How Long Are Graco Car Seats Good For: Understanding Their Lifespan

In this article, we aim to tell you how long are Graco car seats good for, provide comprehensive information on the lifespan of Graco car seats. As one of the most reliable car seat brands in the market, Graco has established a reputation for providing parents with the necessary security they need for their children on the road.

Why Is Knowing the Lifespan of Graco Car Seats Important?

Using old and expired car seats may pose a safety risk. Therefore, understanding the lifespan of Graco car seats is crucial for parents and guardians to ensure that their children’s safety is not compromised.

Staying updated with the safety features and maintenance of Graco car seats can also lead to additional benefits, such as saving money and minimizing accidents related to car seats.

How do I find out when my car seat expires?

Each Graco car seat is marked with its Date of Manufacture (DOM) on one of your car seat’s labels. To identify your car seat’s useful life, check out your manual or look for it stamped into the car seat.

Both will say “Do not use this child restraint…” and will reference either a 10-year useful life (for belt-positioning boosters and for harnessed seats with steel-reinforced belt paths) or 7-year useful life (for harnessed seats with plastic-reinforced belt paths, such as the Contender™ 65 Convertible Car Seat).

You’ll have to do a very simple calculation to determine the car seat expiration date. Date of Manufacture + Useful Life = Car Seat Expiration Date


Date of Manufacture (3/15/2020) + Useful Life for a steel-reinforced booster (10 years) = Expiration Date of 3/15/2030

How Long Are Graco Car Seats Good For?

Typically, Graco car seats have a 7 to 10-year useful life period. After this time, the seats expire and become unsafe to use. 

According to Graco:

  • Infant Car Seats: The seat will expire 7 years after the date of manufacture on the label and the date label can be found on the back of the seat.

  • Convertible Car Seats: The expiration date for convertible car seats is 10 years after the date of manufacture. Convertible car seats expire 10 years after the date of manufacture. In addition, the date label is found on the back of your car seat.

  • All-in-One Car Seats: These seats need to be tossed and their use discontinued 10 years after the date of manufacture. The label can also be found on the back of the seat.

  • Harness Boosters: Discontinue use and toss this seat 10 years after the manufacture date listed on the back of the seat, because it will be expired.

  • Belt-Positioning Booster Seats: These seats expire 10 years after the manufacture date listed on the label that is affixed to the back of the seat.

Expiration date for car seats Graco

It is important to note that Graco car seats come with an expiration date, which is usually stated on the back or bottom of the seat. As such, knowing the expiration date of Graco car seats is equally significant to ensure that they are not used beyond their intended lifespan.

Factors That Affect the Lifespan of Graco Car Seats

How long are Graco car seats good for is affected by how well they are maintained.

  • Regular cleaning and maintenance of car seats, as indicated in the manufacturer’s manual, can extend their lifespan.
  • Additionally, the amount of wear and tear the car seat experiences can also affect its lifespan. For instance, reusing a car seat that has been in a previous accident is not recommended, as its protective features may have been compromised, leading to a shortened lifespan.

Therefore, it is crucial to adhere to the usage and maintenance guidelines provided by the manufacturer to ensure that Graco car seats last for their expected lifespan.

Graco Car Seat

What To Do with Expired Graco Car Seats?

Used or expired car seats can be dangerous, especially if you do not know the car seat’s history.

Once the seat has expired, check to see if there is a recycling center in your area. If throwing the seat away, you should first take measures to make the seat unusable by cutting the harness straps, removing the seat cover, and by writing “DO NOT USE/EXPIRED” on the seat. Graco® car seats are not recyclable.

Tips for Maintaining the Lifespan of Graco Car Seats

Maintaining the quality and safety of your Graco car seat is essential to extend its life and ensure your child’s safety while inside your vehicle. Here are some tips to help you:

  • First, it’s essential to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines on cleaning the car seat. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive scrubbing tools that may damage the car seat’s materials. In general, a mild soap solution and water are enough to clean the car seat thoroughly.
  • Secondly, proper storage is also essential in maintaining the car seat’s quality. When not in use, store the car seat in a dry and cool place, away from direct sunlight and heat sources like heaters or radiators.
  • Lastly, always follow the instructions on how to install and buckle your child properly in the car seat. Double-check if the car seat is correctly installed through the car’s seat belt or LATCH system. Additionally, make sure that the straps are tight and snug, but not too tight to cause discomfort to your child.

Registering Your New Graco Car Seat

Manufacturers often recall their products when safety issues are detected. In light of this, Graco allows customers to register their car seats so that when there’s a recall, they’ll notify them. 

You can register your seat in 3 ways:

Graco Car Seats


In conclusion, knowing the expiration date and taking preventive measures to maintain the quality of Graco car seats can help you ensure your child’s safety while riding in your vehicle. Regular checkups on the car seat can also help identify signs of wear and tear that may warrant replacement.