Note: This product is only available in Europe for use in European Maxi-Cosi car seats.
Here at CSFTL, we are passionate about preventing vehicular heatstroke. With the warm days of summer heating up everything in the Northern Hemisphere, this concern becomes especially urgent. So we’re thrilled to see more manufacturers in Europe offering smart sensors to help combat these tragically preventable deaths. Today we’re having a look at Maxi Cosi’s new e-Safety sensor pad.
In 2018, Italy passed a law that required all caregivers to have safety sensors in car seats for children under the age of 4 to help prevent vehicular heatstroke. The law came into effect in November of 2019, and several manufacturers released devices to address this new requirement.
Maxi Cosi’s e-Safety (released first under their alternate brand name of Bébé Confort e-Safety) is a sensor pad that can be used in most Maxi Cosi brand car seats.
The sensor pad itself consists of a weight sensor with low energy Bluetooth inserted into a well-padded cover. This weight sensor is mounted in a thin, flexible, padded sheet which slides out of the cover so the cover can be cleaned.
The cover is washable at 30 degrees Celsius, followed by air drying. Be sure to unzip the cover and remove the sensor sheet BEFORE washing! When you reinsert the sheet, put it foam side up inside the cover. The sensor is located on the foam side, so it needs to be facing up to work properly.
The sensor is water-resistant, so it should be able to handle the inevitable wee accident, though thankfully we have not had to test this yet!
The first step to set up the e-Safety sensor pad is to download the e-Safety app from Maxi Cosi. Allow the app to send notifications and access location services. Then sign in or register for a Maxi Cosi account.
Next, pair the pad with the app by following the on-screen directions. Scan the QR code that’s located on a label on the sensor sheet inside the pad when prompted.
Then, add child details and emergency contact information.
Finally, tap the “OK, I got it!” button and press down on the cushion for 5 seconds to turn the pad on.
Once the pad is set up, you simply place it in the car seat, with the mesh side up. Thread the crotch buckle through the cutout at the front. A child’s weight activates the pad and the app shows that the seat is occupied
Note: the minimum weight for the pad to function is 2.5 kg, so babies who are lighter will have to grow a bit before the pad will work properly.
If the phone that is paired with the pad travels more than about 20 meters away from the pad, a notification is sent to the phone. This notification alerts even if the phone is set to silent mode. If the notification is ignored for more than a minute, a text message is sent to the emergency contact, including location information.
Notifications may also be sent to a smartwatch, but remember that it’s the phone that must travel away from the pad to trigger notifications.
The app is quite intuitive and easy to follow – it took about 2 minutes in total to set up. I found it kept defaulting the emergency contact phone number field to Italy, so be sure to change that when you enter the contact details.
I have a history of breaking apps when I mess around with them a bit, and I’m very pleased to say that Maxi Cosi’s e-Safety app managed to handle my heavy thumbs quite well. So far it has functioned perfectly even with my multiple deletions, changes, and to-and-froing – well done, Maxi Cosi!
The pad just sits in the car seat, so it’s incredibly simple to use. We did find that in some car seats it was necessary to move up the harness, because the pad adds some bulk under the bum.
Who Shouldn’t Use It
The sensor pad is a fantastic, easy to use device that can greatly increase a child’s safety. However, it won’t work in a few scenarios.
For instance, if you don’t have a smartphone (yes, there are still people who don’t have smartphones!), this solution is not for you – a smartphone is required for use. Or, if you have a smartphone but often leave it at home or forget it in the vehicle, this may not be a great option. The system relies on the smartphone traveling a distance away from the pad to trigger the alerts, and if that doesn’t happen then the pad won’t have any benefit. And finally, if your baby weighs less than 2.5 kg, you’ll need to wait until they exceed that weight for the pad to function properly.
We love anything that can help reduce hot car deaths, and the Maxi Cosi e-Safety sensor pad is an easy-to-use option that works with Maxi Cosi’s extensive line of European car seats. The app is clear and simple to follow, and the pad itself is intuitive to place and use. The simpler the solution, the more likely it is to save lives, and the e-Safety pad is definitely simple to use. Right now there are no plans to bring it to markets outside of Europe, but we hope Maxi Cosi considers doing so in the future!