Most of the baby gear items are purchased new at the store and the original owners often return the merchandise to the store or manufacturer, but not all unsafe baby gear is taken off the market. When baby gear is donated to thrift stores and other second hand stores, parents can save a ton of money buying baby gear for a newborn or infant, but there is always the chance a safety risk is right around the corner. Learn how to safely buy used baby gear and keep your infant safe.
Research Manufacturers Before Buying
The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) lists all recalls on baby products for at least the last 20 years. If there is a manufacturer whose product has been recalled, the name will be listed there. Note the manufacturers with recalls and try to avoid those whenever possible to assure you are buying safe baby gear.
Check Specific Products – Also listed at the CPSC are the names and detailed information on specific products recalled. Write down names, serial numbers, product numbers and descriptions of the product when available. This will give you a heads up when choosing used baby gear. If there is a product listed that is for sale in a second hand store, tell the manager of the recall so the product can be pulled off the shelf.
Check for Damage, Wear and Tear
Even that essential baby gear has not been recalled, there could be wear, tear or damage that could cause injury to your infant. Check over the entire piece of baby gear and look for cracks or weakened spots. High chairs should be sturdy and balanced on all four legs. Strollers should roll, open and close easily.
Follow Your Instincts
If any of the baby gear leaves you with a feeling that the product is unsafe, stick with that feeling. New products may not be much safer, but a mother or father will never trust a baby gear product with baby if they feel the product will cause injury.
Used baby gear is a great way to save some money, but parents need to be careful when buying any baby gear from a second hand store. The reduced price is worthless if the infant is injured while using the baby gear.