This post about car seat safety is brought to you by Britax. I received a product for review and all opinions are 100% my own.
I read a news story last week, it wasn’t really “new” but it was news to me! I try to stay current with car seat safety. We always have our car seats checked and installed at the police car seat installation center nearby (I’ve made these common car seat mistakes and am happy to have the officer correct it!).
So I was surprised, reading the April 2013 Consumer Reports article, to find the LATCH system is often incorrectly utilized!
According to Consumer Reports: “the LATCH anchors are currently designed for a maximum combined weight of the child and child seat of 65 lbs. Depending on what manufacturers estimate to be the weight of the average child seat, many limit LATCH use to between 40 and 48 lbs. Once children exceed this weight, the seat must be installed using the vehicle seat belt, not LATCH.” (Source: http://bit.ly/174wGKM)
The problem? Car seat manufacturers specify child weight limits on their seats, some up to 70 pounds. However, the LATCH system weight limit of 65 pounds includes BOTH the child and the car seat! Parents may be forgetting to count the weight of the car seat and therefore surpassing the safe weight limit of the LATCH system, even though within the limit for the car seat itself!
September (tomorrow!) is Baby Safety Month. So… find out the weight of your car seat and ADD the weight of your child. If you’re over 65 pounds total? Time to use the seat belt to install the car seat.
I immediately checked our Britax Marathon 70 G3 car seat, and was happy to note Britax posts the weight of their car seats in the product specs online. The Marathon 70 G3 is 19.5 pounds. So I have until my baby reaches 46.5 pounds until I need to change my installation. (Which, at the rate he’s eating, might be next week!).
Britax has “Safety you can see” – all their safety features are external / visible, so you see how the seat is protecting your child.
Britax seats provide 360 degrees of protection:
The base has SafeCell Technology which when compressed, lowers the center of gravity and counteracts the forward rotation of the seat.
Integrated Steel Bars strengthen the connection to the vehicle and reduce forward flexing of the child seat.
Energy-Absorbing Versa-Tether is staged-release slowing the forward movement, with a two-point attachment anchoring the top of the child seat.
The HUGS (Harness Ultra Guard System) Chest Pads – these provide resistance to forward movement.
Deep side walls lined with EPP foam provide Side Impact Protection, distribute crash forces, shield from vehicle intrusion, and contain the head, neck and body
A Five-Point Harness distributes crash forces across the strongest parts of the body and give a secure fit. (Race car drivers use them, so they must be the best!).
Britax car seats offer comfort and ease of use:
I love the extra cushioning I discovered in the Marathon 70-G3. My baby seems so comfortable in his new seat!
If we’d had the seat when he was born, we could have used it right from the start with the Infant Positioning Insert.
And because little ones grow so fast, the Quick-Adjust, No-Rethread Harness is easy to adjust without disassembly.
Perhaps my favorite feature (it’s such a small thing but wow!) is the Harness Holders – hook/loop strips on the sides that you can attach the straps to momentarily while you place your child in the car seat. How many times have I fought with car seat straps that kept falling into the bottom of the seat while I tried to insert the baby!? Genius!
Since we’ve discovered Britax products, like their strollers and stroller accessories, our family has become enthusiastic about the brand. Learning about and using this car seat has just reinforced our belief that Britax makes quality products that protect kids!
When’s the last time you had your car seat installation inspected? Did you know about the LATCH weight limits?
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