In the test, the organizations assessed the seats for safety, use, ergonomics and the presence of harmful substances. It is striking that not a single car seat tested was unsatisfactory. In previous years it turned out that car seats were offered that did not pass the test. It is impossible to tell from a seat in the store, showroom or on the internet whether or not it is safe for a child.
The ANWB and ADAC have been testing child seats every year since 2003 to inform parents about the quality. Several seats that failed the test in recent years have been improved or taken out of production by the manufacturer.
Tips when purchasing a car seat
– You must be able to mount the car seat securely and stably in the car. Older cars, in particular, sometimes have long seat belt buckles so that you cannot fasten some car seats firmly and stably.
– For optimal fastening, the belts should be as straight as possible and not twisted.
– Especially with baby seats, you should check carefully whether the length of the seat belt is sufficient to mount the seat. If the belt is too short, you can opt for a seat with a separate base.
– With a booster seat with a backrest, the belt may no longer automatically retract after the child has leaned forward. If so, try a different seat where the position of the shoulder belt guide better matches the geometry of the seat belt.
– Car seats with semi-universal approval (eg seats with a support leg) should not be used just like that in any car. These seats come with a car type list showing the cars in which the seat may be used. These car type lists can also often be found on the seat manufacturer’s site.
– Car seats that combine a loose seat with an Isofix base are usually easier to install because they weigh less and are smaller. You just can’t turn them sideways to make lifting and buckling your child easier. Depending on the car and usage, a 1-piece swivel seat or a 2-piece seat may be more suitable.
– In the instruction booklet of your car you will find information and guidelines about which car seats are best for your car.
– If you have bought a seat, familiarize yourself with its operation. After all, nothing is more annoying than looking in the dark and / or in the rain for the right levers, catches or braces, with a whining child in the seat. Always consult the manuals of the seat and those of the car.
– Correct installation of the seat is essential for maximum protection of the child in the event of an accident. Make sure to tighten the seat belts. Pull your child’s jacket out from under the hip belt to make sure it fits snugly to the body. In addition, the belts and backrest must be regularly adjusted to the size of your growing child. Switching to the next larger car seat should never be done too soon.
More and more car seats meet the new i-Size standard. A standard with stricter safety requirements, whereby the height of the child is decisive in the choice of the car seat rather than the weight. In addition, according to the i-Size standard, children must be transported against the direction of travel up to the age of fifteen months.