For the latest series of tests carried out by the Automobile Club du Luxembourg (ACL), 29 different child car seats in all sizes were tested
including the first car seat with built-in airbags (Bébé Confort AxissFix Air and the identical Maxi-Cosi AxissFix Air) and the first booster seat (Besafe iZi Flex Fix) approved in accordance with UN ECE Reg. 129 (i-Size).
All of the seats were tested and rated for safety, ease of use, ergonomics and use of toxic materials. 21 models were awarded the club recommendation “good”, with three being rated as “satisfactory” and one as “sufficient”. These seats clearly exceeded the statutory requirements in some areas, and the requirements of the consumer protection test were taken into account during their development. Four models were judged to be “insufficient”, in two cases because they failed the frontal-impact crash test.
The full test results are attached or can be obtained by calling the ACL on 45 00 45-1.
Information for parents
Parents should familiarise themselves with the available range of car seats before making a purchase. The results of this test should help in this regard. Not every car seat will fit equally well in every car, and parents and their children will also have their own personal preferences. It therefore makes sense to do a bit of research before buying a child car seat. It also makes sense to take your own car and your child with you when making a purchase so that you can try out the different models available.
- The child car seat must be fitted in the car as tightly and as securely as possible. With older vehicles in particular, problems can be caused by, for example, long belt buckle fastenings that make it difficult to strap the seat in securely.
- To ensure that the car seat is held in the optimal position, make sure the seat belt is kept as straight as possible without twisting.
- With infant carriers in particular, the belt must be long enough to enable the seat to be strapped in securely. If the belt is too short for a standard baby carrier, it might be possible to fit a baby seat with a separate base.
- Sometimes, with booster seats with a back, the belt will no longer automatically retract when the child bends forward. If this is the case, you should try another type of seat that is better suited to the positioning of the belt in your car.
- Child car seats with semi-universal approval (e.g. all car seats with support legs) are not suitable for all cars. These seats come with a list of suitable vehicles attached so that you can check whether they can be used in your car.
After buying a car seat you should familiarise yourself with the instructions. It is important that the car seat is fitted correctly in order to provide your child with the best possible protection in the event of an accident. It is especially important to make sure that the seat belt is pulled tight. Children’s jackets should be pulled out from below the lap belt to ensure that the belt lies as close to their body as possible. The belt and backrest should also be regularly adjusted as the child grows.
ECE R44 or ECE R129 i-Size?
Child car seats conform to the United Nations standard ECE R44 or to the new i-Size regulation, ECE R129, in force since 2014. Both of these standards were drawn up by the ECE (Economic Commission for Europe).
The older standard (R44) categorised child car seats according to the child’s weight. Guidance based on height should be considered as an additional indicator, with deviations between weight and age possible in some cases.
The new R129 standard is no longer based on the child’s weight, but on height. NB: All R129 car seats must be fitted as rear-facing seats for children up to the age of 15 months. To make it easier to fit car seats, vehicle manufacturers have come up with the i-Size standard. This means that every car that is fitted with i-Size seats is compatible with i-Size child car seats. R129 car seats must comply with strict requirements in order to be approved, e.g. they must also provide sufficient protection in the event of a side-impact crash.
Both of these standards will remain in force for several years, with R129 due to replace the older standard at a later date.
ACL car seat nearly new sale on 9 June 2018
Don’t forget: The next nearly new sale for child car seats is being held on 9 June 2018 from 9am to 12 noon at the ACL office in Bertrange.
Staff from ACL have checked the general condition of the seats for sale and can provide you with information on the relevant rules and safety standards.
ACL, 54 route de Longwy, L-8080 Bertrange, Tel.: 45 00 45-1, firstname.lastname@example.org