Give us a little more information and we'll give you a lot more relevant content
Your child's birthday or due date
Girl Boy Not Sure
Add A Child
Remove A Child
I don't have kids
Thanks For Subscribing!
Oops! Something went wrong. Please contact

8 Life-Saving Car Seat Alarms That Remind Parents There’s a Baby in the Back Seat

37 kids die each year after being left in a hot car.

Every year, an average of 37 children die trapped in hot cars, seemingly forgotten by a distracted parent. In an effort to prevent such tragedies, U.S. Congressman Tim Ryan from Ohio introduced the HOT CARS (Helping Overcome Trauma for Children Alone in Rear Seats) Act of 2017. The bill would have required all vehicles to be equipped with an alarm system that notifies the driver if a baby or toddler remains in a car seat when the car is turned off. Unfortunately, but not unsurprisingly, it did not pass. As Ryan, himself a father of three, points out: not only does the technology already exist to prevent these senseless deaths, but it’s already built into cars ⏤ for things like open doors and unfastened seat belts. While it seems that we won’t have legislation to mandate these alarms any time soon, it’s not difficult to take matters into your own hands.

READ MORE: The Fatherly Guide to Car Seats

Just because the technology hasn’t been required, doesn’t mean it’s not available to parents. A number of startups have taken it upon themselves to develop stand-alone car seat alarms to alert harried parents that they just ran into the dry cleaner without their kid. Most either fit under the car-seat cushion and detect weight ⏤ similar to a motion monitor under a crib ⏤ or clip onto the shoulder harness. Almost all car seat alarms sync with either a smartphone or keychain fob and sound an alarm or send an alert message when the driver walks too far away from the vehicle without the baby. In some cases, the car seat alarm will also start calling emergency contacts if there’s no reply. They run between $50 and $100. Here are eight car-seat alarms that are currently on the market or soon to hit it.

Sponsored by Chrysler Pacifica
The Pacifica Helps Every Parent Win

This is not your father’s minivan. With available Stow ‘n Go® Seating, hands-free sliding doors and 360° Surround View Camera, it’s easy to see how parenting wins with the Pacifica.

ChildMinder SoftClip

ChildMinder SoftClip -- car seat alarms
Baby Alert International’s ChildMinder SoftClip is a digital shoulder harness clip that replaces the one that comes with the car seat. It syncs to either a smartphone app or a key fob and sounds an alarm eight seconds after you walk more than 15 feet from the car/kid. It’s spill-proof, crash-tested, and is reportedly easy to remove with one hand in case of an accident.

Buy Now $85


Sense A Life

Sense A Life -- car seat alarms
Only available for pre-order, Sense A Life is a wireless car seat alarm that reminds parents four different times that there’s a kid sitting in the back. First, as soon as they open the car door, a loud voice over the built-in speaker says: “Occupant detected in car seat. Please remove child from the seat.” Second, a tri-color LED flashes to attract their attention. Third, it sends a mobile alert to their smartphone if they walk away. And if all of that fails, it sends an automatic alert to a pre-programmed emergency contact with your GPS location. A weight-based sensor, Sense A Life is a little different technologically from others in that it uses pressure and optical sensors to know both when the car seat’s occupied and the driver door opens. It can easily be swapped between vehicles, and the batteries reportedly last three months between charges.

Buy Now $99

Fatherly IQ
  1. Do you belong to any travel advantage or rewards programs?
Thanks for the feedback!
Oops! Something went wrong. Please contact

RELATED: Common Car Seat Mistakes (And How to Avoid Them)

Kars 4 Kids Safety App

Kars-4-Kids-App -- car seat alarms
Created by that charity with the catchy jingle aimed at convincing you to donate your car, this free safety app doesn’t come with an accompanying device. In fact, you don’t even need a kid or car seat for it to work. It requires your car have Bluetooth and sounds a customizable “don’t-forget-your-kid” alarm every time the engine goes off and the phone disconnects from the car. Simple as that. It easily turns off when you’re not driving your baby, too ⏤ or you can leave it on so you don’t forget the groceries in the back seat.

Buy Now $Free

Evenflo Advanced Embrace DLX Infant Car Seat with SensorSafe

Evenflo Advanced Embrace DLX Infant Car Seat with SensorSafe -- car seat alarms
One of the few actual car seats on the market with a built-in sensor, Evenflo’s Embrace is designed for babies up to 12 months (35 lbs.) and uses slightly different technology than the other devices. While the shoulder harness clip is similar to the ChildMinder, the Evenflo comes with a wireless receiver that plugs into the car’s on-board diagnostic port ⏤ generally where a mechanic would go to see why the check engine light is on. By plugging in here, the SensorSafe knows for sure when the engine has been cut, at which point a “series of tones will chime to remind you that your child is buckled in their car seat.” So instead of trying to catch you as you walk away, it’s similar to when you leave the headlights on. Plus, remember, it’s also a full car seat.

Buy Now $93

Sunshine Baby iRemind Car Seat Alarm

Sunshine Baby iRemind Car Seat Alarm -- car seat alarms
The Sunshine Baby iRemind is a soft, sensing pad that looks like a bear and fits under the padded car-seat cushion. The car seat alarm stands somewhat apart in that it reportedly can detect a mere pound of weight, while the others require four to five pounds to register. It beeps immediately upon putting the baby in so that you know it’s activated, and it syncs to either a smartphone app or key fob. Both will emit an audible alarm if you walk more than 15 feet away from the vehicle.

Buy Now $99

2018 GMC Acadia

2017 GMC Acadia -- car seat alarms
The 2017 GMC Acadia mid-size SUV may have been the only car on the road with built-in Rear Seat Reminder technology, an integrated alert system similar to a headlight or trunk open alarm — the same type of technology the Hot Cars Act of 2017 tried to legislate all automakers include in their vehicles. But now the feature is standard in all 2018 Acadias, Terrains, Yukons, Canyons, and Sierras. While it doesn’t detect a rear-seat passenger or presence of a car seat, it can tell if the rear door has been opened and closed up to ten minutes before the vehicle is started (or while the vehicle is running). If so, consider it activated. And when the ignition is cut, audible chimes go off a and a visual message pops up on dashboard that reads “Rear Seat Reminder, Look in Rear Seat.” GMC plans to include it in other four-door models, as well as provide a disabling feature if you don’t have a baby.

Buy Now $32,600

Driver’s Little Helper

Driver's Little Helper -- car seat alarms
The nice thing about the Driver’s Little Helper monitor is that if you don’t answer the alert asking why you left your kid in the car, it’s going to start scrolling through your contact list. So don’t be surprised if Grandma calls. DLH is another car seat alarm weight sensor that fits under the car-seat pad while a battery pack secures to the back. It detects if the baby’s still seated after the car is turned off, as well as if a child wiggles free from the seat. And it sends both text or email messages to a smartphone app, but there are no audible alarms. It also has a built-in thermometer so you can see what the temp in the back seat ⏤ while the A/C vent blows icy cold air on your face up front.

Buy Now $80

Elpho eClip

Elepho eClip -- car seat alarms
While not slated to hit stores until December (you can pre-order now, though), Elpho’s eClip ⏤ much as might infer from the name ⏤ clips on to the car seat’s shoulder strap. Turn it on and it syncs via Bluetooth to either your smartphone or an accompanying key fob. Get out of the car and walk more than 15 feet away without your child and an alarm goes off. Keep walking because somehow you don’t hear it, and the eClip will start texting a spouse, relative, or friend. It also has a built-in thermometer and will alert the driver if temps in the back seat get either too hot or too cold.

Buy Now $67