Car seat trials (1275)

Key points below

What is a car seat trial?Car seat trial

A car seat trial is a test to see how your infant does in their car seat before going home. Some infants can’t safely ride sitting up in a car seat and may have trouble breathing during a longer ride home. This is a practice test in the hospital to see how it goes before the real ride home. If your infant has been in the hospital since birth they may need a car seat trial within 3 days of going home.

How is it done?

Your infant will be put in their car seat. They must be able to be in a position that is set by the seats’ manufacturer. Infants are watched for breathing problems for the time that it will take to ride home for 90 minutes. If ride home is more than 90 minutes, the time monitored will be up to, but not be more than 3 hours.

Infants who have trouble during the test may need to be sent home in a car seat where infants lie down. This type is called a car bed.

Safety tips

Additional Resources

*Go to for a list of car seat fitting stations.


Call your child’s doctor, nurse, or clinic if you have any questions or concerns or if your child has special health care needs that were not covered by this information.