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Old 05-08-2014, 10:48 PM   #1
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Help me with my carseat hunt!

So I have a possibly stupid question to start with. We currently have an EvenFlo secure ride infant car seat for my 5.5month old son. He hasn't reached the weight or height limit for it yet but we have run into some problems that make me wonder if we should get him a new seat now as opposed to waiting until he reaches that limit. So he is a bit on the fluffy side, he's over 20 pounds, and the straps leave nasty red marks on his neck no matter what I do. I don't want to get any strap covers because they do not come with the car seat. It doesn't seem to bother him, but it does bother me. Also he is getting to the point where he wants to sit up, so when we put him in he sticks his little arms out so we can't put him in. But the thing is that even when he doesn't it almost seems like his shoulders are to broad for the seat, because there are times where I kind of have to tuck his arms in to get him positioned right. Are these things that if it were your child you would just switch to a RF convertible seat now?

Also I have been looking at convertible seats a bit and I am so confused on what to get. We don't have an endless budget, and as much as I hate to put a price on my child's safety the seats that are around 300 would probably be too much. I don't want to just get the cheapest thing out there I want a quality product so I can rest easy knowing he is safe in the car. We current drive a 2006 Subaru outback which is sooo not car seat friendly, we may upgrade later but for right now it has to fit in that. We plan to go try some out at BRU but they have so many options I want to get a list to try first. So chime in on what you have that works please. I plan to RF as long as possible too if that helps.

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Old 05-09-2014, 11:59 AM   #2
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Re: Help me with my carseat hunt!

We have two convertibles (one in each car) for my 21mo DD. We switched her over from the bucket as soon as we realized we weren't ever really hauling the bucket out of the car anymore with the chunky kid.

I did all kinds of research when switching to a convertible. For whatever reason, it was really important for me to have shoulder straps that could quick-adjust without rethreading them. Although it's certainly nice the three times I've noticed that her shoulder straps could go up, and I didn't have to rethread everything, I don't know if it's worth it.

We have a Britax Marathon in our Escape. When it's RF, it takes up a lot of space, so one of the front seats can't slide all the way back. Sometimes annoying on long car rides.

We have a Maxi Cosi Pria in the other car (a Suburban). It was on sale when I was doing the car seat shopping, and at that time, the same price as the Marathon, so I went for it. And it comes in red. It seems to take up less space RF. As I'm typing this, I'm realizing it might be better to switch the seats. Ha.

So, I can recommend those two seats, and tell you that I don't think the quick adjust straps are really a deal breaker.
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Old 05-09-2014, 12:02 PM   #3
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Re: Help me with my carseat hunt!

The Graco My size seems to fit well in many cars and last a long time. If you go on the Graco website, you can see the different names it has for the different stores and do some comparison shopping to get the best deal.
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Old 05-09-2014, 12:12 PM   #4
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Re: Help me with my carseat hunt!

I have heard a lot of good things about the chicco Nextfit. We have a radian but it takes up a lot of room imo rf.
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Old 05-09-2014, 12:14 PM   #5
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Re: Help me with my carseat hunt!

Nextfit for 224: http://www.albeebaby.com/chicco-next...-car-seat.html (Not the best deal ever, but solid if you need a seat now)

We've had a variety of seats, but I like the nextfit for the following reasons: easy install with seatbelt and LATCH, 9 recline positions to match up with car geometry and baby's age-appropriate needs, doesn't take up much space front-to-back, very comfy for my 2.5yo car sleeper, one of the tallest seats on the market so it will last for the duration of rear-facing

A question for your current seat... have you removed any extra infant/newborn inserts? If not, that's probably why his shoulders are squished.

And a suggestion for your current seat... while I would not put "aftermarket" strap covers on, I've seen a number of techs recommend cutting the toes off of a pair of baby socks and threading them on to the harness to prevent chaffing. That should not impact the safety of the seat and could be a good stop-gap measure.
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Old 05-09-2014, 01:44 PM   #6
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Re: Help me with my carseat hunt!

Thanks mamas I will look into all those seat recommendations! Bummer that you mention the radian being big RF cause that was one I had heard such good things about. I might try it in the car when we go look at them just to see.
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Old 05-09-2014, 01:47 PM   #7
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Re: Help me with my carseat hunt!

Quote:
Originally Posted by meljc View Post
Nextfit for 224: http://www.albeebaby.com/chicco-next...-car-seat.html (Not the best deal ever, but solid if you need a seat now)

We've had a variety of seats, but I like the nextfit for the following reasons: easy install with seatbelt and LATCH, 9 recline positions to match up with car geometry and baby's age-appropriate needs, doesn't take up much space front-to-back, very comfy for my 2.5yo car sleeper, one of the tallest seats on the market so it will last for the duration of rear-facing

A question for your current seat... have you removed any extra infant/newborn inserts? If not, that's probably why his shoulders are squished.

And a suggestion for your current seat... while I would not put "aftermarket" strap covers on, I've seen a number of techs recommend cutting the toes off of a pair of baby socks and threading them on to the harness to prevent chaffing. That should not impact the safety of the seat and could be a good stop-gap measure.
I like the sound of the nextfit, It seems like a nice seat, it will be the top of my list to try in my car. All the inserts are out of the seat we have, we had to take those out months ago. I will try the idea with the socks, that might be a good idea. I just have to figure out how to get them on there.
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Old 05-09-2014, 03:41 PM   #8
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Re: Help me with my carseat hunt!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nariah01 View Post
I like the sound of the nextfit, It seems like a nice seat, it will be the top of my list to try in my car. All the inserts are out of the seat we have, we had to take those out months ago. I will try the idea with the socks, that might be a good idea. I just have to figure out how to get them on there.
I'm not familiar with that seat but if you have to move the straps to higher slots by disconnecting in the back, you should be able to do it (maybe not easily). Perhaps an uglier, easier option is to get some fleece or cotton scraps and just sew them into loops around the straps (not to the straps, though). Just cut them off when you don't want them there.

Regarding the Radian, I have no personal experience. My understanding is that the "normal" rear-facing angle that is required for infants is very reclined and a huge space hog. Once your baby is older (sitting unassisted with excellent head control, so probably around 8mo) you can purchase the angle adjuster from Diono which makes the seat much more upright and then it doesn't take up as much room. Between needing both the RF boot AND the angle adjuster plus tough installations I've heard about, I didn't bother with it. I would only consider it if I really needed 3-across because it is super narrow.
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Old 05-09-2014, 03:47 PM   #9
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Re: Help me with my carseat hunt!

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Originally Posted by Nariah01 View Post
I like the sound of the nextfit, It seems like a nice seat, it will be the top of my list to try in my car. All the inserts are out of the seat we have, we had to take those out months ago. I will try the idea with the socks, that might be a good idea. I just have to figure out how to get them on there.
When you try the Nextfit, make sure you are trying a version with the REMOVABLE shoulder pads. There were a few nice updates in October, so you'd definitely want to judge based on one of those seats. Also take note to adjust the recline to a position that seems comfortable for your son in that car -- my son uses 1 in one car and 2 in the other, as the seats are sloped differently. You can't change the recline once it's installed. And try out both LATCH and seatbelt if you can. Once you look at the manual to see how the lock-offs work it's extremely easy (I generally prefer it to LATCH, even though the Nextfit has a very nice LATCH system).
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Old 05-09-2014, 04:52 PM   #10
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Re: Help me with my carseat hunt!

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Originally Posted by meljc View Post
When you try the Nextfit, make sure you are trying a version with the REMOVABLE shoulder pads. There were a few nice updates in October, so you'd definitely want to judge based on one of those seats. Also take note to adjust the recline to a position that seems comfortable for your son in that car -- my son uses 1 in one car and 2 in the other, as the seats are sloped differently. You can't change the recline once it's installed. And try out both LATCH and seatbelt if you can. Once you look at the manual to see how the lock-offs work it's extremely easy (I generally prefer it to LATCH, even though the Nextfit has a very nice LATCH system).
You are so awesome! Thank you for all the valuable input! Yeah with the car seat we have I would have to sew something around the straps probably, it has a no rethread harness, that you just move up or down and it clicks into place. I loved the seat when we got it but the more I deal with it and the more I see other seats it makes me wonder whether it was a good choice or not.

Actually because of that seat it makes me not want to try any Evenflo brand seats unless I have no other choice.
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