Summer is now in full force and with our temps already hitting 120 degrees (seriously?!) we are all experiencing first hand how brutal the heat can be on our kids. If you ask any mom she will say that one of the worst parts of the AZ summer is getting kids in and out of the hot car. With interior temps of cars sometimes reaching 175 degrees, it is hard to not be concerned with placing your child in a hot car seat and potentially risking burns from the metal components.
Since I first started leaving my daughter’s car seat in the car I immediately started using a car seat cooler. At the time I could not find a retail option, so I set out to create my own. Since then I have been sharing my crazy cheap, super easy car seat cooler design with every mom possible. I truly feel as though it not only increases comfort for my girls, but can also potentially save kids from over heating and possible burns.
I will start out by saying that this car seat cooler is not necessarily pretty, but it is incredibly easy to make, and super inexpensive! I found that Walmart had the best prices on the items needed (shown below), but they are available on Amazon and at Target as well.
Items You Will Need to Make Your Crazy Cheap Car Seat Cooler:
*The ice packs shown above are bulky, but they do stay cold the longest. If you find that they are too heavy for your liking Target has the Igloo brand ice packs for $1.99 (2 pack). They are significantly less bulky, fit in the pockets just as well, but are thinner, so they may not stay cold for quite as long.
Step 1: Cut along the halfway mark of the shoe organizer…just after the third row of pockets.
Step 2: To prevent fraying/unraveling of the stitching I recommend using Fray Check (can be found at Walmart, Joanns, Hobby Lobby, etc..), or glue, and dabbing it on the ends of the newly cut stitching.
Step 3: Tie ribbon (measure to the height of the top of your car seat) to two outer top holes and insert ice packs into the middle two pockets of each row. The ribbon is optional and the car seat cooler normally stays put without it. I like to have the ribbon in place to throw over the top of the headrest with my toddler’s car seat, or top of my baby’s car seat handle, just in case it ever decides to try and slip down.
Step 4: You have now have a car seat cooler! Seriously…it is that simple! You also have the option to create a second one with the bottom half of the remaining shoe organizer. If you would like the ribbon you can simply sew the ribbon onto the top edge of the bottom half of the shoe organizer, or you can easily go without it. All you need to do is buy 6 more ice packs!
Now just roll your car seat cooler up and throw it in the freezer! For transport I picked up a cooler bag at Trader Joe’s. It keeps the ice packs cool in between uses and makes it easy to carry it to and from the car. Leaving the empty cooler bag next to my diaper bag also serves as my reminder to not leave the house without my car seat coolers.
The car seat coolers, with the weight centered in the middle via the ice packs, fit snuggly into both toddler and baby car seats. Just keep the car seat cooler in your cooler bag until you arrive at your destination, remove your child from their car seat, place the car seat cooler in their seat, and go! When you arrive back at your car remove the car seat cooler from your child’s perfectly chilled car seat and place it back in your cooler bag to stay cool until your next destination.
Now, if you just can’t get yourself to make your own car seat cooler be sure to check out the amazing car seat cooler by Cooltech at www.coolcarats.com.