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Need car seat suggestions

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hello, I was hoping someone would be able to give me some advice. I need to replace two Britax Decathalons, they expire soon. The children sitting in them are 4.5 years old (52 lbs,39 in) and 2 years (25 lbs, 32in). The 4.5 year old has not outgrown the Decathalon in height. There is a new baby coming in late August, I have two older children in Graco Turbo Boosters (one backless). I have a 2001 Honda Oddessy and a 2001 Hyundai Elantra Station Wagon.

 

The Britax seats were great, installed well in every position. The younger children have other seats I keep in the station wagon. The 4.5 year old rides in a Graco Nautilus, the 2 year old in a Recaro ProRide. I don't like the ProRide very much, it is hard to get a good recline RF and it's a challenge to get the 2 year old in and out of the seat RF. I really like the Nautilus, and I would consider replacing the 4.5 year old's seat with another, except it does not install well in the van. The 'stem' of the buckle is too long, so I can't get it much tighter. This is the case in every seating position except the 3rd row middle (I haven't tried it there). I'd prefer to keep the two youngest children in the middle row, it's easier for me, and I will travel most frequently with the two youngest (either in the van, or the station wagon). I also need to fit all 5 kids in the van, just something to keep in mind.

 

I am hesitant to order Dionos. I've heard they can be difficult to install in some vehicles and I do not have latch (I do have tether in all seating positions in the van).

 

Should I just order the Dionos? Or is there another solution? I've done childcare and put RF children in the 3rd row through the back of the van. I'm not totally opposed, but if I don't have an older child with me to sit with them, I feel like I would be stopping pretty frequently. My 2 year old isn't happy in the car.

 

 

 

The new baby will be in a Chicco KeyFit 30, though I hope I can pass down a seat to him/her when he outgrows the bucket and move the (then) 5.5 year old to a booster.

 

 

Any advice? Suggestions?

post #2 of 10

If you can't get a good install on the nautilus in your van, you won't with the radian.  The belt path is even lower.  Have you looked into a maestro for your 4.5 yo?

post #3 of 10

The Maestro has a 50# limit so it's not an option for the 4yo.  Its cousins, the SecureKid300 and SecureKid400, would be worth looking at, though.

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

Darn, I was hoping there was a chance the Radian would work. The Britax Frontier seems similar, I think the belt path will be too low. I'm considering a boulevard for the 2 year old, or a marathon?

post #5 of 10

How different is a 2004 odyssey from a 2001?

http://www.car-seat.org/showthread.php?p=166352&highlight=2001+odyssey#post166352

 

Or a 2000?

http://www.car-seat.org/showthread.php?p=1490534&highlight=odyssey#post1490534

 

2002?

http://www.car-seat.org/showthread.php?p=1209147&highlight=odyssey#post1209147

 

I wouldn't give up on the Diono... perhaps order it from a store that offers free return shipping (like Amazon)?

 

post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 

Oh...that is good news! I don't think the Odysseys are very different at all - though I don't know for sure. I do know that my 2001 looks an awful lot like the 2010. I'd imagine it is very similar to the 2000 or 2002.

 

 

Is it safe to twist the buckle stalk? I see a few people did that. How many twists is acceptable?

post #7 of 10

Three full twists (1080 degrees) of the female end.

post #8 of 10
I almost always have to twist down the buckle stalks to get reasonable installs on those low belt paths like the Radian's. Three full, 360 degree each, twists is the rule and is often a great fix!
post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by chickabiddy View Post

The Maestro has a 50# limit so it's not an option for the 4yo.  Its cousins, the SecureKid300 and SecureKid400, would be worth looking at, though.



Thank you!  I missed the weight in the OP.

post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 

Wow! Three full twists was more than I was expecting! Good to know though! I went to BRU and tried the Britax Frontier, I was able to get a really nice install so I went ahead and ordered one from Amazon (way cheaper than BRU). I set up seats for the 3 older kids in the 3rd row (tested with the Nautilus and two boosters). I asked them if they were too squished, or cramped, if they could ride like that all the time - they said it was fine! I ordered a Marathon for the 2 year old. I'm very excited for the new seats to arrive!!

 

 

Thanks so much for the information! Car-seats.org was a great help too!

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