Can A High Chair Tip Over?

baby leaning in a high chair

A high chair is a standard piece of kit for many parents, but before you buy one you need to know whether they can tip over and how to use them safely. Let’s have a look at how to use high chairs safely to avoid accidents for your family.

Can a high chair tip over?

Technically yes, a high chair can tip over like any other piece of furniture in your home. That being said, most reputable high chairs are designed with safety in mind and have features to make sure they are stable and safe.

However, it is worth bearing in mind that all children are different. Some children will sit calmly in their chair at each mealtime and others will wiggle around and try to climb out. It is important to pay attention to your child and their surroundings as well as their behaviours.

What can cause a high chair to tip over?

A high chair could tip over for these reasons:

  • It is set up on uneven ground.
  • It is too close to a kitchen counter or table that your child can push off and tip the chair over.
  • It is not set up correctly and clicked into place as laid out in the instructions.
  • You child is not strapped in and is able to rock the chair or slide around while they are in it
  • Your child climbs on or plays with the high chair, outside of mealtimes, and tips it over.
  • Your child is over the weight limit for the high chair and is able to rock it over.

How are high chairs designed to stop them tipping over?

High chairs are designed with several features to stop them from tipping over such as adjustable legs to ensure the chair is balanced and even. The legs of high chairs are angled and they are typically weighted to lower the centre of gravity and stop it tipping over when your child is seated in it.

Most high chairs also have straps or harnesses to keep your little one stable and secure while they eat. Furthermore, collapsible high chairs have locks to click them into place once you set them up. All of these features help to stop high chairs from tipping over. It is important to use all of your high chair’s safety features as the manufacturer recommends.

How do you stop a high chair from crashing?

Here is a checklist to stop your high chair from crashing:

  • Set up your high chair according to the manufacturer’s instructions
  • Make sure your chair is locked into place if it is collapsible
  • Set your high chair up away from counters or other reachable surfaces
  • Check the high chair is set up on even ground and/or that the legs are adjusted to balance it out
  • Ensure your child is strapped into the high chair properly
  • Never leave your child unattended while they are in their high chair
  • Teach your child not to climb on the high chair like a ladder to avoid any falls or crashes. Tidy it away or move it to one side outside of mealtimes to minimise the chance that your child will play with or on it.

Can a baby fall off a high chair?

Yes, babies can fall off their high chair and accidents do happen. This usually happens because babies or toddlers are climbing on their chair like a ladder and fall, or when they are not strapped in properly to eat. Make sure you use the harness or straps on the highchair when you put your baby in to eat and supervise them whenever they are in the chair.

What is the weight limit of a high chair?

Each high chair is a little bit different. However a basic rule of thumb is that they are designed for children aged from 5 months up to 3 years old. It is imperative that you check your high chair’s weight limit and guidelines before you start using it. Reference these guidelines again as your child grows to be sure they remain safe in their high chair.

Here’s an idea of the weight limit for some popular high chair brands that acts as a guide:


Most of their high chairs have a weight limit of 40 pounds but each design is slightly different.


The classic Tripp Trapp high chair from Stokke is suitable for any weight with the right attachment. There is a newborn bassinet, a high chair feature and it becomes a regular seat once your child is ready. Just check the instructions with care for the limits for each attachment.


Most Cosco high chairs have a weight limit of 50 pounds.

Again, check each individual chair for specific information. You’ll also gauge your own child’s movement and know when they are ready to move out of a high chair and into a booster seat. Some children are happy in a high chair for a long time while others will outgrow them sooner.

Depending on the design of your high chair, you will find that there are many ways to extend its use such as turning into a junior seat once your child has outgrown the first stage. Make sure you read all of this information with care since there are different weight limits for each feature.

Is it safe to use an old high chair?

You could use a second hand high chair as long as you read the manufacturer’s instructions and the chair is in good repair. Check the high chair is in good condition and works properly before you put your child in it.

Does a high chair need a harness?

Children should always be strapped into a high chair. This way they cannot climb out or rock the chair while they are sitting in it. It also stops any babies from sliding down in their high chair.

can a high chair tip over

How do I stop my baby from sliding in the high chair?

Always use the harness strap system to secure your baby in their high chair. This will prevent them slipping down or sliding out. Check the tray is attached properly or that they are well placed to reach what they need. This helps your baby to get everything they need without leaning too much and sliding at all.

Most high chairs are designed to keep your baby safe as long as you follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Use the harness, set it up properly and supervise your child while they use it and when they are around the high chair. Choose a reputable brand and once your high chair is set up and your child is all set, it is time to enjoy mealtimes together. Eating together is a great way to bond and spend time as a family, so have fun and stay safe!