CSB’s Carseat Lockoff Guide
As LATCH weight limits continue to shrink due to a combination of heavier car seats and federal standards, more car seats require installation using the seatbelt once the child hits a certain weight. The problem with seatbelt installations is that most parents have no idea how to lock the seatbelts in their vehicle in order to properly install a carseat or infant seat base. Ask the average parent what a switchable retractor is and you’ll probably get a blank stare in response.
This is why every car seat in North America should come with a built-in lockoff! If you are installing with a seatbelt instead of lower LATCH anchors and your carseat has a lockoff device – use it and you will never have to worry about understanding pre-crash locking features on vehicle restraint systems.
Function of built-in lockoff device: A lockoff device can serve more than one function but its main purpose is to cinch or clamp the seatbelt in such a way that it cannot loosen and your tight car seat installation stays tight!
2023 Car Seats With Lockoff(s)
Lockoffs on Infant Seat Bases
There are different types of lockoffs that require different routing so make sure you are following the directions that came with your carseat. Never assume anything. Below we discuss the two most common types of lockoff systems for infant seat bases.
Lockoff just for shoulder belt portion of the seatbelt
- Bases with these types of lockoffs will have a lockoff on each side of the base but you only use one lockoff, on the side where the shoulder belt goes up to the retractor. Do NOT use the lockoff on the buckle side.
Single lockoff device
- clamps both sections of the seatbelt (lap belt and shoulder belt)
Convertible seats with lockoffs may have them for both rear-facing and forward-facing or just for forward-facing.
Clek Foonf & Fllo lockoffs (different types of lockoffs for RF & FF beltpaths)
Graco 4Ever DLX lockoff (only for forward-facing installations)
Forward-Facing Combination Seats Lockoffs
Chicco MyFit – Lockoff cinches just the shoulder belt portion of the seatbelt (this lockoff design can also be found on all current NextFit, Fit4 and OneFit models)
ClickTight Technology (available on certain Britax models): The ClickTight compartment acts as a lockoff too!