Of all the things you imagined parenthood could be we bet you didn't put "learning how to clean a baby car seat" high on the list. But that's okay – this chore isn't one you'll need to do often and it's pretty straightforward. You should check your owner's manual or online on the manufacturer's site for more info about your specific baby car seat, but in the meantime, here are some easy tips to get you started.
- Remove the cover. This plastic seat cover is where wet and sticky messes like to hide. Was with soap and water so you can get into those nooks and crannies. Don't put it in the washer or dryer – lay flat to dry. Then follow up and wipe down with Lysol® Disinfecting Wipe.
- Next, tackle the baby car seat's buckles. You can often remove the buckles from the seat entirely, but make sure you know how to put them back on properly. Wash the buckle with running water to remove debris, but don't use soap. Once dry, test that each buckle snaps audibly when buckled and replace it on the seat. Or, if you aren't comfortable removing buckles for thorough cleaning, use a Lysol® Disinfecting Wipe or Lysol® Multi-Purpose Cleaner to get the buckles clean and sanitized.
- Freshen fabric with Lysol® Disinfectant Spray. This will sanitize fabric safely and leave it virtually germ- and bacteria-free.
- If baby had a particularly bad diaper-blow-out in the car seat you'll probably have to do more than the above steps. Remove the car seat from the car (if you hadn't already) and dismantle as much as you are comfortable taking apart and reassembling later. Scrub down all plastic parts and spot-clean upholstery according to care labels. You'll want to get as deep a clean as possible and then let the car seat air dry, perhaps in the sun, which has natural whitening properties. Make sure the car's seat is unscathed or take the time to clean it as well. If you don't do your due diligence now, you'll be dreading car rides for weeks to come.
Now that you know a little about how to clean a baby car seat you can be ready for accidents, car sickness and more. But fingers crossed, you'll probably only need to keep the baby's car seat tidy and germ-free until she grows out of it.