How to install a car seat

How to install a car seat

Tūru haumaru (child car seats) are incredibly important to keep our tamariki safe while travelling in vehicles. By law, children under 7 must be in appropriate child car seat, but we recommend they stay in a tūru haumaru (child car seat) until they are over 7 years of age and at least 148cm tall.

To ensure child car seats are effective, they must be installed correctly. Different car seats can have different instructions. Because of this, you should always follow the manufacture recommendations. However, this article will cover general principles to follow as well as some accompanying instructional videos from Waka Kotahi NZTA.

Certification standards

Depending on where your child seat is from, it may have different steps to install it correctly.

There are three types of certification standards which a car seat must be, in order to be legal for use in Aotearoa New Zealand.

The first is the Australian/New Zealand standard AS/NZS1754. The Australian and New Zealand standard is shown by the Australian Tick Mark sticker on the child restraint.

Next is the European standard ECE R44.04. The European standard is shown by a circle with an E inside of it. It will also have a number corresponding to which country it was manufactured in.

Lastly is the US standard FMVSS213. Child restraints that meet the United States standard must have the FMVSS213 number and show the letter “S” to indicate they are suitable for use in New Zealand.

Regardless of which standard your car seat meets, once properly installed, it should sit firm without any unneccesary movement.

A car seat should move no more than 2.5cm once installed. If you are struggling to correctly install the car seat, we recommend you find your nearest Car Seat Technician to help you.

Australian/New Zealand Standard Car Seats

There are five main styles of car seat approved by the Australian/New Zealand standard AS/NZS1754.

These styles are:

- Capsule and base

- Booster

- Covertable car seat - rear facing with stabilising bar

- Convertable car seat - rear facing without stabilising bar

- Convertable car seat - forward facing

 

To help pick which car seat is most suitable for your tamariki, please read our article on “How to choose the correct car seat”.

Below are videos from Waka Kotahi NZTA, detailing how to install each variation of car seat.

Capsule and base

Booster

Convertable car seat - rear facing with stabilising bar

With seatbelt 

With ISOfix

 

Convertable car seat - rear facing without stabilising bar

Convertable car seat - forward facing 

European and American standard car seats 

There are five main styles of car seat approved by the European standard ECE R44.04 and US standard FMVSS213.

These styles are:

  • Capsule
  • Booster
  • Harnessed booster
  • Convertable car seat - rear facing
  • Convertable car seat - forward facing

Below are videos from Waka Kotahi NZTA, detailing how to install each variation of car seat.

European standard car seats

Capsule

Capsule and base

With seat belt

With ISOfix

Capsule only

Booster

Harnessed booster

Convertable car seat - rear facing

Convertable car seat - forward facing

United States standard car seats

Capsule

Capsule and base

With seatbelt

With LATCH

Capsule only

Booster

Harnessed booster With seatbelt

With LATCH

Convertable car seat - rear facing With Seatbelt

With LATCH

Convertable car seat - forward facing With Seatbelt

With LATCH