Many people believe that if their vehicle is in an accident, but the child car seat is undamaged, they are still good. However, that is not the case. According to the NHTSA, child safety seats must be replaced following a moderate or severe crash in order to ensure a continued high level of crash protection for child passengers.
However, for any child car seat that has endured a minor crash, they may be replaced later if the minor crash did not damage the child safety seat, airbags were not deployed, and there were no injuries to the occupants within the vehicle.
Many people want to re-use child safety seats after an accident to save some money, but this could put you at risk for being “penny wise and pound foolish”. Most insurance companies will reimburse for carseats involved in a crash, and they are required by law to do so in some states.
If you have any questions about your particular child safety seat(s), contact the child seat manufacturer for further details.