Child booster seats

Child booster seats  - Safety seats for children - Seating and Safety Restraints - Lincoln MKS Owners Manual - Lincoln MKS

The belt-positioning booster (booster seat) is used to improve the fit of the vehicle safety belt. Children outgrow a typical child seat (e.g., convertible or toddler seat) when they weigh about 40 lb (18 kg) and are around four (4) years of age. Consult your child safety seat owner guide for the weight, height, and age limits specific to your child safety seat.

Keep your child in the child safety seat if it properly fits the child, remains appropriate for their weight, height and age AND if properly secured to the vehicle.

Although the lap/shoulder belt will provide some protection, children who have outgrown a typical child seat are still too small for lap/shoulder belts to fit properly, and wearing an improperly fitted vehicle safety belt could increase the risk of serious injury in a crash. To improve the fit of both the lap and shoulder belt on children who have outgrown child safety seats, Ford Motor Company recommends use of a belt-positioning booster.

Booster seats position a child so that vehicle lap/shoulder safety belts fit better. They lift the child up so that the lap belt rests low across the hips and the knees bend comfortably at the edge of the cushion, while minimizing slouching. Booster seats may also make the shoulder belt fit better and more comfortably. Try to keep the belt near the middle of the shoulder and across the center of the chest. Moving the child closer (a few centimeters or inches) to the center of the vehicle, but remaining in the same seating position, may help provide a good shoulder belt fit.

When children should use booster seats

Children need to use booster seats from the time they outgrow the toddler seat until they are big enough for the vehicle seat and lap/shoulder belt to fit properly. Generally this is when they reach a height of at least 4 feet 9 inches (1.45 meters) tall (around age eight to age twelve and between 40 lb (18 kg) and 80 lb (36 kg) or upward to 100 lb (45 kg) if recommended by your child restraint manufacturer).

Many state and provincial laws require that children use approved booster seats until they reach age eight, a height of 4 feet 9 inches (1.45 meters) tall, or 80 lb (36 kg).

Booster seats should be used until you can answer YES to ALL of these questions when seated without a booster seat:

Can the child sit all the way back against the vehicle seat back with knees bent comfortably at the edge of the seat cushion?
Can the child sit without slouching?

 Does the lap belt rest low across the hips?

Does the lap belt rest low across the hips?
Is the shoulder belt centered on the shoulder and chest?
Can the child stay seated like this for the whole trip?

Types of booster seats

There are generally two types of belt-positioning booster seats: backless and high back. Always use booster seats in conjunction with the vehicle lap/shoulder belt.

Backless booster seats If your backless booster seat has a removable shield, remove the shield. If a vehicle seating position has a low seat back or no head restraint, a backless booster seat may place your childs head (as measured at the tops of the ears) above the top of the seat. In this case, move the backless booster to another seating position with a higher seat back or head restraint and lap/shoulder belts, or consider using a high back booster seat.

 High back booster seats

High back booster seats If, with a backless booster seat, you cannot find a seating position that adequately supports your childs head, a high back booster seat would be a better choice.

Children and booster seats vary in size and shape. Choose a booster that

Children and booster seats vary in size and shape. Choose a booster that keeps the lap belt low and snug across the hips, never up across the stomach, and lets you adjust the shoulder belt to cross the chest and rest snugly near the center of the shoulder. The drawings below compare the ideal fit (center) to a shoulder belt uncomfortably close to the neck and a shoulder belt that could slip off the shoulder. The drawings below also show how the lap belt should be low and snug across the childs hips.

If the booster seat slides on the vehicle seat, placing a rubberized mesh sold as shelf or carpet liner under the booster seat may improve this condition. Do not introduce any item thicker than this under the booster seat. Check with the booster seat manufacturers instructions.

The importance of shoulder belts

Using a booster without a shoulder belt increases the risk of a childs head hitting a hard surface in a collision. For this reason, you should never use a booster seat with a lap belt only. It is generally best to use a booster seat with lap/shoulder belts in the back seat.

Move a child to a different seating location if the shoulder belt does not stay positioned on the shoulder during use.

Follow all instructions provided by the manufacturer of the booster seat.

WARNING: Never place, or allow a child to place, the shoulder belt under a childs arm or behind the back because it reduces the protection for the upper part of the body and may increase the risk of injury or death in a collision.

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