Question about child size and types of booster seats



Question about child size and types of booster seats

I have two booster seats that I used with my oldest child (now 5 years old), and I can't remember what the appropriate age is for them. (And I've lost the documentation that came with them.) I have one that has the shield in front that the seat belt goes around, and another seat without the shield where the seatbelt and shoulder belt would actually be going around the child. I think one should be used for younger ages and the other for older ages, but I can't remember which is which. My daughter is 2 years old, and just about to outgrow her regular harness seat.



Can you provide some more details?

How much do your children weigh?

Is there a brand or model on your boosters?

Shield boosters are generally not the safest option. There may be safer choices for you, depending on the weight of your children and models of your boosters.


child size/models

My daughter is 30 pounds, and the shield booster I have is a Cosco Explorer. The other booster which has a removable shield is made by Fisher Price, model 9107. I have found some instructions on the bottom of it that show a child 30-60 lbs. in the seat with the lap belt and shoulder belt, and children 40-60 lbs. with the shield. So I guess that answers my question.


Please destroy your seats

They will be too old to be used when your 2 yo daughter needs them (ie, in 2 to 3 years). A seat has a maximum lifespan of 5 to 6 years from the date of manufacture. Too, a child needs to be in an appropriate seat until about 4'9"/80 lbs/8 yo. You can look for a sticker on the seat that will tell you the date it was manufactured. In any case, shield boosters are not recommended for use unless you remove the shield and use it as a backless booster in a vehicle with head restraints and with a lap/shoulder belt. See here for more info on shield boosters,

All that said your daughter will not be mature enough to use a booster of any sort until she is at least 4 if not 5 years old. She should stay in a 5 point harnessed seat until she is this age. If she hits 40 pounds (the weight limit of a 5 point harnessed seat) before that time, which I doubt she will, then you would need to consider other options. With each step of progression you lose a little protection (from rf to ff to booster).

How is your child outgrowing her seat? Are her shoulders even with the top slots? Are the tips of her ears above the seat shell? If neither of these are true, she still fits the seat. If one or both are true then you need another harnessed seat. What seat do you have now? You may have a seat with low top slots.

I would suggest that if your daughter truly does need a new seat that you look at a harnessed booster for her. Some that I usually recommend are the Evenflo Express Comfort Touch, Century NextStep (MX or DX model), Graco Cherished CarGo (though if your daughter is skinny I'd skip this seat as its deep wings may hold the shoulder belt too far away when used as a belt positioning booster) and Century Ascend. Fisher Price is ceasing manufacture of carseats but will be honoring the warranties so if you can find a Fisher Price Grow With Me that would be another option as well. All the seats mentioned above have a top slot height of 17", execpt the Fisher Price whose top height is 16". All the seats mentioned above also have front harness adjusters and can convert to a belt positioning booster (to be used only with a lap/shoulder belt) after the child hits 40 pounds. Also, the Express has straps that are less prone to twisting and the Fisher Price seat has no twist straps.

HTH - please post back if you have further questions or need more information.

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