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Britax:only drawback is the price?? - Page 2

post #21 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maedze View Post
The Marathon can EASILY fit in both the Accord and the Element. You don't need a 45 degree angle install. It can go upright as thirty degrees. I've put Marathons and similarly sized convertibles in both those vehicles with room to spare.
This. I have a Camry, which has almost the exact same dimensions as the Accord, and I have a Marathon rearfacing that has been there for over a year, fits perfectly fine, and plenty of room for the passenger in the front.
post #22 of 41
I scannd through the replies, and noted a lot of discussion of price, features, install, harness heights, weight limits, etc, all of which are valid points of consideration, but wanted to touch on eth safety issue - and just wanted to state, very CLEARLY, that Britax does *NOT* have a SAFETY advantage at all. I still see so many parents believeing that a britax seat is somehow SAFER, which is absolutely not true. All seats pass the same standards to be sold, so all meet the same standards. Technically, all seats are equally safe.
However, in some recent testing by both the US and Canadian governments, we have started to see a trend that not only do Britax seats not perform better than many other seats...they actually perform worse in some of the tests performed. Now - we do NOT know how the crash tests might or might not translate to real-world safety, we do not know for certain whether or not a seat that passes with flying colors is actually going to protect a child better than a seat that *just* squeaks by under the required limits. It seems like of course, a seat that performs better in a crash test would perform better in real life, right? But we really just don't know. There is simply no way to know, unless we want to start using live children as test dummies. (I'm going to assume none of us want that, lol.) So anyway...you can argue other merits of a seat, but on the safety front, please, PLEASE do not think for a second that a Britax is safer. There is simply no evidence at all that is true, and possibly some minor evidence to the contrary.

now, we do know that it is important, in terms of safety, to use a seat CORRECTLY and that it be appropriate for the child, and istalled correctly in the vehicle.
So..a Britax seat which installs easily and which you know how to use, might very well be the best choice, especially in a situation where you need it to be as "dummy-proof" as possible, maybe for a grandparent?
But in terms of value, of use, many other seats blow the britaxes away at this point. A britax isn;'t big enough to get many kids to booster age, it can't be used with newborns, and it has a shorter shell and lower RF weigth limit...in short, you get a lot less for your money in terms of both rearfacing and forwardfacing time, than in many, many other seats at this point. And, you'd pay a huge Britax price for that less-time, as well.
Most parents i meet are looking to get the most for their money, and their are seats for half the price that will last longer, and which, quite frankly, perform better in governmental testing. Even though i know that higher performance in crash testing might not translate to better real-world protection, i'll say that when picking a seat for my own kids, i DO take it under advisement how a seat performed in crash tests. I feel it is a PIECE, a small one, of the overall equation.

I agree, I woudl go and try out the seats..your holy grail might not be mine, or anyone elses. If i personally were buynig a convertible seat, I'd probably go for a Radian XTSL, since it has the 45 lb Rfing limit and a tall shell. but, it does have some quirks, and wont work for everyone.
The truefit ARB would be on my list, as would the 50-lb Alpha Omega seats, complete air, myride, possibly one of the new Recaro convertibles. Many people also like the symphony 65 and triumph advance, and they are great seats worthy of consideration, but I personally probably wouldn't, because i don't like the continuous harness height adjuster.
post #23 of 41
When I bought our Marathons, they were the only decent seats available. I love them, but we just went for a Radian for DS since it was on sale and it makes it possible (though still very difficult) to get three across in our back row. The best thing about the Radian (besides being thin) is that it sits low on the seat instead of having a big base like the Marathon, so my son can sit directly in it instead of having to climb up on the vehicle seat next to the carseat then in. Yay for no more muddy boots prints there!

On the other hand, the Radian was a total pain to install, and while I've done the best I can and have an acceptable install, I don't have the rock-won't-budge-at-all install I am used to from Britax. And it would only take me a minute to install the Britax with latch, the Radian took ages and a lot of trouble and bad language.

For ease of install, I'd definitely pick Britax over a Radian if you don't need a skinny seat. I don't have experience with the Tru Fit or the MyRide or the Complete Air, and I suspect I might have ended up with one of them if they had been around when I was buying for my older two. I'd suggest going to babies R Us sometime when you have time to try installing a bunch of seats and see what you think.

Britax does have lower harness slots than other seats. My tall six year old has been in a booster almost a year, but she still has plenty of room in it. A younger/shorter friend of hers has ougrown it already though. It's not so much of an issue if there is expected to be a younger child to pass it down to though when the older one ougrows it and moves to a Nautilus or something though.
post #24 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by mama2mygirl View Post
What would you consider?
For a convertible, right now my top considerations would be a radian seat (several options) or a true fit premier. After those I'd consider the new graco and the regular true fit.

-Angela
post #25 of 41
As someone who used Britax exclusively for many years, my recent seat purchases have been a Radian XT and True Fit Premier. I do think that there was a time (even 5 years ago) that Britax did make convertibles with the best features AND used the best materials. But now, other companies are catching up and offering seats with the same features that used to be used exclusively by Britax, PLUS new features, and will last kids longer. If you've never seen a Radian IRL, it's truly an impressive seat. The frame is steel, not flimsy plastic. The overall design is well thought out and very very sturdy.

There are a couple of companies that I would not trust, but I do trust The First Years and Sunshine Kids with my kids' lives every day. I'd probably buy the My Ride if it had a RF tether or anti rebound bar. Not a big deal for many, but it's a deal breaker for a RF convertible for me.
post #26 of 41
Ease of installation is definitely something to think about. My '06 Britax Decathlon is way more easy to install than my '08 Graco Nautilus, though in every other respect the Nautilus is a better seat.

I wouldn't have bought a seat based on ease of installation, but I'm glad that my Britax is so easy to install/uninstall--with carpools to school and drop-off at a nanny share, we move the Britax between 3 different cars at least 3 times per week. On occasion, the person installing/uninstalling the carseat is taking care of 3 3 year olds by herself! Every second counts in that situation.

ETA: I just realized you're looking for a RF/FF convertible, in which case the Nautilus will not work for you. It is a FF harness/HBB/Backless booster convertible.
post #27 of 41
another truefit vote, my sister is a former britax only and loves her truefit. i tried the radian 80 and it just was not as easy to install as the britax so i took it back and havent been brave enough to try anything but britax since
post #28 of 41
When I need to replace our Britax convertible when my son outgrows it RF, I will likely not be buying another Britax convertible, that is unless they come out with something between now and then that can compete with all the higher height/weight limit seats.

I love the seat though. It's very well made, and very easy to use and install, and it has served us well with both kids. But I'd like to keep my son refacing as long as possible, and I simply cannot do that with a Britax at the moment. I will admit, I'm not thrilled about trying another brand. There are a lot of things I like about Britax.

I did buy a Britax Frontier (forward facing only harness to booster) earlier this year though, and we love it .
post #29 of 41
Right now I have a Britax Boulevard, which has been perfectly fine, other than the fact that it's super heavy and lately I feel like I'm constantly moving it between my car and my sister's car when she babysits or we go places together. So I finally gave in and ordered a radian 80. I'd been planning on getting it eventually for the higher rear facing limit, and now I'm just ready to be done moving seats. I can't wait until it comes... although, after reading this thread I'm a little nervous about installing it. How is it different from installing a Britax?
post #30 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maedze View Post
The Marathon can EASILY fit in both the Accord and the Element. You don't need a 45 degree angle install. It can go upright as thirty degrees. I've put Marathons and similarly sized convertibles in both those vehicles with room to spare.
OK, I lied..upon closer inspection I actually have a Boulevard. And the thing is HUGE. The problem with the Element is not that the seat does not fit...there is plenty of room in back...but that the darn head wings prevent actually getting the kid into the seat! I suppose some could crawl in from the other side and get the kid in that way, but I can't.

With the Accord it impedes the front seat space. I'll look into the 30 degree not 45 thing, but according to the instructions it came with you have to recline it all the way to install it rear-facing. This leaves the person in the front seat with so little leg space that their knees are around their ears. Again installing it into the center is not an option (until my kid is mobile) because I can't crawl into the car and place him there (I have bursitis in my shoulder).

So long story short I wish I had purchased a smaller seat.
post #31 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chamomile Girl View Post
OK, I lied..upon closer inspection I actually have a Boulevard. And the thing is HUGE. The problem with the Element is not that the seat does not fit...there is plenty of room in back...but that the darn head wings prevent actually getting the kid into the seat! I suppose some could crawl in from the other side and get the kid in that way, but I can't.

With the Accord it impedes the front seat space. I'll look into the 30 degree not 45 thing, but according to the instructions it came with you have to recline it all the way to install it rear-facing. This leaves the person in the front seat with so little leg space that their knees are around their ears. Again installing it into the center is not an option (until my kid is mobile) because I can't crawl into the car and place him there (I have bursitis in my shoulder).

So long story short I wish I had purchased a smaller seat.
The blvd is the same shell as the marathon. I have 2 (3 if you count the ones my parents have) and have installed it in any number of cars and have never had a problem with the head wings. Are you installing in a 2 door car? That's the only way I could see that being an issue.

And it can go more upright. We have one in our 03 civic just fine.

-Angela
post #32 of 41
What the instructions mean is that it has to be in the mechanical recline mode. The actual angle of recline can be tweaked to be more upright but pulling the base of the carseat away from the seat bight and applying pressure where your child's bum would go (rather than feet) when you're installing it. Our Marathon (same shell) fits nicely in our Corolla with plenty of passenger room. It also fits in the middle well, leaving plenty of room for driver and passenger.
post #33 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chamomile Girl View Post
OK, I lied..upon closer inspection I actually have a Boulevard. And the thing is HUGE. The problem with the Element is not that the seat does not fit...there is plenty of room in back...but that the darn head wings prevent actually getting the kid into the seat! I suppose some could crawl in from the other side and get the kid in that way, but I can't.

With the Accord it impedes the front seat space. I'll look into the 30 degree not 45 thing, but according to the instructions it came with you have to recline it all the way to install it rear-facing. This leaves the person in the front seat with so little leg space that their knees are around their ears. Again installing it into the center is not an option (until my kid is mobile) because I can't crawl into the car and place him there (I have bursitis in my shoulder).

So long story short I wish I had purchased a smaller seat.
Ah, the Boulevard is identically sized to the Marathon. Trust me, it does fit in your car. I actually own a Boulevard and am very familiar with the seat.

You are correct, the seat must be in the mechanical reclined mode for rear facing. You can, however, manually install it more upright for an older child. This is standard operating safety procedure.
post #34 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chamomile Girl View Post
OK, I lied..upon closer inspection I actually have a Boulevard. And the thing is HUGE. The problem with the Element is not that the seat does not fit...there is plenty of room in back...but that the darn head wings prevent actually getting the kid into the seat! I suppose some could crawl in from the other side and get the kid in that way, but I can't.

With the Accord it impedes the front seat space. I'll look into the 30 degree not 45 thing, but according to the instructions it came with you have to recline it all the way to install it rear-facing. This leaves the person in the front seat with so little leg space that their knees are around their ears. Again installing it into the center is not an option (until my kid is mobile) because I can't crawl into the car and place him there (I have bursitis in my shoulder).

So long story short I wish I had purchased a smaller seat.
I have the same seat and the exact same problem in my mazda 3. I have it on the passenger side, and only very small people can sit in the passenger. I can make a little more leg room if I get it more upright like people are saying, but then the problem is that DS's head falls forward when he's asleep.

Whatever. My Radian is on it's way.
post #35 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodheartedmama View Post
The marathon is not appropriate for a newborn or young infant. While rated from 5+ lbs, the bottom slot is too tall to fit any newborn correctly (the straps must be at or below the shoulder rear facing)

The truefit is not a booster. It will, however, get most children to an appropriate booster age, when you can buy a dedicated booster. The truefit is a fine seat for newborns.
Oops, you're right, the True Fit isn't a booster!

However, the Marathon certainly fit MY newborn just fine. I have pictures of her on the way home from the hospital and the straps are at, if not below, her shoulders. Maybe I just had an exceptionally long-waisted newborn! I plan on using the True Fit with the infant insert for #2 anyway; it's just so much cushier looking!
post #36 of 41
It's definitely an extremely rare child that fits a Marathon at birth! Even my very-long-torsoed kid who outgrew the Marathon FF just before her 3rd birthday didn't fit into the MA properly until 2 months or so.

ETA: the TF is great with NB's! I love ours and it fit my 8 lb DS fabulously. Today I had my BFF's 7lb 2-week old () in it and she was so snug and cozy!
post #37 of 41


I love my Britax seats... that said i hate the latch on the Frontier what a pain in the butt to get it tightened because of the way angled coming out of the seat.

When we have another child we will probably go with a TrueFit or Radian

post #38 of 41
Are there other seats that can be tethered RF besides Britax and Sunshine Kids now? Because all things equal for RF, I definitely prefer my Britax and definitely still think that is a worthy additional feature.

I am thinking newer more comfy looking Radians for #3 (if we are so lucky ). But I would still buy a Britax for the RF tether if it fit better RF.

It's great that there are so many great seats that can fit for longer now though. When my boys were born Britax was it.
post #39 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by SamiPolizzi View Post
I have the same seat and the exact same problem in my mazda 3. I have it on the passenger side, and only very small people can sit in the passenger. I can make a little more leg room if I get it more upright like people are saying, but then the problem is that DS's head falls forward when he's asleep.

Whatever. My Radian is on it's way.
The radian is MUCH worse for taking up front to back space than a marathon....

-Angela
post #40 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by SomedayMom View Post
Are there other seats that can be tethered RF besides Britax and Sunshine Kids now? Because all things equal for RF, I definitely prefer my Britax and definitely still think that is a worthy additional feature.
No. BUT the true fit premier has an anti-rebound bar that serves the same purpose.

-Angela
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