Before Boosters


Before Booster Seat Use

Booster seats are designd for big kids, that is kids who've since out grown there harnessed car seat by height or weight. There's no reason why you cannot keep your 5 year old in a harnessed seat, as long as they fit (based on the specified weight, height or height markers).

It is recommend to use a booster seat ONLY once your child has out grown their convertible child restraint. The age that a child out grows their car seat will differ from child to child and is not age dependent, go by the seat weight limit, or height of your child that is, if the child's eye/ears are level with the top/sides of the seat they need to move onto a bigger seat. It's important to note here though, that not all car seats are created equally, if you suspect your child may be too big for their seat, trial other seats first, they may still in fact have another 12-24 months in the harness of another seat, check the height of the top slots, and the weight limit. Some seats only harness to 18kg, some on the market can go to 36kg. Some have top slots around 35cm high, others around 50cm high.

A booster seat has not internal harness. The child is secured using a full lap & sash seat belt. The child needs to be able to sit correctly in the booster seat so that the seat belt can rest correctly over their body. That is, low down over the upper thigh, not their lower tummy, and across their upper chest, across the shoulder, away from their neck.

To sit correctly the child must be able to sit with their back against their seat, their legs bent over the edge, and the belt needs to remain over the front of their body at all times, they must not sit the shoulder portion behind them, or under their arm.

If your booster seat has arm rests the lap belt must pass under these on both sides and the shoulder portion near the buckle should also pass under the arm rest, never above. Doing so will cause the belt to fit poorly.

It is important that you do not move your child to a booster seat too soon. Children who use a booster seat before they are big enough physically, and mature enough are at risk of submarining. This is when the child either comes up against the lap portion of the belt, or slides out underneath it.

It is recommend to use a booster seat ONLY once your child has out grown their convertible child restraint. The age that a child out grows their car seat will differ from child to child and is not age dependent, go by the seat weight limit, or height of your child that is, if the child's eye/ears are level with the top/sides of the seat they need to move onto a bigger seat.

Important video

Please watch the video below, before you buy your child a booster seat, it may just save his/her life.

 

 

Updated August 2013