Car Seats - Need To Know

The Law & Car Seat Regulations

A child must be at least 135cm (150cm in Ireland) in height or 12 years of age before they are legally allowed to stop using a child restraint.

Currently two regulations run side by side, these are ECE R44/04 and ECE i-Size (R129)

ECE R44/04 was introduced in the 1980’s and ensures manufacturers follow a minimum set of safety standards when producing car seats. This is based on WEIGHT of the child.

ECE i-Size (R129) was later introduced in July 2013 as part of the newest European car seat Safety regulation called R129 which aims to bring the safety performance of car seats to a new, higher level. This is based on the HEIGHT of the child.

Car Seat Groups
Baby:

ECE R44/04 – A car seat suitable for child 0-13kg in weight. (Also known as Group 0+)

i-Size – A car seat suitable for a child from birth. Rear facing up to 15 months minimum.

Toddler:

ECE R44/04 – A car seat suitable for child 9-18kg in weight. (Also known as Group 1)

i-Size – A car seat suitable for a child from 67-105cm in height. Rear facing up to 15 months minimum.

Child

ECE R44/04 – A car seat suitable for child 15-36kg in weight. (Also known as Group 2/3)

i-Size – A car seat suitable for a child that is 100 to 135/150cm in height.

What is i-Size?
i-Size (integral universal ISOFIX) is one part of the UN Regulation no R129.

The Fundamental principles of the i-size regulation:

  • Reduced risk of misuse due to ISOFIX
  • R129 child restraints require children to be rear-facing up to at least 15 months
  • Seats are selected by the child’s height and weight
  • New side-impact testing
  • Improved compatibility: All i-Size certified vehicles will fit all i-Size car seats