Car Seat Compatibility & Fitting Lists
You may be surprised to learn that not all car seats are designed to fit all cars. Furthermore, just because a car seat is of a high quality and considered “safe”, it does not mean it will be safe in every car.
If a car seat is installed incorrectly or it is not compatible with the car it has been installed in, then the seat will not perform the way it has been designed to do so and may even become dangerous. Even the car seats that are considered 'universal' or 'semi-universal' will not necessarily fit correctly in every car.
Whilst car seat manufacturers have car seat Fitting Lists or Suitability Lists, these do not always give the full picture. Fitting Lists are simply a guide and a compatible fit cannot be guaranteed.
The only way you will be able to ensure compatibility is if we physically fit car seats into your car(s) before purchasing. Here at In Car Safety Centre, we will physically bring every car seat out to the car during your in-store appointment and fit it as we want to ensure that you and your child will get the best and safest car seat option for you.
Contact your nearest showroom and book a free consultation today.
Below you will find some more information about the specific brands that we stock and their Fit Finders.
Car Seat Suitability Lists
Maxi Cosi Fitting List
Maxi Cosi is a well-known brand, who have been in the industry for 13 years. Some of their most popular seats such as Axiss, Rubi, and Tobi, are considered to be ‘universal’ which would indicate to parents that these seats will fit any car, however, this is not always the case. This is an element that should be considered when using this Fitting List, and another important reason as to why you should get the car seats fitted in store before buying.
Maxi Cosi Car Seat Fitting List
Britax Fitting List
Britax has been around for over 30 years and is a very popular brand. They have a detailed online Fit Finder which lists potential problems such as the position of ISOFIX, seatbelt length and on checking top tether points in appropriate model.
Britax Car Seat Fitting List
Cybex Fitting List
Cybex is one of the newer car seat manufacturers on the market but they still have a great choice of seats available. Their online Fitting List is one of the quickest to use as you simply enter the car manufacturer to display a list of models and the suitable positions within each one. They also have an online form where you can ask about models not listed on their compatibility lists.
Pallas 2 Car Seat Fitting List
Sirona Car Seat Fitting List
Recaro Fitting List
Recaro has been involved in vehicle seating since 1963 and entered the child car seat market in 1998. Their online Fitting List involves entering your car model, then choosing from a list of makes to display a picture of positions in the car where the car seat is compatible. In the event your chosen seat has not been tested with your car, Recaro has a facility where you enter the model's details and they offer to check and get back to you.
Recaro Car Seat Fitting List
Kiddy Fitting List
Kiddy has an online compatibility checker where you enter the make and model of your car. They claim that their seats fit most cars and to visit a retailer if there are any queries.
Kiddy Car Seat Fitting List
Axkid Fitting List
Axkid is a Swedish company, established in 1996 specialising in rear-facing seats. They have a list for each seat available as a PDF online. Axkid says that while they are constantly working to update their lists, that a car not being listed does not exclude the seat from being used. They are happy for the seat to be used if it fits appropriately. They also point out that the suitability of the seat will depend on other factors such as recline and passenger leg room.
Axkid Car Seat Fitting List
Diono Fitting List
Diono has a PDF Fitting List available for download on their website for the Radian 5. It is divided into rear facing and forward facing sections and lists each position in the car. Diono base their Fit Finder on size and not the availability of top tether points. If your seat needs a top tether this needs to be checked independently of the fit finder. They specify that the seat may suit other vehicles other than those listed. Diono also says that rearward facing installations may result in the seat in front being moved as far forward as possible which may not be suitable in some situations.
Diono Car Seat Fitting List
BeSafe Fitting List
BeSafe, a Norwegian Company, have been manufacturers of Children’s car seats since 1963. They specialise in extended rear facing seats. The BeSafe website has a regularly updated downloadable PDF Fitting List for each model. They also advise to check the installation, available space in the vehicle with the seat installed and position of the child to verify if the seat is suitable for your situation.
BeSafe Car Seat Fitting List
Common Issues Fitting Car Seats
Here at In Car Safety Centre, we have an extensive range of car seats and this is not only to get one that is best suited to your child but also to get one best fitted to your car.
This is important because we come up against a number of challenges when fitting car seats and these cannot be demonstrated by a Fit Finder, again highlighting the importance of getting the seats’ compatibility checked in store.
One of the most common issues that we come across is sloping seats. Many cars have sloping seats where your back seat will sit at an angle rather than flat. This can be problematic particularly for a rear-facing seat as the angle counteracts the recline of your rear-facing seat, causing your child to sit in a more upright position. In some cases, if your seat has a good recline then this will not be detrimental. However, if your child is too upright it can cause their head to fall forwards. In the case of a young baby or a child with additional needs, their airway may become restricted.
It’s important for us to identify potential ‘Buckle Crunch’ issues which is where the plastic component of the seat belt buckle is holding the child seat in place. This can cause the plastic to shatter in a collision. Short seat belts can also prove difficult to work around. This is not something that people often consider but it affects many car seat owners. Sometimes we are able to solve this by using an alternative routing, otherwise, we will provide a seat that best suits your needs. These are just some of the challenges we face and you will unfortunately not get any of this information from a Fit Finder.
That is not to say that Fit Finders are ineffective but rather that they should simply be used as guidance before physically getting the car seats tested in your car(s).