How to choose compact convertible car seat?
If one thing is needed when you expect a baby or when you are the parent of a child, it’s a car seat. But which car seat should I choose? Do you know all the criteria to choose the most effective and comfortable model for your child, and all this for the best price? When it comes to road safety, you can never be too informative, so this is everything you need to know before buying a car seat.
Baby car seats: what does the law say?
Because car seats are designed for adults, they are not completely suitable for child safety. Therefore, the law requires the provision of the necessary means to protect children traveling by car properly. Before reaching a height of 1.35m, a child was not tall enough to safely use a seat belt. And before 10 years, his pelvis was not mature enough to withstand the shock that a waist contact could cause.
Children under 10 years of age must sit in the back. With some exceptions (missing or unusable rear seats, or installing in rear seats with disabled airbags).
Depending on your child’s weight, different types of chairs can be used:
- 10 kg in advance: carry bed or rear hull
- from 9 to 18 kg: car seat or back side
- from 15 kg: strengthened
However, it is not necessary to buy a new model every time your child grows up. Some car seats are upgradable and therefore can accommodate your toddler over the years.
Which car is the size of my child?
Every child is different and grows at their own pace, so age is not a reliable indicator of whether car seats are right for them. There are 5 groups of car seats, classified from 0 to 3:
- Group 0: from birth, for infants weighing less than 10 kg and up to 9 months
- Group 0+: always from birth, but can accommodate a baby weighing 13 kg and up to 15 months
- 1 year old: for children weighing 9 kg to 18 kg
- Group 2 years old : for children weighing from 15 kg to 25 kg
- Group 3: for children from 25 to 36 kg
To avoid having to invest in a new seat as soon as the child grows up, there are expandable car seats: they combine the characteristics of some groups and adapt to the child’s growth. Therefore, a car seat can belong to 1/2/3 group and accompany the child for nearly 10 years (of course they have never been injured).
The car seat is expandable
If adjusting the size of your child’s car seat is clearly necessary for its safety, then it’s not the only factor to consider when choosing: ensuring the comfort level your child has. will be entitled to a reservation on their seats.
Indeed, long car trips can quickly become very difficult to live (for babies and thus for you) when you are uncomfortable. Liking the latter are memory foam seats, wide and padded shoulder straps as well as well-wrapped headrests (obviously considering this depending on the type of car seat). Also make sure your child has enough leg room.
Security factor not to be missed
Before choosing a car seat, you must first know the safety standards in effect. Let’s start with the standard R129 (aka i-Size): the most recent car seat, launched in 2013. It coexists with the standard R44 / 04, which dates back to 1982, is still valid. . Therefore, your vehicle seats must comply with R44 / 04 or R129 regulations.
What are the special features of the i-Size standard?
Mandatory side and frontal impact checks on neck and head
reinstall or go back for at least 15 months
presence of isofix system
Classification of seats according to child’s size, not by weight (we will no longer rely on groups to select seats in the car)
But the best car seats are nothing without fastening! Make sure your car seat is securely tied before putting your child there. For this, there are several systems: isofix attachments, struts, top fastening systems …
So, many types of attachments vary by car seat but also by car. : it’s really important to check before buying any of your cars that will be compatible with the vehicle seat attachment system you have chosen, risking not being able to use it.
Are chairs firmly attached? Now check to see if your child is too young! Whether you prefer a car seat with a harness or a shield, carefully remove your child’s jacket before installation so you can better check that the protectors are located and tightened correctly.
What price for a good car seat?
If you will find a chair without backrest (group 3) from around twenty euros, count from 80 to 500 euros for an expandable and quality car seat. Yes, there can be a big difference in price depending on the seat, so take the time to compare all the factors before you choose!
However, even if the purchase of a new car seat greatly affects the parents’ budget, it’s an absolute must avoid: buying used car seats! You will never be able to know for sure what happened to the chair before you bought it … It most likely has an accident, even small, will damage it (in an invisible way often) and will compromise its security. Also, do not forget any germs you may come into contact with your baby.
In addition, by purchasing new car seats, you will benefit from a one-to-two-year manufacturer’s warranty depending on the brand. Some are even guaranteed for life!
This is the case of the Bebé Confort Rodifix Airprotect car seat, for children from 15 to 36 kg (i.e. group of 2/3), will be replaced free of charge in the event of an accident. This model has been awarded 4 stars by independent European safety testing organizations.
How to install your car seat?
There are two installation methods for car seats: using seat belts or using isofix fastening systems, for vehicles with it.
The first step is to read and understand the manual, then trust it carefully when installing car seats.
Fit seat belts
Car seats have indicators for where the seat belts are located: they are green for the rear seat and red for the rear seat. Pass the belt well at every place provided and do not attempt to rewind the belt in an additional way: the guidelines have been studied for optimal safety, deviating from it can be dangerous.
Please note: if you place the rear car seat in the front seat, you must turn off the airbag first.
Install with isofix
The installation is relatively simple with isofix System. They are designed to facilitate the installation of car seats. Equip two metal clips to secure to two metal hooks between the seat and backrest of the compatible vehicle.
Therefore, choosing best convertible car seat for small cars for each family needs you to consider carefully, to make sure your baby is always comfortable on his journey.