Heels & Horsepower Magazine


What is ISOFIX and why is it important?

by H&H Admin

ISOFIX is a term you will come across when shopping for either a car or a child car seat.  But what does it mean and why is it important?

In a nutshell, ISOFIX means “International Standards Organisation Fix”.   It is a universal system for fitting car sears that use attachment points built into the chassis of the car, rather than just a seat belt.  

Your car’s seat belts were designed for adult passengers which is why it is sometimes difficult (and unsafe) to fit a child seat properly.

ISOFIX is a quick, easy and safe way of installing a child’s car seat and is extremely effective in ensuring your child’s car seat is fitted properly and safely.  

How Does ISOFIX Work?

ISOFIX car seats have two metallic arms or connectors located at the bottom and to the rear of the seat that hook, or attach onto small metal bars (ISOFIX brackets), fixed to the frame of your vehicle.

The ISOFIX brackets are U-shaped anchorage metal bars fixed to the chassis of a car.  Once you have located the ISOFIX points within your car, simply push the car seat back onto the anchor points.  Your child’s car seat will lock onto the U-shaped anchorage bars instantly securing your child’s car seat to the chassis of the car. 

Where Are The ISOFIX Brackets In My Car?

It is important to note that not all cars are compatible with ISOFIX therefore it is advisable that you check if your car has ISOFIX fittings.  You can check your car’s owner’s manual or physically check for them yourself.

The ISOFIX brackets are usually clearly marked, particularly in modern cars.  In older vehicles, however, they are inconspicuously hidden.  Regardless, the best way to confirm their existence is by running your hand between the bottom of the backrest and the rear seat cushion, starting from nearest the car doors and moving towards the middle of the seat.  

Image: kokshop

ISOFIX brackets were designed specifically to reduce the risk of car seats being installed incorrectly.  Their size and location are regulated by the car manufacturing industry safety standards organization.   

They cannot be removed because they are welded into the chassis of the car and do not come at an additional cost.  ISOFIX is as critical as other car safety elements such as ABS, traction control, etc, and when used with an ISOFIX compatible car seat, could save your little one’s life. 

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