New details and pictures are courtesy of Chris Lumley at clek. Make sure you thank him for sharing them with us! I’m not going to attempt to cover everything that was in the clek webinar Chris presented to the CPS community earlier this week but I’ll do my best to highlight the key points.
Lower LATCH anchor limit will be 48 lbs unless your vehicle manufacturer specifies a lower limit. After the child reaches the lower anchor weight limit, foonf will need to be installed with seatbelt. Always use top tether (if one is available) when seat is installed forward-facing.
I asked Chris for clarification on top tether usage and we tossed some ideas back and forth. I’ll try to summarize my understanding of the issues. Clek would really like to mandate top tether usage for all forward-facing installs because tethering helps the seat perform optimally. However, they don’t want to penalize consumers who may not have tether anchors in their vehicles or may not have them in the seating position they wish to place the carseat in. Due to foonf’s open beltpath design and the built-in lockoff device for the vehicle’s shoulder belt that is mounted up high near the top of the shell – the seat still performs well in testing when installed with a (3-pt) lap/shoulder belt but no tether. They acknowledged that the seat must pass NHTSA’s injury criteria testing (and it does) using a lap-only seatbelt or using just the lower LATCH anchors (without tethering) but they are not comfortable allowing that type of installation and will consider it a misuse.