Booster seats are important to ensure the safety of your child while you are traveling on the road. However, using one even before your child is ready for it will compromise the kid’s safety too. It is important to note that as you change your child’s seat to the next level; you are reducing one’s protection too. Hence, keeping your precious little one to her seat level as long in each stage as needed will give her the protection that she needs.
So, how do you know that your child needs to step up to the next level in her booster seat? You simply check if she has outgrown the old one. The child’s height and weight must not exceed the limit provided for the seat’s forward-facing harnesses. This is ideally within the range of 40 lbs. to 65 lbs. To know the specific limit of the forwarding car seat’s manual. Keeping your kid in a harnessed seat as long as needed will also keep the child safety during the ride.
When can the child use the adult safety belts?
You have to wait for the child to be 4’9” (normally when one reaches 8-12 years old) before one can use adult safety belts. The latter is only intended for a 165 lbs. individual. Hence, the belt gets loose and poor fitting when used by a small child and this is not safe at all. Your child must never skip a step even when she has outgrown the height limitations of the internal harness in a forward-facing child safety seat. Even if she is already 35″ tall but still within the range of 40-80 lbs. in 4-8 years old, she can’t skip a step either. You would know that your kid is not yet ready to use an adult safety belt when she can’t sit with her back on your vehicle’s seat without bending her knees at the edge of the seat and slouches as she does so. Overall, any child who still won’t fit well on a vehicle belt system is not yet qualified to use an adult safety belt and must remain on one’s booster seat.
Before installing the seat
When planning to install a booster seat for your child, see to it that you fill out the registration card and send it back to the manufacturer so you will be notified in case of a possible recall. Read the owner manual of the booster seat by heart. Instructions must be followed well to so that the seat will be properly installed. When using a belt-positioning booster, it must be employed using a shoulder or lap belt. This offers protection to your kid’s upper body. For cars with lap belts only, a belt retrofit has to be completed. If a head restraint is present, you can install a backless belt positioning booster. Without such, a high back booster can be used instead.
So, if you really love your child and wanted to ensure her safety, always make sure that she uses the right car seat. The budget will never be an issue since there are affordable best booster car seats you can find these days.