KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – New babies can add financial stress to your life, and you might be tempted to try to save where you can. While some baby products can be expensive, sometimes it’s just necessary to pay the full price. There are plenty of things you can buy secondhand, but for a few necessities, it’s best to invest in new, high quality products.
It took nearly 30 years for crib safety standards to be updated, and in 2011 they were. Millions of cribs have been recalled in the last decade for everything from drop-sides to poor hardware – dangerous features that proved fatal in some cases. If your family passes down a crib to each generation, you may want to forgo this family heirloom for something new and very likely safer.
2. Crib Mattresses
Firm, clean mattresses are best for new babies. In fact, some research suggests a connection between secondhand mattresses and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, or SIDS. Older crib mattresses also may have chemicals like BPA that may be hazardous to your baby. Those not cleaned thoroughly or not kept in a cool dry place could harbor bacteria or fungi growth. As not all cribs are created equal, if you get a mattress that doesn’t fit snug and tight, ditch it immediately to avoid huge safety risks posed by gaps.
3. Car seats
This may be one of the biggest purchases for your new little one. You can’t even leave the hospital with your baby if you don’t have a properly installed car seat. Safety standards for them are updated often. The American Academy of Pediatrics has a handy list of which seat is best for your child. You’ll be able to tell if a car seat is too old by checking the user manual for the expiration date. Buying a new car seat is worth the investment. Don’t waste your time with hand-me-downs here.
4. Play yards
Whether the play yard is your baby’s primary sleeping setup or just a place for your little one to hang out sometimes where you can keep an eye on him, you should skip the secondhand ones. New safety regulations went into effect in 2013, and unless the used one you’re eyeing was made after that, and you’re checking for product recall updates, make sure you grab a new one.
5. Strollers and carriages
Just like play yards and cribs, there are newer safety standards for strollers and carriages that older models may not meet. The most recent rules for strollers and carriages took effect in 2015. Many strollers purchased since then are most likely still being used by their original owners. If you’ve inspected a stroller thoroughly and checked the Consumer Protection Safety Commission website to rule out any recalls, you may find a gem, but for the safety of your child, and to give you peace of mind, splurge on a brand new one.