Whether a small trip to your local market or a long road adventure with loved ones, a booster seat is an absolute necessity once you realize that your child has begun to outgrow her car seat. With an energy-absorbing foam to protect a child’s head and chest, booster seats are manufactured with different features on the market, yet offering the same thing: safety.
It is normal that you may have a lot of questions if you’re just starting to shop for it and of course you want to buy one of the best convertible car seats for your child. Is there a difference between harness systems and belt-positioning systems? What about the best booster seat for a toddler? How can I attach the product to my car?
With these questions in mind and many more, we have already compiled our list of the 10 Best Booster Seats in 2020. Hopefully, with our list, you can find the right booster seat for your child more quickly.
How To Choose A Booster Seat – Buying Guide
When we decided to come up with our recommendations for the Best Booster Seats in 2020, we wanted to make sure that each seat we recommended met a set of criteria.
Age and Weight Regulations
According to AAA, all children until they are at least 4’9” tall should use booster seats. Most children will use a booster seat until somewhere between the age of 8 and 12. If your child’s height or weight exceeds the forward-facing limit for their car seat, you should use a belt-positioning booster until the car seat belt fits properly.
In addition to these weights and height requirements, it is important to consider whether your child can sit with his back against the car seat with the knees bent over the edge completely. If that’s the case, there is no need for a booster anymore.
Ease of Use
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration maintains a five-star rating system for booster seats. The more stars a seat has, the easier it is to use. NHTSA also takes into account the content and clarity of the instruction manual.
As your child grows, their seat will need to grow with them, too. With high-quality booster seats on the market, you can adjust the harness straps and the headrest height more easily. You will be able to able to take off quickly each time you place your child on the seat after ensuring a proper fit.
Latch, otherwise known as Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren has been in effect since 2002. It means that all car seats and vehicles have to be compatible with the LATCH system. The system allows you to attach the booster seat directly to the vehicle instead of just using the vehicle’s seat belt to secure the booster seat. Once you hear the “click” sound, it means that you have installed the product correctly and you are ready to go.
Another installation method is a seat belt installation and it is just as safe when done correctly. You might have an older car that is not compatible with the LATCH system and the only method to install is via a belt.
Having a booster seat that’s easy to clean is pretty much a necessity. However, there are many out there that do not have a detachable machine-washable cover. Those that do certainly stand out in the market and parents prefer them due to convenience.
When your child is in a booster seat, whether you’re traveling five or fifty miles per hour, you want to make sure that they are comfortable the entire time. Having a well-padded seat with plenty of support for their head will help your child have a better ride and enjoy herself more. Some parents use their cars to help their children fall asleep and if the seat is comfortable, most children cannot resist that feeling combined with the motion that comes with the car.
Finding the best booster car seats is not an easy task. Many new booster seats offer special energy-absorbing foam to protect the head and chest as well as a 5-point harness, which has a strap for each shoulder, hip, and between the legs. These features protect your little one if you happen to have an accident. If the straps get older, the vehicle seat belt can be used. Many booster seats have belt guides to assist to make sure that you are using the belt properly.
High Back vs Backless Seat
Parents sometimes get confused about whether to choose a high-back booster or one without aback. The determining factor is whether your child is heavier or taller than average for his or her age. In this case, backless booster seats support your child by lifting her a bit to sit against her back against the car seat comfortably. If your child is small, they won’t work efficiently.
A backless booster seat is also ideal if you happen to switch between cars frequently. They are lightweight compared to the high-back ones, therefore quite portable. Boosters without backs may offer features like cup holders and armrests. Since they have less material, they are cheaper compared to high-back boosters.
A high-back booster seat, on the other hand, surrounds your child’s body more and protects them more in case of a side-impact crash. Also, if your child loves sleeping in the car, they prevent him from slumping. They provide a much more comfortable sitting area for your child compared to a backless booster car seat.
Q: What are the benefits of booster seats?
A: Safety is the first benefit of a booster car seat that comes to one’s mind. However, there are other benefits that you can take advantage of.
Comfort: A booster seat is designed to put your little one in a position where they can sit comfortably for a long period of time. Manufacturers use ultra-soft and breathable materials in areas where your child is contacting the most, such as the seat, backrest, and headrest. These provide your child with a comfy area during daily trips or on long road adventures to enjoy the sightseeing more from his window.
Convenience: One of the benefits that come with some new booster seats is the ability to change from a booster seat with a backrest, to one without. This convenience ensures that your child will be able to use his booster seat for long periods of time.
Safety: Boosters offer special energy-absorbing foam to protect the head and chest of your child as well as a 5-point harness, which has a strap for each shoulder, hip, and between the legs. These features protect your little one if you happen to have an accident. If the straps get older, the vehicle seat belt can be used. Many booster seats have belt guides to assist to make sure that you are using the belt properly.
Q: Are backless booster seats safe?
A: As long as backless booster seats meet the standards of current law, they are certified safe and legal. This means your child should be over a certain height and weight.
On the other hand, a high back booster seat will protect your kid more in case of a side-impact crash. In addition, if your child likes sleeping in the car and slumps, then it’s better to buy a high back booster.
Most parents also say that they have difficulty in finding a secure seat belt fit for their backless booster.
Q: When can my child use a backless booster seat?
A: It is best to use a backless booster seat if your child is taller and heavier than average.
In this case, they support your child by lifting him a bit to sit against his back against the car seat comfortably. If your child is small, they won’t work efficiently as a backless booster seat is designed for a higher weight and height limit.
According to AAA, all children until they are at least 4’9” tall should use booster seats. Most children will use a booster seat until somewhere between the age of 8 and 12.
Q: Do high back booster seats need to be tethered?
A: Most high back boosters don’t require to be tethered. Some boosters sometimes have a latch but won’t have tethers at all.
My Babies Planet Overview
When it comes time to choose a booster seat for your child, you have to realize that your choice goes beyond features, price, style, or any other factor. Your child’s safety is the most important factor to consider when choosing a cart seat.
There are many booster seats on the market that may offer similar safety features. We believe that any of the products listed on our list of the 10 Best Booster Seats in 2020 is an excellent choice for your little one.
But, regardless of the products on our list, there is only one overall factor that determines which are the best car seats and that’s you. You will always know what is best for them and choosing the best baby booster seat will ultimately come down to your personal choice.
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