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Car seats, car seats, car seats????!!

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Urgh... this turned out to be more of a task than I thought. ANyone care to share your experience with your car seats with me?

DD is almost 12 mos and while she's not quite at the max capacity for her infant seat I'm doin research on car seats and it is CRAZY!!

I'm looking at the britax marathon for its comfiness (seems really cozy when I saw it in person), seems to be quite safe, and isn't SO expensive (~$160). Then I think, is she really going to use it that long, or will it "expire" before she gets to the weight limit? Am I just going to end up with a booster anyways??

But I know there are other seats out there that I am lookin at that I havent heard as much about but seem good also.
post #2 of 10
She'll outgrow it before she hits the weight limit or the expiration date And yes, you'll need a booster afterwards (and maybe another harnessed seat, depending on the age/height/weight at which she outgrows the Marathon.
post #3 of 10
Regardless of which convertible seat you choose now, you will need a booster when it is outgrown. You may need a forward-facing harnessed seat. Carseats are generally outgrown by height not weight, so the taller the harness height, the longer the seat will last.

The TrueFit will last the longest, and give the best odds of avoiding another harnessed seat. It will also fit the vast majority of children RF until 35lbs. (In case you didn't know, you should keep her RF for as long as possible.) The Radian will also last a long time RF and FF. The Marathon will also last a long time if your child is average sized or small, but doesn't always quite get kids to booster age (about 5-6yrs old).
post #4 of 10
we went from a graco snugride to a marathon at about 9 mos - she still had room in the snugride, but didnt look comfy anymore and i wanted a better quality, safer seat. we had a scenera as our back up and have used it a handful of times. now dd is 2.5 a little over 35 lbs and about 3' tall - we just got a frontier on sale 20% off at BRU cuz the scenera has a 40lb limit and since she is fast approaching we took advantage of the sale and passed the barely used scenera onto a friend that babysits. so that really should do us til she is out of a carseat. although i do anticipate having to buy a second high back booster when she outgrows the marathon in a few yrs (hopefully). she is on the tall side now and if she keeps at this rate and outgrows the marathon in height sooner than i want her in a booster, even just for backup or emergencies, i will DEF buy another frontier, even though they are pricey. we have only had the frontier about a month and despite all the complaints i have heard about installing, i think its much easier than the marathon which is why i keep the marathon in my truck as the primary seat currently and install the frontier as needed in dh's car and grammy's car.

i would buy the marathon if i were you - we love ours. i have heard that even tho there are a few seats that rf to 40lbs, that most kids are too tall. idk - jmo
post #5 of 10
Originally Posted by katie9143 View Post

i would buy the marathon if i were you - we love ours. i have heard that even tho there are a few seats that rf to 40lbs, that most kids are too tall. idk - jmo
The Graco MyRide has a 40lb rear-facing limit and is the first seat in the US to do it However it has roughly the same harness slot heights as the Marathon so it probably won't get all kids to 40lbs rear-facing. The tallest seats on the market right now (convertibles) are the Radian and the TrueFit. After that is the Evenflo Triumph Advance, then I think the Recaro Como & Signo, then the Marathon, which is just a hair ahead of the Boulevard.

The Radian and TrueFit stand the best chances of getting you to booster age. With the others, it's likely that you'll need to buy another harnessed seat in 5-6 years. All of the other above seats mentioned have a 6 year expiration (from date of manufacture, NOT date of purchase), except the Radian is 8 years and the TrueFit is 7 years.

I think the Recaros are also 8 years but don't lend themselves well to extended rear-facing because they leave very little leg room. Also, the Britax convertibles have very little leg room rear-facing. The Radian and TrueFit have loads of leg room in comparison. (and plus the TF is quite possibly the most padded seat I've ever felt)

And if the Marathon is that much on sale somewhere, it may be an older date of manufacture, meaning you may only have 4-5 years out of it instead of 6.
post #6 of 10
If I had it to do over, I'd go with a TF in your situation - she stil gets to be RF right now, then it will work forward facing very likely until she gets to booster age.

Otherwise, you could be looking at two more seats plus a booster...and that's no fun, but then again, you never know what will be available by the time she outgrows the standard size limit on the convertibles - I did LOVE my Triumph when my eldest dd was little. It's a good seat too.

It IS overwhelming - isn't it? Here I am with a 7 year old and I STILL can't decide what to do with my new baby
post #7 of 10

I have 2 kids.  There's little Thomas and Katie.

The car seat I use for Thomas is the Graco nautilus 3-in-1 car seat, mainly because my kids wont outgrow it that fast, so I wont have to replace it (its 3-in-1 so it lasts a long time).

He loves his seat, and he often falls asleep in it on 30 minute or more car tripssmile.gif


The car seat I use for Katie is a zeus 360 convertible car seat  This seat was $399, but I picked it up on amazon for $286.  Now the zeus has this main feature, where you can turn the seat 90 degrees and strap your kid in without bending over and turning.  


Between the two, I like the graco the best.

My wife is expecting another one soon, and were deciding which one to get next :)





Edited by cjdj3 - 10/20/12 at 8:40am
post #8 of 10

For the reference of other people who might be reading this thread, keep in mind that this thread is 3 years old. 


Also, the Nautilus doesnt RF, so if your kid is under 40 lbs, this carseat is not for you :)

post #9 of 10

Yeah, this thread is so old... the car seats have changed a lot in over 3 years!! Now most car seats RF to 40 lbs, and some go even higher. It's important if this is going to be bumped up to the top to update some of the information. :)


The Nautilus is a good car seat for forward facing children over age 2. It's not appropriate for infants or toddlers, who should be rear facing. Ideally kids should rear-face as long as they still fit in a rear-facing seat. Most experts will advise at a minimum selecting a seat that has high enough height and weight capacity to keep a child rear-facing to two or longer. 


CJDJ, feel free to start your own thread to get some advice about which car seat to choose for your next child. Several of us here are car seat technicians and have a pretty good idea of what's available. Helpful information would be: Your vehicle, all the car seats you currently own (do you still have an infant seat left over from your other kids, for example?), ages and sizes of your older kids (sometimes it makes sense to pass down a smaller-capacity seat and upgrade the older child to a higher-capacity one), and your budget. 

post #10 of 10

Thanks for the helpful information.  I really love Britax and Graco car seats.  I think they make the safest car seats on the market.

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