Skip to main content

Safety Hub

Here you'll find all of our handy safety tips and tricks from our Child Passenger Safety Technician, Scott. Use these videos alongside your car seat and vehicle manual to ensure your child is buckled in correctly, and riding safely and securely in their car seat.

The Diono Radian® is the original 3-across all-in-one car seat. We're often asked, "will a Radian fit 3-across in my vehicle?" Our CPST, Scott, explains how to find out.

"Truth is, it’s not always an easy yes or no answer; a lot of it depends on the actual physical space in your car. Diono car seats are 17 inches wide so you need a bare minimum of 51 inches of space from one side to the other in your back seat. The other thing you have to think about it actual seat shape and seat contour, if there’s a big hump in the center, and where your seatbelts are located. Sometimes in a situation like this where the seat belts are right next to each other, a car seat might actually sit on one or both of the seat belt buckles. In this scenario, you might have to fudge the seats and move them a little bit to get them to install correctly. I always recommend installing the center seat first to see if you can get a good installation there and then move to the outboard positions to see if you get good installations. If that’s true and you can get a solid installation in all three seating positions, then 3-across will work for you."

Your car seat manual is one of the most valuable pieces of information you can find.

Watch this video to learn where the manual is located in your Radian® R Series and Radian® Q Series. On the back of your Radian® Q seat you’ll see a book icon that indicates the manual is stored inside that door. Simply flip it up and you’ll find the manual. On the Radian® R seat you’ll find the same icon on the child’s left side of the seat, that means the manual can be found underneath the cover. Simply undo the cover and pull out the envelope containing the manual. Just in case you’ve lost or misplaced your manual, you can find all of our manuals for new and older models at www.diono.com/product-manuals


Car seats get messy! We can't prevent that but luckily, Radian® covers are easy to remove and washable so you can keep them looking their best.

Scott walks through how to remove the cover of a Radian® R Series all-in-one convertible car seat.

  1. Firstly, loosen the harness as you’ll be undoing it from the back to pull the harness straps through
  2. Remove the harness pads
  3. Remove harness straps from adjuster strap and pull through front of seat
  4. Remove crotch buckle at rear-facing belt path
  5. Unclip fabric at back of seat at front and back of seat. Unclip at seat base where your child’s hip would be
  6. Remove cover from shell of car seat
  7. It is recommended to hand wash the cover for best results
  8. If top load machine has an agitator, we recommend washing on a gentle or a no-agitation cycle, this can also be used
  9. Hang to dry. Do not tumble dry.
  10. Do not machine wash the memory foam. Hand wash only.

Top tip! Your rear-facing base is a great tool to use as a stand.

The Diono Angle Adjuster is used with a rear-facing Diono Radian® car seat to give you additional space between the vehicle seat and the car seat itself. On the Angle Adjuster you’ll find arrows which tell you the direction to slide it underneath the seat. Follow the instructions to install your rear-facing Radian®, then grab it at the top, lift it up and slide under the Angle Adjuster until it stops against the back of the rear-facing base.

It is important to remember that the Angle Adjuster can only be used with rear-facing kids who can sit up unassisted and have complete head control. If neither one of those requirements is met, at whatever stage of development your child is at, then you cannot use the Angle Adjuster.

Radian® all-in-one car seats require the adjustable bottom to be dropped when the passenger is riding forward-facing and weighs more than 25 lbs.

Simply locate the two bars on the bottom of the seat, squeeze together and pull them out until you see the bottom has dropped and is locked in position.

If you are using your Radian® all-in-one car seat in rear-facing or booster mode, you do not need to adjust the bottom.

Remember to check that it’s locked into position each time.

Safe Stop is a load limiting device that is included with every Radian® convertible car seat. It is required for use for passengers that are forward-facing and weighing less than 40 lbs.

The Safe Stop is located at the back of the seat and is installed between the harness straps and the harness adjuster strap.

In a crash, Safe Stop is designed to expand like a bungee cord and increase “ride down,” which is the amount of time a child is moving forward after initial impact. By increasing ride down, Safe Stop is able to decrease the forces that are exerted on the child’s body.

Will Radian fit 3-across in my vehicle?

Our most common question asked is “will I be able to fit Radian 3-across in my vehicle?”. Here’s how to tell!

Read More

Keeping your Diono car seat clean and looking its best

6 ways to clean your car seat covers and keep your Diono car seat clean.

Read More

In this video Scott explains the proper harness strap location for a rear-facing child. When rear-facing you’ll always want the harness straps at or below the shoulders, meaning they’ll come up and over the shoulder rather than from above. This is because when a child is rear-facing in a frontal collision they’re going to slide up and forward in their car seat, and harness straps coming in from below the shoulders limits how much they move in the seat. Remember, rear-facing is always at or below the shoulders.

In this video Scott explains the proper harness strap position for a forward-facing child. When forward-facing you’ll always want the harness straps above the shoulders, not down below. As your child grows, be sure to check the harness straps are in the correct position. Remember, forward-facing is always above the shoulders.

This is a really common mistake with child car seats, but it’s easy to avoid when you know how!

The chest clip is a pre-crash positioning device designed to keep harness straps over your child’s shoulders. The last thing you’ll do in your 5-point safety checklist is tighten the harness straps and position the chest clip at arm pit level.

A chest clip that is too low could cause the harness straps to slip off their shoulders. A chest clip that is too high causes risk of injury to their neck. A properly positioned chest clip, which should be level with their arm pits, will make sure the harness straps function correctly and keep your kiddo seated safely and securely.

How do you know if your harness is properly tightened? It’s super easy: The Pinch Test. A harness is not tight enough if you can pinch any of the webbing when checking near the collar bone. Simply tug on the adjuster strap to tighten the harness and if your fingers now slide across the webbing and you can no longer pinch the webbing, that’s a properly tightened harness.

Harness Straps: How to Use Properly and Why They Are So Important

Harness straps play a crucial role in your child’s safety, but it can feel tricky to get them just right. Let’s take a look at how to fit them properly, as our CPST explains why they’re so important.

Read More

Car Seat Fit Guide: All-in-one car seats

Ready for the road? Make sure to check for these common car seat fitting mistakes and learn these top tips for safe travels.

Read More

For car seat safety best practice, use our Child Passenger Safety Technician 5-point checklist before each journey to ensure your child is buckled correctly and safely.

  1. Check installation only at the belt path being used. Give it a firm handshake and if it moves less than one inch side to side or front to back it’s secure.
  2. Check the harness straps are in the proper position. For a forward-facing child, harness straps should be above their shoulders. Rear-facing children should have their harness straps at or below their shoulders.
  3. Do the Pinch Test to check if the harness strap is secure. If you can pinch the webbing between your fingers at your child’s collarbone, tighten the harness until you can’t pinch the webbing.
  4. Position the chest clip at arm pit level. Not at their belly button or tucked under their chin, secure the chest clip at arm pit level.
  5. If your Diono® seat has a head support, position it so the bottom is about even with their jaw as this will offer the most protection.

No matter the distance you’re set to travel, be sure to use this 5-point checklist before every journey so you can be certain your child is riding as safely as possible.

We often see Diono head supports positioned way too high or way too low, which is a risk to children’s safety.

When adjusting the head support, also referred to as head wings, the bottom should be just about even with the child’s jaw.

In a Radian® R seat, you can use the head support when your child reaches the third harness slot. In a Radian® Q seat, you can use the head support when your child reaches the second harness slot. If the head support can't be lowered enough, place it at its highest position until your child is tall enough to use it correctly.

We often see caregivers checking their car seats from top to bottom for a secure installation. However, our very own CPST, Scott, explains that the ONLY place to check for a secure installation is at the belt path being used. Simply give it a firm handshake and if it moves less than one inch side to side or front to back, it’s secure.

Remember to follow each step of your car seat manual when installing your car seat to achieve the best fit for your vehicle.

Bracing is when a rear-facing car seat touches the vehicle seat in front of it. Diono® does allow for bracing IF the vehicle manufacturer allows it. To check, simply head to the airbag section of your vehicle manual and see if it mentions anything about not allowing anything to touch the back of the vehicle seat, or put pressure on the vehicle seat from underneath, or hanging anything heavy in the seat pocket.

If any of those things are prohibited, bracing is not allowed because it could interfere with the airbag sensors in the seat. In that case, the vehicle seat will need to be adjusted so there is a space just wide enough for a pencil’s width between the vehicle seat and the car seat.

If your vehicle manual doesn’t mention anything about airbag sensors, bracing should be okay.

Check out the Diono Angle Adjuster for a solution in vehicles that do not allow bracing. The Angle Adjuster is a foam pad that sits under your rear-facing Diono car seat and changes the recline angle just a little, freeing up space between the vehicle seat and the car seat. It’s important to note that the Angle Adjuster can ONLY be used with a rear-facing child that can sit up unassisted and has complete head control.

Get a Safely Installed Car Seat with this CPST 5-Point Check

Okay, you’ve read your vehicle and car seat manuals and you’re pretty sure that your car seat is installed correctly, but you want to be extra sure before you hit the road. Good news, there’s a CPST Approved Checklist for that!

Read More

The importance of child passenger safety

We’ve been passionate about child passenger safety since 1999. But what’s the big deal? We asked our CPST, Scott, why child passenger safety is so important.

Read More