1. Always have safety standards top of mind
Cot Safety Standards are always evolving. When parents are looking to purchase a cot they should always ensure that their purchase meets the current safety standards and be mindful that older cots may not pass current and updated standards.
This is especially important if you are deciding between purchasing a new cot or buying second hand.
2. Make sure you get warranty
Warranty is always important when buying any product, and shouldn’t be forgotten when purchasing nursery furniture. When buying a new cot, parents are guaranteed 5 years’ warranty.
Parents considering purchasing second-hand should however be conscious that they are not guaranteed the same length warranty or any warranty at all.
3. Don't be afraid to ask questions
Reputable nursery retailers will ensure that you are equipped with the correct information as you prepare to purchase a cot.
If you have questions about what product will best suit your lifestyle, need assurance of safety or just want to speak to an expert to get their opinion, don’t be afraid to do so.
Nursery retailers will always consider both your needs and Australian Safety Standards, making the process easier and less stressful for you.
4. Inspecting the cot in person is preferable
Purchasing your cot from a reputable retailer also gives you choice from a wide range of brands and styles, as well as products complying with the tough safety standards.
Parents should be alert if not buying from a retailer, as cheaper, non-compliant cots will occasionally surface on the online market. Without a proper understanding of the safety features and look-and-feel of a product online, parents can put both themselves and child at risk.
5. Fresh from the packaging VS wear and tear
Newly purchased flat-packs may not be everyone’s friend, but they can be a better option than not having the instructions or finding missing or modified parts when you pick up a second hand cot.
Purchasing from a retailer means that you need not to be concerned about wear and tear, such as fractures or weaknesses of the timber that can lead the product to fail, and you can also take advantage of getting a professional to assemble the cot.
This will save time, stress and potentially a lot of frustration.
6. Avoid drop-side cots
Most cribs should be safe under normal conditions. But poorly designed cribs with drop sides have been known to cause accidental strangulation deaths.
In 2011, the United States banned the sale of drop-side cribs amid safety concerns, as babies could get trapped – sometimes fatally – in the gaps created if the drop sides came loose.
7. Beware the slats
It’s important to pay attention to the slatted bed base that comes with the cot. Experts recommend cribs with slats no bigger than 4.5 cm to 6 cm to prevent babies from slipping through.
Choose a firm mattress to go on top of the slats as they reduce the danger of suffocation. They should lie flush against the edges of the cot so that your baby does not get trapped in a gap.
8. Consider a grow-with-you cot
If you plan to use the crib for multiple children, a well-made traditional crib that meets modern safety standards could be a great option.
But convertible cribs (ones that grow with your child as they get older) also offer lots of bang for your buck, growing with baby to transform into toddler beds, daybeds, or even a full bed frame with just a few small adjustments.
(Text: Bauersyndication.com.au / Additional reporting: Natalya Molok)