4 Steps on How To Wash An Infant Car Seat
We all know that little-children can be messy at times whereby they will tend to spit-up, spill-food and even smear dirt onto the car-seat and it’s you the parent or guardian who is supposed to remove the car-seat and wash it thoroughly so as to keep it looking clean and smelling fresh. However, cleaning a car-seat is not an easy task since the cleaning-process may involve using some elbow-grease and you also need to remember how to disassemble and re-assemble a car-seat during this cleaning-process. On top of that, it’s highly-recommended take special-care of the harness-straps and buckles when cleaning a car-seat and this is due to unknown safety-reasons. So, I have decided to provide you with detailed steps on how to clean a car-seat thoroughly, properly and safely.
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SECTION-1: PREAPRING A CAR-SEAT FOR A THOROUGH CLEANING:
- Choose the appropriate time for washing the car seat: it is recommended to start cleaning your car-seat when you’re very sure that you won’t be using it for a while or if you have a back-up car-seat to use when the other car-seat is being washed. So, the ideal time for cleaning a car-seat might be after your little-child has been taken to bed for a night-sleep. However, in case you’re dealing with some huge-mess like vomit, blown-out diapers and much more, then immediate cleaning of the car-seat is highly-recommended so as to keep it in a good-shape.
- Wipe-off any huge-messes: try using damp-rags, baby-wipes or paper-towels to scoop and wipe away any sticky, loose, chunky and sloppy gunk from the car-seat. In fact, removing this gunk first makes cleaning the remaining stain much easier.
- Carefully remove the infant car-seat: gently remove all the straps holding the car-seat and after uninstall it from the vehicle-seat. This will actually enable you to thoroughly wash the car-seat without having to climb into the car which is a bit disturbing. Likewise, this will prevent the vehicle-seats from getting during the cleaning-process.
- Vacuum or brush the car-seat surface: try to carefully brush-off any crumbs/debris from the car-seat and then gently shake the seat in order to remove any hidden crumbs/debris that may have accumulated in the car-seat edges. After, get a vacuum-cleaner with a small hose-attachment and start vacuuming the cars-eat in order to remove any debris/crumbs stuck within the car-seat partition walls or corners.
- Take-off the cover and straps from the car-seat: most car-seats actually feature removable fabric-covers but you will need to use a user-manual in order to learn how to remove the seat-cover. On the other hand, you may easily remove this cover by unfastening the clips/snaps/buttons starting from the top up to the bottom of the car-seat. after taking off the seat-cover, gently take take-off the straps but try to note their location so that can be able to put them back into place.
SECTION-2: WASHING THE CAR-SEAT COVER AND BASE:
- Spot-clean any stains on the seat’s fabric-cover: after removing the fabric-cover from the car-seat, gently rub a mild-detergent into any visible stains/spots and rub in a circular-motion until these stained-areas thoroughly cleaned. However, in case your car-seat doesn’t feature a removable-cover, then deal with the stains/spots by using a little-soap and sponge until the stain/spot fades away.
- Do some laundry on the fabric-cover: before laundering the seat fabric-cover, check-out the user user-manual or for any cover-labels in order to get specific instructions on how to wash a fabric-cover. However, it’s best to wash the fabric-cover in gentle-cycle while using a mild-detergent and make sure that the fabric-cover is well-rinsed for best results.
- Clean-up the car-seat plastic-base: after completing to wash the fabric-cover, go ahead and wash-up the plastic-base and metallic parts on the car-seat. Wash these parts using a damp-cloth/sponge coupled with a mild-detergent and water. Additionally, thoroughly rub-away any dirt and grime then finish by rinsing this seat-frame under running-water.
SECTION-3: WASHING THE SEAT STRAPS AND BUCKLES:
- Follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer: it very important to use the manufacturer’s instructions when it comes to cleaning-up the car-seat straps and buckles. In fact, most car-seat manufacturer’s advice not to place the harness-straps into a washing-machine or even hand-clean them using harsh detergents. However, the manufacturer’s recommend cleaning the strap-surface using a soft-cloth, gentle soap/detergent and lukewarm-water for best results.
- Gently wipe the harness-straps with water: when cleaning harness-straps always focus on wiping-off any surface stains and never attempt doing any deep-cleaning. In fact, you should only use mild soap/detergent, a soft-cloth and water during the strap cleaning-process.
- Dip the buckle into warm-water: car-seat buckle are usually made-up of plastic or metal and this means that they are capable of holding-up to more vigorous cleaning compared to the straps. So, simply dip the buckle into a bucket filled with lukewarm-water, splatter it around a bit in order to loosen any dirt/debris inside it and after clean-up the buckle-surface using a soft-cloth, water and mild-soap.
- Leave the straps and buckles to air-dry: leaving straps and buckles under fresh-air and sunshine for some good-time is the best way to remove any odors from these components. Additionally, make use that inside-section of the buckle completely dry in order to prevent any corrosion and rusting.
SECTION-4: DRYING-UP THE COVER AND REASSEMBLING THE CARSEAT:
- Dry-up all the car-seat parts thoroughly: incase your car-seat features a removable cover, then hang it into open-air to dry or try passing it through a dryer in case the label allows it. Likewise, place the plastic seat-frame outside to air-dry completely and always remember to only air-dry the harness-straps and buckles in order to keep them in good-shape.
- Eliminate any odors with enough sunshine and time: incase your car-seat does not feature a removable-cover, then just leave the entire car-seat under a sunny place so that it can dry-up and get rid of any odors. Likewise, you may also consider using odor-eliminating sprays on the car-seat cover and base if desired but never spray-down on harness-straps. In fact, you should only rely on air-drying as an odor-eliminator for the straps.
- Reassemble the car-seat: once the car-seat frame, cover and other parts have dried-up completely, reattach the fabric-cover onto the seat-base while referring to the instructions-manual if necessary.