Second hand/used car seats

It is not recommended to use a used car seat, as you will not know the history of the seat (for instance, whether it was in a collision).

However, if you decide to use a used seat, here are some important factors to consider: 

  • Does the car seat still have the original manual or booklet?
  • Is it clear what height and weight the car seat is designed for?
  • Does the car seat have an expiry date embossed in the plastic and a round National Safety Mark sticker?
  • Has the car seat been recalled? Parents can check on the Transport Canada website for recalls
  • Has the car seat ever been in a crash? If so, it should not be used again, even if it looks undamaged.
  • When parents want to discard a car seat that is no longer safe to use, they should cut the harness straps and tear the fabric first. Damaging the shell will ensure the seat is not taken from the garbage and reused. 

The Health Canada website has further information on second-hand car seats.

All child car seats and booster seats sold in Canada have an expiry date on them. You should not use child car seats and booster seats past their expiry date. You should dispose of seats with expired dates. Do not give the seats to friends or relatives, donate them to charities, or sell them second hand.  See Transport Canada for more information.