Let's Talk About LATCH Weight Limits
Did you know that LATCH has weight limits? While all car seats are required to have LATCH lower anchors, you won’t be able to use them to install the car seat forever!
LATCH was created to make car seat installation easier, which was a huge win! When LATCH was created, car seats were pretty lightweight and kids only used them for the first few years of their lives.
Now that car seats are heavier and kids use them for much longer, car manufacturers did some extra crash testing and came up with a LATCH lower anchor total weight limit (car seat and child!) of 65lbs. So, if a car seat manual tells you that the car seat has a LATCH weight limit of 40lbs, that means they have done the math and the car seat itself weighs 25lbs.
Pro Tip: Infant car seats with bases don’t have a LATCH weight limit! That’s because the weight of the car seat and the child weight limit for the car seat will always be below 65lbs.
Why not just keep using LATCH beyond the weight limit? The LATCH lower anchors (the metal bars in your car) are only crash tested to hold 65lbs. Car and car seat manufacturers can’t guarantee they will work as intended when holding more weight. So it’s important to switch to a seat belt installation once your child has reached the LATCH weight limit.
Remember: The vehicle seat belt can always be used to install the car seat - regardless of the weight of the car seat or the child!
Guest Post written by Britney Schroeder, CPST from Buckle & Latch (@buckleandlatch)