An appropriate child restraint is one which:
- conforms to the UN standard, ECE Regulation 44-03, or a later version of the standard, 44.04, or new i-Size (Regulation 129). Look for the E mark;
- is suitable for the child’s weight and height;
- is correctly fitted according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Child restraints are categorised according to the weight of the children they are suitable for. These weight categories correspond broadly to different age groups, but it is the weight of the child that is most important when deciding what type of child restraint to use.
These categories are often called ‘groups’ by manufacturers and retailers. There are four main child car seat groups – Groups 0, 1, 2 and 3. However, some child restraints systems are convertible and can be adapted as the child grows. This means that the restraint system could fit into more than one group. For example, the high back of a Group 2 booster seat might be designed to be removed so that the seat works just as a booster cushion when the child reaches 22kgs (48lbs). This seat, therefore, falls into both Group 2 and Group 3.