FAQs : Car Seats - Complete Air
- General Information on the Complete Air
- The instructions for all Dorel convertibles consistently state that the level-to-ground should be followed. That was the case when the Air Protect was introduced in the Complete Air, when it was shipped, and when it was purchased. We know that many of our consumers are also CPS Tech’s so we wanted to illustrate not only our recommendations based on testing our child restraints, but also, what the National Child Passenger Safety Certification Training Program manual defines as proper installation and use of child restraints.
- What is the proper recline angle for my rear-facing child?
- When your car seat is installed in your vehicle and your child is secured in the car seat, the level lines on side of plastic shell must be level with the ground.
- What is the correct way to secure a child in a rear-facing infant or convertible Child Restraint (CR)?
- The child must meet the weight/height requirements of the CR. The CR must be reclined according to the CR manufacturer’s instructions. Harness straps must be at or below the child’s shoulders with the retainer clip at armpit level. Harness straps should be snug and comfortable.
* Certified Passenger Safety Technician Curriculum: PAGE 224 CHAPTER REVIEW QUESTION
- Proper Rear Facing Installation and Angle Tips
- Dorel testing has shown that the resulting angle leads to the best crash test performance, even for older and larger children, for car seats that have level line indicators.
- If your car seat model has an angle indicator with a ball, rather than level lines, the ball should be between the two marks on the indicator that matches the weight of your child.
- NOTE: Check the angle indicator while parked on level ground.
- Do not recline more than 45 degrees from vertical.
CR recline indicator:
- Follow CR manufacturer’s instruction for acceptable rear-facing recline angle.
- Not all manufacturers recommend the same angle.
- As baby ages and obtains better head control, he/she may sit more upright. This can actually provide for improved crash protection.
- The recline angle indicator is part of the CR and should be used as indicated by the manufacturer.
* Certified Passenger Safety Technician Curriculum: pg 133- Correct recline angle
NOTE: Always consult CR manufacturer’s instructions for how to obtain proper angle. (pg 134)
- 30-45 DEGREE CLARIFICATION
- The 30-45 degree reference is on Slide 9-18 in the standardized curriculum, but is not otherwise contained in either manual. The curriculum is clear that the manufacturer instructions must be followed.
Parents should use angle given in CR manufacturer’s instructions (The correct angle or range allowed by a manufacturer generally is within the range of 30 to 45 degrees from vertical)
- CR spreads crash forces along the entire head, neck, and back
- Correct position helps keep airway open
- CR may be moved more upright as child grows & ages
- There are car bed options, if prescribed by physician, for children with special health needs
- Complete Air Convertible Car Seat Tips
- Height limitation of the Complete Air: If you would like to rear face your child in the Complete Air, he or she must be 40” or under and their head must not reach past the top of the headrest. If your child is 40” but still has clearance to the top of the headrest, we cannot recommend that you use the Complete Air to rear face your child. Once your child has reached 40 lbs or 40" or if the top of your child's head reaches past the top of the headrest (any one of these criteria), we cannot recommend you use this car seat to rear face your child.
Recline Angle: When the level-to-ground line on the Complete Air is used correctly, the back angle and the level-to-ground line that is molded in the side of the car seat should be 45-degrees. If you cannot achieve this angle in your vehicle, we cannot recommend you use this car seat to rear face your child.
Clearance from the top of the shell: When rear facing your child in the Complete Air, we do not use the 1” clearance rule of thumb. Instead, we state you can use the seat up to the point that the top of the child's head does not go past the top of the headrest as long as your child is not over 40" or over 40 lbs. At this time, the 1" rule only applies to our infant car seat. It is a specific guideline to each manufacturer, not an industry standard.
It is our policy and CPS Curriculum to follow the manufacturer's written instructions. It is the case with all of our car seats (except the onBoard Infant Seat which has dual level positions), to use the level-to-ground line for all weights and heights while rear-facing, which is 45 degrees.