What is Isofix?
Isofix is a system to safely attach child car seats in cars, making it quick and simple. The name stands for International Standards Organisation FIX, and since 2006, all new cars must have Isofix fittings by law.
How does it work?
Isofix works by connecting the car seat (with Isofix connectors) to two small metal bars, or anchor points, in your car. These bars are usually where the back seat meets the seat cushion.
– Isofix creates a strong link between the car frame and the seat, reducing the seat’s movement forward and sideways.
– Attaching an infant seat to an Isofix base is easy with a click-in/click-out method, making it more likely to be fitted correctly.
– Isofix car seats are generally more expensive than those using a seat belt.
– There are different versions of the system, so check your car handbook before buying.
When it comes to ensuring the safety of your child during car journeys, an Isofix car seat is a game-changer. This secure and standardised system provides an added layer of protection by directly attaching the car seat to the vehicle’s chassis. In this guide, we will walk you through the steps on how to properly fit an Isofix car seat.
Gather Necessary Equipment
Before you begin, ensure you have all the necessary equipment:
1. Isofix-Compatible Car Seat:
– Make sure your car seat is specifically designed to be compatible with the Isofix system.
2. Vehicle’s Isofix Anchors:
– Locate the Isofix anchor points in your car. These are usually found in the rear seat, where the backrest and seat cushion meet.
3. Top Tether (if applicable):
– Some Isofix car seats come with an additional top tether strap. Check your car seat manual to see if this is required for your specific model.
4. Car Seat Manual:
– Always have the car seat manual on hand. This is crucial for understanding specific instructions and guidelines provided by the manufacturer.
Positioning the Isofix Car Seat
1. Locate Isofix Anchor Points:
– Identify the Isofix anchor points in your vehicle. These are typically metal bars hidden in the gap between the backrest and seat cushion.
2. Extend Isofix Connectors:
– Extend the Isofix connectors on the base of your car seat. These connectors are usually built into the seat and can be pulled out for attachment.
3. Align and Attach:
– Align the Isofix connectors with the anchor points in your vehicle. Push the connectors firmly into the anchors until they audibly click into place. Ensure a secure and snug fit.
Securing the Top Tether (if applicable)
1. Check for Top Tether Anchor Point:
– If your car seat comes with a top tether, locate the anchor point in your vehicle. This is usually on the rear parcel shelf or the back of the rear seat.
2. Adjust and Connect Top Tether:
– Adjust the length of the top tether strap according to the car seat manual. Connect it to the designated anchor point and tighten it appropriately.
Verifying the Installation
1. Shake Test:
– After securing the Isofix connectors and, if applicable, the top tether, give the car seat a firm shake. It should feel solid and not move excessively.
2. Check Indicator Lights (if available):
– Some car seats come with indicator lights that change colour when properly attached to the Isofix anchors. Refer to your car seat manual to understand the meaning of these indicators.
3. Refer to Car Seat Manual:
– Always refer to the car seat manual to ensure you have followed the manufacturer’s instructions correctly. This step is crucial for the safety of your child.
By following these step-by-step instructions and consulting your car seat manual, you can confidently and securely fit an Isofix car seat, providing optimal safety for your little one during car journeys. Always prioritise the safety guidelines outlined by both the car seat and vehicle manufacturers.