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Old 10-15-2006, 08:59 PM   #11
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Re: Car Seat Dilemma: WWYD? (with 2 dc or more)

Car seats can be really confusing. I have been dealing with them for almost 8 years now and I still wonder if I have it right at times.

I have a 4yr old that weighs 32 lbs and he rides in a Marathon on the second to lowest strap openings so he will be in that past 5 I'm sure.

My oldest son is about 70 lbs and rides in a parkway. I wish he could still be in a 5 point too. Especially when he falls asleep and starts to lean over.

I would keep your kids in a 5 point as long as possible.

As for fitting 3 seats in a car I think harnessed seats would be the easiest if you can get them all in together. It is really hard to do up a seatbelt around a booster with a car seat right next to it. I have felt like my arm was going to be stuck inbetween forever a few times.

Some stores will let you try seats in your car before you buy them to see if they will fit.

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Old 10-15-2006, 09:51 PM   #12
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Re: Car Seat Dilemma: WWYD? (with 2 dc or more)

I am not sure why the manufacturer's state you can use a booster from 3 yo, but I suspect it is because a lot of children outgrow the 40lb/lower harness height seats by height way before they are 40lbs, so their parents are only looking to buy one more seat instead of two and buy a booster. Every "step up" in car seats is a step down in safety (rearfacing to forward facing, harnessed to booster, and booster to regular seat belt). A 2.5 yo is not mature enough to sit up straight and not mess with the buckles in a booster, and have a higher risk of slipping out from behind the seatbelt.
Here is a list of car seats that harness past 40lbs:
Britax marathon/decathalon/boulivard (rf 33lbs, ff 65lbs)
Fisher Price Safe embrace deluxe (rf 33lbs, ff 55lbs)
Sunshine Kids Radian (rf 33lbs, ff 65lbs)
Britax Regent (ff only 80lbs)
Safety First Apex (ff only 65lbs, requires a headrest behind child's head and is on sale right now at Specialtybaby.com for $99)
When the Graco safeseat 2 is taken off the shelves and re-released it is supposed to harness to 50lbs.. right now it only harnesses to 40.

The Graco cargo is a good harnessed seat, but doesn't make a great booster. If you are looking to pass it down and get your daughter a Parkway anyway in a few years, I would say this is a good choice.
Your roundabout is good for 6 years, so you have one more year then you thought to use it.
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Old 10-15-2006, 10:04 PM   #13
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Re: Car Seat Dilemma: WWYD? (with 2 dc or more)

Okay, here is my recomendation. Since you have space issues, and are in the market for a seat, this is what I would do in your situation. Because she is young and still needs to be harnessed, I would let you mom get a Sunshine Kids Radian. It is a harnessed seat to 65lbs. It is an extremely narrow seat and will work well in limited space. Then I would move the YDD to the roundabout. When another dc comes along and you ODD is old enough/mature enough for a booster, you would be able to move her to a booster, the middle to the radian and only have to worry about a seat for the new baby. Target.com carries the radian. HTH!
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Old 10-15-2006, 10:11 PM   #14
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Re: Car Seat Dilemma: WWYD? (with 2 dc or more)

So you guys rock! But help me with the Britax seats. Those definately would be my preference. I went on the Britax website and tried to discern the differences in them and really can't tell much, even in price. They seem mostly the same, so any insight on the difference in a Marathon , Decathalon, or Boulevard (or a Regent). Pro's and cons. They seem so similar in function, look and size. The roundabout in the only one that seems to be significantly smaller in size.

Also, anyone found a good cup holder that attaches to their Britax? My dd is constantly losing her cup because there's no place to put it.
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Old 10-16-2006, 05:49 AM   #15
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Re: Car Seat Dilemma: WWYD? (with 2 dc or more)

well I just bought t he decathalon b/c I found it cheaper than a marathon. Im new to britax so I can't tell you the difference betweent th em all


http://www.specialtybaby.com/br20decocars3.html

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Old 10-16-2006, 07:41 AM   #16
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Re: Car Seat Dilemma: WWYD? (with 2 dc or more)

laws vary by state. Personal preferences vary.

Your child is safest rear facing as long as possible. Then in a 5-pt as long as possible.

My kids are 8, 7, nearly 4, 20 months, and one on the way.

My 2 oldest are in boosters, but I am trying to afford a 5-pt that goes to 80lbs for them. My 2 youngest are rear facing. My new baby will be rear facing. I'll have to fit 3 carseats acrtoss and have 2 RF seats in the captains chairs. It will be inconvenient for me sure, but safer for them.
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Old 10-16-2006, 09:27 AM   #17
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Re: Car Seat Dilemma: WWYD? (with 2 dc or more)

We have a Roundabout - we used it since birth for DS. We love it. It is great rear facing and foward facing. I would really really recommend it. You YDD can use it and it can be used by the next babe.

For ODD - I would NOT go with anything that didn't have a 5 pt harness. At 2.5 - she is just too young for the booster style seats. It wouldn't be safe enough. You can get a Marathon though. They go from birth to atleast 60lbs (I am thinking it may actually have been 80lbs but that sounds crazy.) It is bigger, but that is mainly only a factor for rear facing. We would have gotten it for DS, but it wouldn't fit rear facing in our cars and we don't like the carrier style carseats - just not safe enough for me. Anyways, it isn't that much bigger than the Roundabout when they are both foward facing. That would take your DD up till she is really ready for the booster style seat.

Personally - if I were you this is what I would do- if you plan to turn YDD around when put into the new carseat, I would get Marathons for both of them. BUt rearfacing as long as possible is much safer so I would personally get the roundabout and keep YDD rear facing and get a Marathon for ODD.

Other carseats may have smaller bases and fit better *if* there are three in your car - but IMO you only have two kids now, and those two kids should be as safe as you can possibly make them - which means a Britax - there is not a safer carseat on the market than Britax. It meets European safety standards - which far surpass US standards.
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Old 10-16-2006, 09:33 AM   #18
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Re: Car Seat Dilemma: WWYD? (with 2 dc or more)

If you are worried about how they would all fit into your car - go to BabiesRUs. BRU lets you pull up front and take the displays and test fit them in your car. YOu have to leave your license with them for "insurance" that you won't driv eoff - but that may really help in determining which ones fit best. GL!
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