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Old 11-16-2012, 11:30 PM   #1
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My DH's vehicle needs to be replaced so I am passing on my Volvo XC90 to him and getting a minivan. We prefer to buy used vehicles.

I have an almost 3 yr old DD who is 40ish lbs and 39ish in tall but still comfortably RFing in her XTSL. My DS is 6 months, RFing in a Blvd70.

I started doing a bit of searching on car-seat.org about Grand Caravans/Routans and noticed there are issues with TAs in the 3rd row. We plan on having at least one more child, maybe two. I was leaning toward a Routan or GC since they seem to be a bit less expensive around here, but now I am second guessing that decision based on the TA issue. I really don't know anything about HBBs, since we aren't obviously at that point in our car seat journey with my oldest being 3. If we have 4 kids and two have to be in back, do HBBs get tethered?

Any opinions on Siennas or Odysseys?

Also, are second row bench seats or captains chairs better for RFing installs? Since I will be RFing both kids, I am picturing that captain chairs will make the third row nearly inaccessible for adults?

What other issues do these minivans have when it comes to installing Radians and Britax seats?

I just want a minivan that installs our seats with the least amount of headaches. Any recommendations?

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Old 11-16-2012, 11:54 PM   #2
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Re: Minivan suggestions please!

I absolutely LOVE my 08 Odyssey. I will definitely buy another one when we are in the market (which won't be for awhile). The only seat I've had issues with is Radian RFing in the second row with latch. It loosened itself. But it goes in super easy FF and in the third row. You can get an acceptable seatbelt install, but it is tricky and takes some time. I moved my Radians to DH's car and have a TrueFit in there RFing instead.

Odyssey has 3 tethers in the back, but only 1 set of latch (in the middle).

Benefit of Honda-you can take the middle row middle seat out, and slide the captains chair over, which makes getting to the rear seat much easier.
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Old 11-17-2012, 08:59 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvsviola
I absolutely LOVE my 08 Odyssey. I will definitely buy another one when we are in the market (which won't be for awhile). The only seat I've had issues with is Radian RFing in the second row with latch. It loosened itself. But it goes in super easy FF and in the third row. You can get an acceptable seatbelt install, but it is tricky and takes some time. I moved my Radians to DH's car and have a TrueFit in there RFing instead.

Odyssey has 3 tethers in the back, but only 1 set of latch (in the middle).

Benefit of Honda-you can take the middle row middle seat out, and slide the captains chair over, which makes getting to the rear seat much easier.
Hmmm.... I really was hoping to keep DD RFing. She is a big girl for almost 3, but she still has plenty of time RFing in the Radian. I guess all I can do is test drive one and try an install. Any advice on a seatbelt install? I have the angle adjuster since we needed it for our XC90.
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:04 AM   #4
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I also love my Odyssey. Just got it a few months ago and haven't had any issues. Mine is a 2012 and has latch in all 3 positions in the 2nd row and both outboard positions in the 3rd row (tethers in all 6 seating positions). So we have tons of options of where to put everyone.

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Old 11-17-2012, 09:36 AM   #5
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Re: Minivan suggestions please!

Hondai heard was good. Stay away from town & country.... so that's all I heard when we were trying to decide if station wagon/crossover & mini van.
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:43 AM   #6
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Angle adjuster will help. It tends to over recline, and is hard to get tight. Have your DH help get the belt right. My experience is that it slides more left to right than I am comfortable with.
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:40 PM   #7
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I love our '11 Odyssey! One of my favorite things is that all three seats in the second row have LATCH (two in the third row have anchors), so I could put DS and DD RF in the center and passenger side seats, while maintaining access to the third row.
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Old 11-18-2012, 12:37 PM   #8
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Re: Minivan suggestions please!

Siennas and Odysseys are definitely the most expensive minivans. I'd look at Kia Sedonas (and Hyundai Entourages, basically the same as the Sedona, although discontinued after 2009). We have one and have installed our Radians RF and FF in the third row without any issues, and a BV70 in the second row, again without any issues. There are 4 top tether anchors for our model year (2008), and it cost much, MUCH less than a Sienna or Odyssey of the same age with comparable miles and options.
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Old 11-18-2012, 10:24 PM   #9
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Re: Minivan suggestions please!

Question: Do all these vans allow (per the Owner's Manual) for RF on the third row? I have a Honda Pilot and LOVE LOVE it, but the OM says not to put a RF seat in the third row. We want to rent a van for travel in a few months, but I want to be able to have the kids in the 3rd row (both RF) and adults in the front. If the van we rent makes it easy to access the 3rd row for adults and the kids can RF in the 2nd row with easy access to the 3rd row we'll do that; but for now I'm looking at all the options/possible restrictions.

ETA: traveling with 4 adults and 2 RF kids.
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:56 PM   #10
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Re: Minivan suggestions please!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjordan View Post
Siennas and Odysseys are definitely the most expensive minivans. I'd look at Kia Sedonas (and Hyundai Entourages, basically the same as the Sedona, although discontinued after 2009). We have one and have installed our Radians RF and FF in the third row without any issues, and a BV70 in the second row, again without any issues. There are 4 top tether anchors for our model year (2008), and it cost much, MUCH less than a Sienna or Odyssey of the same age with comparable miles and options.
Having had both a Sedona and a Sienna, I have to add my 2 cents. I've had 3 different minivans, and have always been able to fit the cars seats in just fine. I used to have an 03 Sedona, but we got rid of it after things started falling apart (too many things for the age of the car). We traded it in for an 03 Sienna. I has been a much more reliable vehicle. So just based on my experience, I would never recommend a used Kia... But I love my Toyota!
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