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Children's Hospital at Dartmouth Hitchcock (CHad)
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Child Safety Seat Installation

Tips for installing a child safety seat properly

Unless your car seat is installed properly, your child's safety could be in danger. Every child safety seat has different installation instructions.

To view installation videos, visit The Right Fit - Car Seat Installation


  1. Read the instruction manual and your vehicle owner's manual in child safety seat installation. Use either the lower anchors of the LATCH system or seat belt to secure the seat in place.
  2. Place the child safety seat in the back seat of your vehicle. Follow instructions in manuals.
  3. Installation must be tight. Check this at the path of the seat belt or the lower anchor strap. The child safety seat should not move more than an 1inch side to side or front to back.
  4. When using a forward-facing seat with a harness, use the top tether to reduce movement of the top of the child safety seat.
  5. When using a rear-facing seat, make sure the angle for the seat is appropriate. Follow the manufacturer's guidelines.

If you have question, certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians can help you. To locate an inspection station near you, visit

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