Kids make messes everywhere, and the car seat is no exception. That mess can go from gross to dangerous if a bit of food or a piece of a toy gets stuck in the seat's release lever — a semi-secret part of the seat that needs to work smoothly to keep the straps snug.
Photo by Quinn Dombrowski.
This lever is often hidden under a flap between the kid's legs — and if you weren't the one who installed or who typically uses the car seat, you might not even know it is there. You push on this lever to loosen the seatbelt, so if something gets stuck in this lever, it can make the seatbelts seem to be permanently loose.
— Transport Canada (@Transport_gc) February 13, 2017
Transport Canada recently investigated some car seats with loose straps. A parent had asked for the investigation thinking the seats were defective, but there turned out to be food debris stuck in a hard-to-see spot in the lever. Read more at the link below, including videos from Graco (the maker of the seats in question) describing how to thoroughly clean the seat.
Alberta Mum's Loose Car Seat Straps Caused By Food Debris: Transport Canada [Global News Canada]