When your car seat manual does’nt agree with the expert…

This post is part of my #tipoftheday Series!

That car seat manual…

In 99.7% of cases – I will always ask you to follow the car seat manual. Why? Because its instructions are put together by the team that crash tested your car seat and also those who designed the car seat. But then it’s that very rare time – when I will tell you that something is OK – despite what the manual states. And the Britax Hi Way II car seat – is one of those…


Britax hiway Gap (1)


Now what I am talking about is whether or not this car seat needs a gap to the front seat – because the car seat manual does state that you should have – and I quote:

(..)After installation the gap between the seat in front and child seat should be a minimum of 10mm. It must NOT rest against the car seat(..)

Now I want to just point out that I am only talking about the Hi Way II here – that’s what this post is all about. So if you have another seat this doesn’t mean you can always touch the front – though there are very few seats today where you shouldn’t touch at all.

So why is it OK to disregard the statement from the Hi Way II car seat manual regarding the minimum gap to the front seat?

Simply put it’s because I contacted Simon over at In Car Safety Centre – who knows his stuff – and he again was kind enough to get in contact with Britax Sweden for me. They then sent this reply:

“The installation must be done first with a gap to ensure that the support leg is fully loaded and that the seat in front is not influencing the installation. After the installation is complete, correct & secure, then the seat in front may be adjusted so that there is contact with the seat in front. Our user guides will be adjusted over time to reflect this. The reason for the gap currently mentioned is to ensure that the user is not using the seat in front or the dash (in the case of a front seat installation) to support the child seat or hinder the correct installation.”

So basically we’re looking at yet another case of people trying to cram enough info into the manual and forgetting the fine text while doing so…but then again the Hi Way car seat is now quite an old model – though it’s still a very good car seat. It’s PLUS tested!


Installation video:


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