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Carseats on a budget.

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 
I have a $300 carseat budget for two carseats. This is not likely to change, and I should buy them while we have money instead of waiting around.

I dont plan to use an infant carseat this time, but I have one if for some reason I ever need to use it. I also have a Evenflow Titan for DD that I'd like to put in DH's truck so that we arent ever switching carseats.

Both sets of grandparents have carseats, so the ease of install is not important to me. These will seldomly, if ever be use in anyone else's car.

I'd really, really like to use the same car seat for both kids. I hate change. I like for DH and I to always have the same phone, I'd buy 5 honda civics if i could never have to learn to drive another car again. I'm looking for an affordable carseat that is safe for kids 5-50ish pounds. I dont plan to rear face until 4, and right now my 2.5 year old is 22 lbs, so I'm not too concerned about them outgrowing anything. DH and I were both super small kids, and the maxium height for our entire family (both sides) is 5'7 1/2.

So, good carseats for short, small kiddos that are pretty easy to latch and can fit in a very small car that doesnt have LATCH. This is what I found. What do you think?

www.target.com/p/Eddie-Bauer-XRS-65-Convertible-Car-Seat/-/A-13742014?ref=tgt_adv_XSG10001&AFID=Froogle_df&LNM=|13742014&CPNG=baby&ci_src=14110944&ci_sku=13742014

Other reccomendations? $300 is kind of the upwards of my budget, so I have to really stay below that. I'd love a Britax, but I just can't afford it. Unless, possibly, possibly (I would really be pushing the financial limit) this one:

http://www.britaxusa.com/car-seats/roundabout
but, it doesnt seem to have any head support for infants, so Id have to buy that separately, which means spending more money.
post #2 of 29

That seat is not appropriate for a newborn, so I do not recommend it.   

Is your 2 year old *currently* rear facing?  (I hope so!)  

Something you need to consider:  You say you have a small car.  Convertibles need to be fully reclined to 45 degrees for newborns, and that is not necessarily possible in a small car, at least not without pushing the seat in front so far forward that it is not safe for the person riding in it.      

You may need to re-evaluate your plan and use an infant bucket until your newborn can sit more upright than 45 degrees.   

 

 

How about two Cosco Apt40 convertibles and a smaller infant bucket that fits newborns well?  The Graco Snugride 30 would work for you.   You could get both those convertibles plus the infant seat and still come in well under 300.  Probably around 200 or a hair over.  

post #3 of 29
Thread Starter 
post #4 of 29
Thread Starter 
I'm 5 foot tall, so my seat has to be pushed all the way up. DD was full reclined in her seat as a newborn and I was fine- cant reach the pedals if my seat were any further away smile.gif

DD is rear faced and will continue to be rear faced until at least four- hopefully to 40 lbs, which may even be after she turns four.

Can you tell me why it isnt appropriate for newborns? It says the weight minimum is 5 lbs.
post #5 of 29
Thread Starter 
Also, as I said in my OP, I do have an infant bucket if I have to use it. I have a snugride 30.
post #6 of 29

Oh gosh, reading comprehension fail.  My bad Sheepish.gif.  Good, though, because it opens up your options if you don't need to buy a bucket.  (Sounds like it might not be an issue for anyway.)

 

The seat you linked isn't good for newborns because the bottom most slot is about 9.5"....for average sized kids, that's the torso height of a 3-4 month old, and older for small kids.   Shoulder straps need to come from at or under a baby's shoulders, so it won't fit a newborn. 

 

 

Since you have more flexibility, I'd also recommend the Graco My Ride 65 and the Evenflo Triumph 65, both of which can usually be found for around 150.      That's the max of your budget, I realize, but they'd last you a goodly long time, fit well in tight spaces, fit newborns AND preschoolers well and are relatively easy to use.   

post #7 of 29
Thread Starter 
I like the myride, but I am scared of those in seat cup holders. Wouldnt they just get unbearably nasty? I can imagine all kinds of grossness living in there.
post #8 of 29

What about the Safety 1st Complete Air 65? I didn't see any cup holders on it winky.gif  It would normally be a little over your budget, except... follow me here... it is $179.99 at bed bath & beyond so... if you sign up for their email thing, you will get a printable 20% off coupon which makes $180 into $144 http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/product.asp?SKU=17826549&RN=1124& ...just a thought...

post #9 of 29
Thread Starter 
Hey, that looks pretty good and it's $152 at Walmart (evil walmart always has cheap stuff) with free shipping to the store.

But wait, does it have the same high harness that Madeeze was talking about the Edie Bauer having. Just wondering because the edie bauer is similar to the 65 sport. Basically, what is the difference between these two carseats?

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=19514415&findingMethod=rr

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Safety-1st-Complete-Air-Convertible-Car-Seat-Raspberry-Rose/15185276?ci_src=14110944&ci_sku=15185276&sourceid=1500000000000003260330&veh=cse
post #10 of 29

Yes, in fact it has a higher harness according to the chart someone linked for me here once https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AvfUm4x64h3AdFZ0c0pkbkRlV1hfeklSWmpZY0kweEE&hl=en#gid=0 (this chart has been VERY helpful for me).  

 

That chart says that the guide 65 has a lowest harness height of 9.5" and the complete air has a lowest harness height of 10.25" so you would definitely need to use the bucket seat first, for either seat. Actually, the Guide 65 seems to be the better choice all around between those two since it has the same rear-facing height limit, but a higher forward facing limit than the Complete Air, all while being far more budget-friendly oddly enough. 

 

(PS, if you have a BJ's membership, they have a nicer version of the Guide 65- the regular version rather than the "sport"- for about $75 after shipping http://www.bjs.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10201&storeId=10201&partNumber=P_147238133&sc_cid=DF&ci_src=14110944&ci_sku=147238133)

post #11 of 29

sorry, but that's really inaccurate.   stated height limits are meaningless. the guide 65 will not last anywhere near as long as the complete air.  The Complete Air will last years longer in both directions.   

post #12 of 29
Thread Starter 
Madeze,
I really appreciate your help, and I know you are cpst certified, which is why I use this board to help me figure out what carseats to get.
Why will the complete air last longer? Also, since DD is so tiny, does lasting really matter? It might be likely that I have to retire a seat before she could use it as a booster anyway. Right now, I have no qualms about her rfing to 40 lbs being an issue of her being too tall, because she's only 30 inches right now.
post #13 of 29

The Complete Air has a taller shell so it will accommodate children longer rear-facing (if you are comfortable ignoring the stated height limit of 40"), and it has a taller harness so it will accommodate children longer forward-facing.  It is possible that a tiny child would make it to booster age in the Guide65, but kids can grow unpredictably or take longer than expected to be booster-ready, so if possible, it's generally preferable to get seats with higher capacities.

post #14 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by chickabiddy View Post

The Complete Air has a taller shell so it will accommodate children longer rear-facing (if you are comfortable ignoring the stated height limit of 40"), and it has a taller harness so it will accommodate children longer forward-facing.  It is possible that a tiny child would make it to booster age in the Guide65, but kids can grow unpredictably or take longer than expected to be booster-ready, so if possible, it's generally preferable to get seats with higher capacities.

yeahthat.gif

post #15 of 29

I just want to clarify what the OP is saying.

 

It looks like you have an *extreamly* tiny 2 year old (30" & 22 lbs).  You're also due in February 2013 and have an infant seat you can use for the baby for quite some time assuming they are as tiny as your current little one--- so you don't need the second car seat for 12-24 months.  I would definately *Not* buy two car seats right now if one of them is going to be for the new baby.

 

I would buy one car seat you really like right now and put the extra money hidden away.  Have the new baby in the infant seat and your DD in the new seat.  Then, in another year, you can evaluate what you want/need right then.  Carseats are changing all the time and do expire, so buying a carseat a full year before you'll need it doesn't make a lot of sense.

post #16 of 29

This is really an excellent point.  Now that I realize the time frame involved, I agree, it would be insane to buy the baby's convertible now.   You'll lose two years of life on it.  

Quote:
Originally Posted by TiredX2 View Post

I just want to clarify what the OP is saying.

 

It looks like you have an *extreamly* tiny 2 year old (30" & 22 lbs).  You're also due in February 2013 and have an infant seat you can use for the baby for quite some time assuming they are as tiny as your current little one--- so you don't need the second car seat for 12-24 months.  I would definately *Not* buy two car seats right now if one of them is going to be for the new baby.

 

I would buy one car seat you really like right now and put the extra money hidden away.  Have the new baby in the infant seat and your DD in the new seat.  Then, in another year, you can evaluate what you want/need right then.  Carseats are changing all the time and do expire, so buying a carseat a full year before you'll need it doesn't make a lot of sense.

post #17 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adaline'sMama View Post

I like the myride, but I am scared of those in seat cup holders. Wouldnt they just get unbearably nasty? I can imagine all kinds of grossness living in there.

I have a MR and yes, that can be an issue.  I vacuum them out when I vacuum the car (which is usually once a month) and wipe out with a clorox wipe.  They don't get too nasty.  I also only give my dd water to drink in the car and I clean out any snacks after every trip, which helps.  The cupholders are actually REALLY handy with a toddler/preschooler.  I don't have to constantly reach back to hand her her water bottle and she puts it back in the holders rather than throwing it, open to leak, all over the floor of the car.

post #18 of 29
Thread Starter 
Wait, how would I be losing two years of life on a convertible? Im hoping to use it 8 months from now, not two years from now. Are you saying that none of these convertibles are appropriate for newborns? I'm looking to purchase them in August and keep it until I need it in Feburary. That is really only 6 months before the baby comes and I feel like lots of people buy carseats 6 months beforehand. I could hide money out for a new carseat, but we are dirt poor in the wintertime (my husband is a landscaper) and we would inevitably have something come up and need the cash for something else.

Edited to add: I have an infant bucket seat that I can use, but I dont want to use it. It is hard to strap in, it encourages others to let the baby sleep in the carseat (something that will not be happening at all). I want a carseat that cannot be taken in and out of the car all the time (mainly so that I dont have to argue with people all the time about why I am not going to "just bring the carseat in". Plus, I hate the clasp on my infant seat, so if Im going to use an infant seat for more than about 2 months, Im just going to have to buy a new one to keep from having to fight with that one constantly (it has some kind of problem releasing the metal piece and I have to push the red button and really wiggle to get it out.)
Edited by Adaline'sMama - 6/15/12 at 6:42am
post #19 of 29
Thread Starter 
Dahlia,
Thanks! I like the myride, and I keep wipes in my trunk anyway, so that might be the one for me! DD definitely makes me reach back and get her water bottle.
post #20 of 29

I mentioned a bunch of seats that are compatible with newborns.     You can't use the Guide 65 or the Complete Air with newborns though.  

 

And even with the seat jacked all the way up in a Civic, you may just not be able to use those convertibles at a 45 degree angle.  

 

8 months from now is not so bad, but keep in mind any seat you buy now will likely have several months on it all ready, so you're still shaving a year of life off the seat if you buy it now. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adaline'sMama View Post

Wait, how would I be losing two years of life on a convertible? Im hoping to use it 8 months from now, not two years from now. Are you saying that none of these convertibles are appropriate for newborns? I'm looking to purchase them in August and keep it until I need it in Feburary. That is really only 6 months before the baby comes and I feel like lots of people buy carseats 6 months beforehand. I could hide money out for a new carseat, but we are dirt poor in the wintertime (my husband is a landscaper) and we would inevitably have something come up and need the cash for something else.
Edited to add: I have an infant bucket seat that I can use, but I dont want to use it. It is hard to strap in, it encourages others to let the baby sleep in the carseat (something that will not be happening at all). I want a carseat that cannot be taken in and out of the car all the time (mainly so that I dont have to argue with people all the time about why I am not going to "just bring the carseat in". Plus, I hate the clasp on my infant seat, so if Im going to use an infant seat for more than about 2 months, Im just going to have to buy a new one to keep from having to fight with that one constantly (it has some kind of problem releasing the metal piece and I have to push the red button and really wiggle to get it out.)
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