Making your car safe for your young child means knowing quite a few technical topics, including ISOFIX.
Picking an ISOFIX car seat is definitely a good decision since it’s one of the safest ways of travel with a baby but if you’re a first time parent or have just never owned one before, there are some things you need to know about it beforehand. Another good option would be to pick a rotating car set. While both are safe, make sure you pick what works best for yourself.
What is it and what makes it such a safe pick for any parent out there?
ISOFIX is a standardized car seat fitting system that automatically locks your car seat or seat base onto two ISOFIX fixing points (metal clips) between the seats of your vehicle. This way, you won’t need to use the seat belt anymore.
As for the reason why you should choose it instead of other such systems available on the market, it’s because there is a much smaller chance of installing the car seat incorrectly than when using the seatbelt.
The baby versions need an additional car seat base while the toddler recommended ones can be installed with either ISOFIX or the seat belt.
Finally, for child car seats, to make them as safe and as stable as possible, you can use both the ISOFIX and the seat belt.
Here’s what ISOFIX brings you:
– As mentioned before, there is a really small risk of faulty installation thanks to the indicators,
– There is a permanent connection between the car seat and the car to protect your little one from the force in the case of a sudden brake.
– Thanks to the ISOFIX base, the installation and the removal are quick and convenient. The Click & Go installation feature lets you fit the baby seat onto the base with just a click, removing it just as easy when on the go.
ISOFIX and i-Size
The i-Size is obligatory for ISOFIX car seats since they reduce the risk of an incorrect installation.
However, you should keep in mind that i-Size does not replace the legislation.
So does your car already have ISOFIX?
Most likely! This is because ISOFIX has been made a standard in most new cars starting with the year of 2006.
Furthermore, at least 60 percent of European cars have it so yours most likely does as well.
However, it makes sense that you’d want to know for sure so there is a very easy way to learn by just checking the user manual of your vehicle!
If it does have it, you can also notice the ISOFIX logo on or a label at the very base of your seat.
The system features approved child restraint anchors on the lower rear part for some added safety.
Of course, even without all of that, your child would be safe with just the two anchors but in case an accident takes place, tilting forward and pitch rotation can happen which is why the third anchor point of the ISOFIX system is so important.
This third anchor is able to secure the upper part of the child’s seat backrest (Top Tether) or a Support Leg.
Both of these are anti-rotation systems that will bring any parent a lot of peace of mind.
As mentioned before, in the eventuality of a car accident, the anti-rotation system can do wonders!
Usually, there are two stages:
The speed and the deceleration cause all objects as well as the child’s body to be thrown forward at the same speed that the vehicle was traveling.
When the car suddenly stops, the child seat recoils, this being the second stage. But, if you have ISOFIX, the third anchor point stops the child seat from ever tilting forward or rotating.
Even though all the restraining force is found in the lower anchors, the anti-rotating system is what really keeps the chair in place and prevents your little one from being violently thrown forward.
It is important to understand that while a seatbelt provides some extra safety normally, it is not enough to act as an anti-rotation system.
In other words, using an “ISOFIX” system in combination with a seatbelt is not considered a CRS with ISOFIX anchoring.
In fact, the ISOFIX system particularly avoids employing the seatbelt so that any errors when installing the child seat can be avoided.
Before you purchase a car seat, you should also know some of the most common types of anti-rotation systems:
– Top Tether
This third anchor point is a strap able to secure the upper part of the backrest to the back of the car seat or sometimes, even to the trunk!
It is located on the trunk floor or on the rear side of the car’s bench seat and to find its location, you need to check the car manual or identify the position of the logo.
– Support Leg
The support leg is another type of third anchor point and an equally as efficient alternative to the Top Tether.
This type can be used with child car seats recommended to the 0+ age group so from the very beginning of your child’s life no matter if you have a rear facing or forward facing seat.
As the name also suggests, this is a leg that has to be extended until the point that it rests on the car’s floor.
– Lower Tether
This is yet another system that will make sure to prevent rotation in the case of a car accident.
It’s a strap coming out from the back of the car child seat and needs to be secured to the vehicle’s floor in order to increase safety.
Usually, it also attaches to the front seat guide rail.
Of course, there are some manufacturers that have come up with some other systems which will help in avoiding the recoil as well. For instance, the Pivot Link!
– Pivot Link
In this case, the connectors aren’t fitted to the bottom of the child seat but are, instead, set a certain height so that if a frontal collision happens, the connectors’ rotation can push the child seat down and absorb that energy.
Furthermore, it can be used at the same time as a Support Leg or a Top Tether for some increased safety.
All you need to keep in mind, however, is that it’s been created to only work for built-in forward-facing child seats.
Now that you know all you need to know to make sure your bundle of joy will remain safe while in the car regardless of the situation, here are a few great car seats you can use along with the ISOFIX system as well as a couple of great ISOFIX products in case your vehicle does not already feature it!
For even more top tier options, click here.
Graco 4Ever DLX 4 in 1 Car Seat
The first product featured on our list is a 4 in 1 car seat that is guaranteed to last you for a decade!
This is because it transforms from a read facing harness car seat to a forward harness car seat, to a high back belt positioning booster, to a backless belt positioning booster, allowing your child to continue using it for as they grow up!
More precisely, the weight recommendation is between 4 and 120 pounds depending on the form you’ll be using the chain in out of the 4 options.
It measures 20 x 21.5 x 24 inches
Furthermore, it was made to protect your little one in front, side, read and rollover crashes so you can rest assured that they’ll remain safe no matter the situation.
The simply safe adjust harness system is able to change the height of the harness and the headrest to no less than ten different positions in one single motion in order to ensure that the little one is secured at all times.
But this chair is not only safe but also very comfortable. The six positions recline will keep the growing child comfortable no matter the chair’s position and their age and so will the plush head and body inserts.
The In Right Latch attachment also provides a super quick, one second attachment while also making a click sound so you can be sure it’s been correctly installed every time.
Speaking of installation, there is an integrated belt lock off for some easy car seat belt installation as well.
The cover is removable and machine washable and you can take it off in no more than 60 seconds, without the need of uninstalling the seat every time you need to clean it.
As for the plastic and metal parts, they can also be easily cleaned with just some cool water and soap.
It even comes with rubberized harness storage for some extra accessibility.
Britax Marathon ClickTight Convertible Car Seat, Verve
This car seat from the brand BRITAX is a seat belt installation type car seat and is made primarily from steel and mesh fabric.
It is a rear facing seat and it is also super easy to install due to the patented click right which makes the installation as quick and easy as buckling a seat belt.
You will also never have to worry about rethreading either as it features a 14 position harness as well as a 2 position buckle that can provide your child with some extra space and comfort as they grow up.
There are seven recline positions to provide your little one with even more comfort as well as the best installation angle for the parent.
To be as safe as possible, this car seat also features a layer of side impact protection as well as a strong steel frame and an impact absorbing base!
This car seat measures 23 x 18.5 x 23.5 inches, the shoulder width is 16 inches.
In the rear facing position, it is ideal for children between 5 and 40 pounds and in the forward facing position, it suits kids weighing between 20 and 65 pounds.
Diono Radian 3RXT, 4-in-1 Convertible Car Seat, Rear and Forward Facing, Steel Core
The third option on this list comes from the brand Diono and it features a latch type installation.
The product is made from Polypropylene, Plastic, Alloy Steel and Polystyrene.
It is a convertible seat which means that you can use it for a long time as you young one grows up by simply changing the seat’s orientation.
With that being said, it is first a comfortable and safe seat for newborns which features a travel high wedge so that your baby can lie flat while traveling in the car.
Furthermore, it features an innovative technology that pushes the infant up in order to reduce any head slump all the while aiding to keep their airways open.
As mentioned before, you can transform the seat as your offspring grows up by just removing e wedge and allowing the 2-in-1 infant positioning liner for support.
Not only that but this convertible car seat is made in such a way that you will be able to keep your child in the read facing position for longer, up to 50 lbs or 22. 7 kg (around the age of 4.)
This car seat can be used for up to 10 years due to the fact that it features different travel safety features depending on your child’s age and weight.
This means that you will be able to use it from birth to 120 lbs!
It also features a reinforced steel core, mechanically engineered from automotive grade high density plastic and steel, providing your little one with the utmost safety!
Finally, it is built with the radian slim fit convertible design to fit three seats across in most cars if you have multiples or kids close in age, without compromising the children’s or any other passengers’ safety in the slightest.
Their comfort is not compromised either which is why this is such a great choice, scoring high all across the board.
Universal Car Seat ISOFIX Latch Interface Bracket Mounting for Baby Safety Chair
The Universal Car Seat ISOFIX Latch Interface Bracket Mounting for Baby Safety Chair is made out of steel and works great in a bus as well as in a car!
In fact, it is suitable for pretty much any vehicle, including SUVs.
It features a 4mm thick steel pad for some extra safety and durability.
It comes with 1Pair ISOFIX Guide Groove as well as an installation video so you can be sure that you’re doing everything right.
This item is perfect for you if your car does not have it already, allowing you to easily improve the safety of your child while they’re in their car seat.
Universal Child Seat Restraint Anchor Mounting Kit for ISOFIX Belt Connector
The final product on this list is a high quality ISOFIX belt connector latch and the manufacturer even offers buyers a full refund in case they identify any quality issues.
By ordering this item, you will receive an ISOFIX bracket and the ISOFIX guide slot as well.
Furthermore, you are also free to contact the seller in case you need some installation instructions or even videos to guide you towards a non-faulty installation.
But before that, you should know the installation car requirements, which are as follows:
– If your car does not already feature the ISOFIX interface
– If the car’s rear backrest can be put in the forward position
– If there is a gap between the car’s back and the seat cushion and that space is not closed.
Finally, if even after checking these details, you are still unsure whether or not you need this product, you can totally check with the seller to find out whether or not it really fits your car or not.