Jupiter Komfort Kruiser

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Caviller

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The Jupiter Komfort Kruiser is a belt-positioning booster seat rated 33-100 pounds, or from 37" to 60" tall. The maximum seated height is 28". It is indended for use on kids from about 3 to 10 years old.




<A HREF="http://www.jupiterindustries.com/komfortkruiser.html" TARGET="_TOP"
><IMG SRC="http://www.jupiterindustries.com/images/prod_closeup-komkruis.gif" ALIGN="middle"></A>Jupiter Komfort Kruiser

<b>Introduction</b>

The Komfort Kruiser is the newest booster seat from Jupiter Industries, joining the Komfort GT in their product lineup. The Kruiser is not a combination seat, as it does not include an internal harness for smaller children. As a belt-positioning booster, it is rated for children 33-100 pounds and 37-60 inches tall (ages approximately 3-10 years). The maximum seated height is listed as 28". My review is for the original Komfort Kruiser- there is also a new "Special Edition" with a new stain resistant cover and improved padding.

<b>Features and Advantages</b>

<i>Open Loop Belt Guide</i>- Unlike many combination boosters, the Komfort Kruiser has an "open" guide for the shoulder belt. The guides on some combination models can catch the shoulder belt which may cause excess slack. This will reduce the safety of the booster if the belt is loose during a crash. This is not a problem with the Komfort Kruiser, and the positioning of the shoulder belt works quite well. The shoulder belt should be adjusted such that it is across the center of the shoulder and center of the chest of your child, and not on the neck or tummy.

<i>Easy Height Adjustment</i>- The headrest is attached with Velcro. It is very easily moved higher or lower to fit each child and to obtain the correct shoulder belt positioning.

<i>Lap Belt Guides</i>- These guides keep the lap section of the seatbelt positioned properly. The lap belt should ride high on the thighs or low on the hips for best protection, and must be threaded in the slot under the armrest. Like ALL boosters, you must use a lap AND shoulder belt for safety.

<i>Impact Protection</i>- The Komfort Kruiser makes extensive use of EPS foam, which is the same material used in bicycle helmets. This should absorb crash energy better than a hard plastic shell. In addition, the headrest has wide wings that should improve side impact protection.

<i>Convenience</i>- The Kruiser includes armrests, fabric mesh pockets for storage on the outside of each armrest and a flip down cover to protect the front of your vehicle seat from spills and abrasion.

<i>Padding and Comfort</i>- The Kruiser is well padded and very comfortable compared to most boosters of any type. The cover is soft and breathable. The headrest is adjustable and the wings provide nice padding for a sleeping child in addition to the side impact protection. If your vehicle has a removable headrest, the manual indicates that you may remove it when using the Kruiser.

<i>Non-slip base</i>- A layer of liner is included on the base that makes the booster more resistant to sliding and tipping in your vehicle.

<i>Adjustable Back</i>- The back of the Kruiser can be reclined to match the contour of your vehicle seat. A metal bar allows you to recline the back, such that both the base and back are flush against your vehicle seat. The recline settings are only to allow the Kruiser to match the contour of the vehicle seat, and not to allow extreme reclined seating. Unlike some boosters, the back cannot be removed.

<i>Fabric Care</i>- The cover zips off relatively easily. It is stain resistant and machine washable.

<i>Value</i>- The Kruiser can be found at retailers from $70-$100. A good value for all the features.

The Komfort Kruiser is a terrific booster, and looks very nice, too. The manual is clear and concise, and my 4-year old likes it a lot! It is extremely comfortable, and the features and adjustments will give a good, safe fit for kids of most sizes. It is wide enough and tall enough to accommodate most children for as long as they will need to be in a booster.

The official recommendation is that children should be in a booster until they are 8 years old, unless they are already 4' 9" tall. This is only a rough guideline. Because both kids and vehicles differ, the best way to know if your child is ready to move out of a booster is by fit. Children are not ready to move from a booster to a regular lap/shoulder seatbelt until.
1) They are tall enough so that their legs bend at the knees at the edge of the seat; and
2) They are mature enough to remain seated with their backs flat against the back of the seat and not slouch; and
3) The lap belt sits high on the thighs or low on the hips (NOT on their tummy!); and
4) The shoulder belt crosses the shoulder and chest (NOT on their arms or neck!); and
Each passenger must have their own lap AND shoulder belt and remain seated properly for the entire trip! Never allow children to share a seatbelt!

<b>Disadvantages</b>

<i>Wide and Bulky</i> This may only a problem if you have a small vehicle, or if you are trying to squeeze three carseats across in one row. Otherwise, this is not a problem as it is wide enough to accommodate most kids in comfort. Though somewhat bulky, it is surprisingly light weight for its size.

<i>No Harness System</i>- This model is only a booster, and is not intended to be a combination seat. While it is rated as low as 33 pounds, it is recommended that children remain in a 5-point harness until at least 40 pounds. For kids over 40 pounds, the Kruiser is a top choice. Most kids between 33 and 40 pounds should use a 5-point harness for daily use, though some older kids may be mature enough to sit properly in the Komfort Kruiser before 40 pounds.

<i>Not as tall as some boosters</i>- This model is not quite as tall as some other boosters, like the Jupiter Komfort GT. This means that the tallest kids may not make it to 100 pounds in the Kruiser. A child is too tall for a booster when they exceed the manufacturer's height limits, or once the tops of their ears are higher than the top of the booster shell. On the other hand, it does not block your rear visibility as much as a taller seat, either!

<i>Not Certified for Airplane Use</i>- All boosters that do not have an internal harness are not certified for airplane use. The Komfort Kruiser is no exception. Most children who are within the height and weight ranges for the Kruiser usually do not require a carseat on an airplane.

These disadvantages are all relatively minor, unless the "KK" happens to be too wide for the space you have available.

<b>Conclusion</b>

The Komfort Kruiser one of the best choices for a full-featured belt-positioning booster. With a plethora of safety and convenience features, it will be a safe option for most kids and last until they are ready to use the seatbelt without a booster. If your child is above 33 pounds and mature enough to ride in a booster full-time, then this model should be among your top choices!

Details on the Jupiter Komfort Kruiser can be found here:
http://www.jupiterindustries.com/komfortkruiser.html

<b>For more information on carseat safety please visit:

http://www.car-safety.org

http://www.seatcheck.net</b>


The Epinions review is found here:

<A HREF="http://www.epinions.com/content_87543025284" TARGET="_TOP">Epinions Review of the Jupiter Komfort Kruiser</A>
 
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