vehicle with working seat belts. Please know that if your seat belts are not working, we may not be able to provide a seat, if it cannot be correctly installed.
  • Seats are provided to low-income families receiving some form of government assistance; be prepared to show proof of eligibility
  • Children must be present to receive a replacement seat. If pregnant, you must be in your 3rd trimester.
  • We will assist you with one car seat per child (if replacement is needed) for ONLY one vehicle. We as CPSTs educate you as a caregiver to be able to properly move and correctly install your child’s seat from vehicle to vehicle and caregiver to other caregivers. Additionally, we are not able to provide seats for the duration of your child’s time in a car seat (birth to atleast 8 years old).
  • Replacement seats will NOT be provided:
    • as short-term loans (no weekend loaners).
    • to babysitters, paid caregivers, or child care programs.
    • to grandparents or other relatives (unless the grandparent or other relative is the primary caregiver).
    • to foster parents; foster parents are not eligible for car seats as they receive daily reimbursement for the basic needs of the foster child.
  • The car seat technician makes the final decision on car seat replacement
  • If your car seat is determined to need replacement, Safe Kids Greater Houston will keep the old seat for proper disposal
  • We are a grant funded program, and ask that you make a donation when receiving replacement seat(s)
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