Don’t take chances with car seat after accident

Dear Heloise: Please let readers know that when a vehicle is in an accident and children with car seats are involved, the car seats must be replaced. Most insurance companies will replace the car seat. The car seats can be easily compromised (belts stretched, etc.). — Ruth in New Jersey

You are right, Ruth! The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends that car seats be replaced when involved in a moderate to severe crash, but not necessarily after a minor crash. All crashes are different, and whether the child was in the seat at the time of the crash matters, too. If a child was in the seat at the time of the crash, be sure to replace it. Car seats are guaranteed to perform at their peak during only one crash. Even with no visible damage, a car seat may not hold up to a second crash.

Car-seat manufacturers have their own

recommendations, depending on the company, so check with yours as well. When in doubt, I would replace the car seat no matter what, and most insurance companies should cover the replacement cost. — Heloise

NIGHT LIGHT

Dear Heloise: As my wife and I grow older, we are becoming more and more aware of the dangers of falling. Some of our friends have already experienced falling in their homes at night.

We suggest investing in some small, motion-activated night lights, available at a hardware store, that come in   battery-operated or plug-in varieties. We have mounted the lights around our house where we would likely be walking at night. They go on in succession as we proceed from one room to the next. We also have one in our overnight kit for those unfamiliar motel rooms and late-night bathroom visits. — J.R.F., via email

SAVE MONEY

Dear Heloise: My hint is for people who wear prescription eyeglasses. You can save a lot of money by reusing the frames and replacing just the lenses. Some well-made frames will last 10 years or longer. — Patricia R., Bellaire, Texas

This can be a money-saving hint if the frames are in good condition. But be sure to check with the eyeglass provider, because some lenses cannot be replaced in frames without damaging the frames. — Heloise

NO CREASES

Dear Heloise: Occasionally I will wear slacks for just a few hours while out to dinner, a short business meeting or an appointment. When I get home, I hang the slacks from the cuff using a pants hanger so that any creases come out from that day of wear. This saves a trip to the dry cleaner. — C.W. in New York

CALENDAR STORAGE

Dear Heloise: At the end of each year, I remove the binding from the family calendar, three-hole punch it at the top and put it in a photo binder with the other calendars from the past. This makes it easy to review prior years, and saves space stacking old calendars. — Jim M., via email

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Hints from Heloise run occasionally in Lifestyles. Readers may send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000, fax it to 210-HELOISE, or email: Heloise@Heloise.com. Letters won’t be answered personally.

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