Parents that are looking for an amazing car seat that grows with their child the RECARO ProSPORT Combination Harness to Booster Car Seat is one of the best choices around. RECARO made a name for themselves by designing racing seats, as well as seats for luxury cars. While they are not the most well known [...]
Choosing the Best Car Booster Seat – A Buyer’s Guide
Booster seats are car seats that are designed for older children to use to help keep them safe in cars. Booster seats are used to ensure that children are properly secured in a car after they have outgrown a convertible car seat, but before they are big enough to sit properly in a regular seat. No matter what type of booster seat you purchase, they are all designed to keep children safely secured in the car in the event of a collision.
Unlike infant car seats and convertible car seats, there are three different types of booster seats. The type of booster seat that should be purchased is going to depend on the age, weight, and height of the child using the seat. However, personal preference is also going to play a role in choosing the right booster seat for a child. The three types of booster seats are a convertible booster, high back booster, and a backless booster. The convertible booster seat is designed for children that have not yet reached the weight required for a belt positioning booster seat because it uses a five-point harness. The high back and backless booster seats both use belt-positioning top secure the child in place, but the high back booster provides better back support as long as it grows with the child.
Like all other products, every booster seat should come with some features. Knowing what those must have features are before going out and purchasing a booster seat can help parents save parents time and money because they will know exactly what they are looking for.
Must Have Features:
- Easy installation. Finding a booster seat that is easy to install ensures that parents will have an easier time installing the car seat. It also increases the chances of the parents installing it correctly the first time they use it. Currently more than 80% of car seats that are installed are not done correctly, so having one that is easy to install helps change those numbers and protects the child in the event of a collision.
- LATCH System. Not all booster seats are going to come equipped with a LATCH system, but if parents can find one that is a huge bonus. The LATCH system makes installing the booster easier than ever, but also helps hold the seat securely in place even when a child isn’t in it. Even if the seat doesn’t have a LATCH system parents should find one with a lower anchor so the seat can be held securely in place at all times.
- Convertible booster seat. Even though many booster seats state that the minimum weight is 30 pounds children should not be placed in a belt-positioning booster until they are at least 40 pounds. A convertible booster seat comes equipped with a five-point harness that can be used until a child is ready to move into a belt positioning booster, but even better it changes over so parents don’t have to buy a new one.
- Easy to adjust latches and buckles. This is only important to look at in booster seats that feature the five-point harness system. You want to find something that adjusts from the front rather than the back because it is easier to do. With belt positioning boosters, parents want to find one that allows children to buckle themselves in when the timing is right.
- Easy to clean. Booster seats are going to get messy so having one that is easy to clean is a huge plus. Most come with machine washable covers, while others require spot cleaning. Each one is fine, but parents still want to be able to take off the cover to easily clean the entire seat.
While knowing the specific features to look for is helpful when purchasing a booster seat, knowing about the most popular brands available is too. Knowing about the most popular brands helps parents discover what features are in demand, but can also help narrow down a difficult decision. In most cases, the popular brands on the market have the basic features that are needed in a booster seat, but also have a few extras that make the booster seat even more in demand. The most popular brands are often made by companies that parents know and trust, and they are not lacking any of the simple things that make the booster seat a pleasure to have.
- Britax – One of the most popular brands of car seats, which also includes booster seats, is Britax. Britax booster seats are one of the safest ones one the market, but they also happen to be one of the pricier ones. Britax seats all come with Side Impact Protection, but the booster seats also come with Secure Guard, which prevents children from slipping out underneath the seat belt in a crash or sudden stop. The Britax Frontier 85 Combination also comes with a tether that allows parents to secure the booster seat in place.
- Evenflo – Evenflo is another trusted name in children’s products because their safety is second to none. The belt positioning booster seats often come with a high back, but many of them can easily be converted into a backless booster seat. One of the nice features with the Evenflo booster seats is the pivoting armrests that allow buckling children into the seat easier than most. The Evenflo Big Kid DLX also comes with dual activity lights that do not interfere with the driver’s vision and allows kids to play quietly during the evening hours.