Product Type: Graco child car seats
Newest Review: ... usual seatbelt. The booster seat is backless, and identical to the base of the Graco Junior Maxi car seat, with which it shares the sa... more
More hassle than it's worth?
Graco Backless Turbobooster
Member Name: lolly23
Graco Backless Turbobooster
Date: 19/11/10, updated on 19/11/10 (46 review reads)
Advantages: Looks sturdy, smart and stylish
Disadvantages: Shoulder strap is uncomfortable, instructions are just ridiculous!
I bought this car seat for my son, not out of necessity, but to replace his previous one that was beginning to look a little old and worn. I bought it for £14.99 with free postage from Amazon.co.uk, which I thought was a bargain. It was one of the cheaper models on the market, but it is a brand I trust and have used before so was confident in my purchase.
The booster seat is suitable for children weighing 15-36 KGs, or 33-79 LBS. This is probably for children aged 5+ (depending on the height and weight of the individual), and is the last step before sitting unsupported.
The car seat is the basic model that has a base seat with two hooks for the car seat to go round. The 'hooks' on this model are thick and chunky so can be used as arm rests. The arm rests are adjustable and can be raised/lowered by loosening a screw, then tightening again once you have reached the desired height. This in no way affects the safety of the seat.
You will also receive a thick strap that ties to the back of the seat, the other end had a plastic clip that you feed the strap through in order for it to be positioned correctly on the child, i.e. over the shoulder, rather than the neck, as can be the case with smaller children.
Fitting the seat proved a little more difficult than it should have been.
When I opened the box I found two 100 page booklets, I hoped that they would give me enough information to confidently install the seat. The first booklet was written in various other languages, the second contained English instructions, plus ten other languages - this meant that the instructions were nowhere near as detailed as I had imagined, or hoped for.
Most of the instructions are advising on how to attach the; head support, lower back support, armrest covers, and body pillows. This would be great, if I actually had any of these items!
This is a generic booklet that seems like it is thrown in with every Graco car seat, no matter how different they are. As mentioned, there were two 100 page booklets, only one and a half pages were relevant to this model; this seems pretty ridiculous. The information I needed could have been printed on a single page leaflet and would have saved Graco a lot of money on paper and printing costs - not to mention time for consumers to wade through this useless information.
To be fair, there was an extra couple of pages of warnings, although these were pretty irrelevant too, warnings such as, 'never use a second hand booster seat' - pretty useless information for someone who will be reading this leaflet as they have just bought a new booster seat! They also warn that, 'the booster seat can become hot if left in the sun' - really?
Anyway (rant over!), from studying the diagrams, I managed to figure out where the seat belt when and how to use the shoulder clip. The seat belt goes under the arm rests, as they usually do on these types of seats. The shoulder clip ties to the base of the seat, you then attach the clip to the seat belt on the opposite shoulder, adjusting the length to fit your child.
My son liked the look of this seat and was eager to sit in it. At first, he commented on how comfy it was, although once I attached the shoulder clip he complained that the strap dug into his back. I tried to adjust it but it still dug in due to the angle of the strap. I think that the seat could be used without the clip as it works in exactly the same way as other boosters that don't have the clip, it appears to be only used to adjust the height of the seat belt. I haven't removed it yet, as I plan to look online to check how this will impact on the safety of the seat.
Usually I like to test a product fully before reviewing it, but crashing my car is something that I am not willing to do for the purpose of this review (!), so I am unable to say how the seat performs upon impact. The unit does look secure though, and I imagine that it will work in exactly the same way as other units of this type.
Overall, I am happy with the car seat. It looks smart and stylish and is easy to use; the initial set up can be frustrating, although this is more of an issue with the instructions than the seat so I can't be too harsh on the product. I therefore award the Graco Backless Booster Seat.... 4 stars!
Summary: Not bad.
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