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Mothering › Groups › May 2013 Due Date Club › Discussions › Opinions on the "bucket" car seat

Opinions on the "bucket" car seat

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 

I am trying to make a definite decision on the bucket and am leaning (pretty heavily) toward not, but wanted to see what others had to say. I really try to not have too much gear and am not the kind of mom who will use a bucket all the time, maybe to continue a nap, or in a restaurant before kiddo is big enough to use a high chair. It was really nice with DD (someone lent me one) during the cold months, as I lived in a very cold/snowy/windy place, I also had to drive to go anywhere, so the benefits paid off (esp since it was free-ha). But this time, I am not so sure, it won't be winter, I won't drive nearly as much and is it really that hard to transfer? I guess that will depend on baby, but a good thing to try and have them get used to at least.


Anyway, what are your opinions, experiences, plans with regard to bucket car seats?

post #2 of 15

We're going to skip the bucket this time. DD was soo heavy that it was such a chore to carry her and the seat, and because it won't be winter when this babe's born, I'll just take baby out and put him/her right into a wrap to carry. I much prefer that because you actually have hands free to carry other things too!

post #3 of 15

DH and I are split on this one. He only sees babies in buckets (including our 4 month old niece) and can't imagine not having one. I see them as a short-term solution which is cumbersome and awkward. I am a weakling and have trouble carrying the 30lb tub of cat litter we get on a regular basis, and can't imagine carrying their 15lb bags of food anywhere other than hugged to my body. Considering that baby will quickly be 10 lb with an additional 10 for the bucket seat, I don't want to struggle with carrying that extended from my body and trying to squeeze it in the back seats of our small cars. Given the weight of baby, I don't see a bucket being useful for more than a few months, which makes it tough for me to justify the cost.


I get the "leave baby asleep" argument but when it's time to transition to a convertible they need to come out of the seat anyway - wouldn't it be easier to establish that routine from birth? I also get the weather issue and if we were having a winter baby I'd probably support a bucket.

I'm also opposed to the trap of carrying a babe in a bucket from the car to the restaurant, where they sit in the bucket for an hour, and then get carried back to the car. even if they are too small to sit up, there have to be other solutions which make the baby more of an active participant than "hungry luggage" to quote a friend.


I think the best argument I can make to DH is the difficulty of shopping with a baby bucket since it isn't safe to put them across the cart. If you put it in the cart, you have no room for groceries. However, if you take the kid out and put them in a carrier, it seems you could have use of both hands and shopping cart.


Of course if trusted friends were to give us one free, I would give it a shot.

post #4 of 15

We have one that we use for the first couple of months, but it doesn't go in and out of the car, it just stays in the car. I would rather wear the baby than carry a seat around, especially since I tend to have larger babies (8lb7oz & 9lb8oz at birth) and the weight of the baby and the seat together gets very heavy very quickly. I also find that they are very uncomfortable to carry anywhere as they make you either lean over to one side, or if carrying 2 handed it pushes on your belly.


Since we already have one we will use it once again for the first few months, but it will again just stay in the car like it always has before.


If you don't have one, or are not given one for free, I'd personally recommend just getting a proper car seat and carrying/wearing the baby to and from the car. (I've found it very easy to wear my babies and still eat out at the same time.)

post #5 of 15

As a mom of 4 soon to be 5 i will not skip the bucket and here is why. I like to have that baby strapped to something, he wont be lost...run off and i can keep my hands free by setting him down if need be. Now that said i LOVE to wear baby and will mostly likely wear my 2yo on my back have baby in bucket and hands on my 3 and 4 yo! And my 9yo helps out. I have a double stroller sit/stand which is nice to have as well. And i NEVER put the bucket on the seat part of carts, always in the back. And if i am someplace w/o the rest of my crew i will use my carrier and leave the bucket in the car. plus this way i dont need to buy another seat for about a year :)

post #6 of 15
With twins, I'm definitely doing buckets (already have them) as I want to be able to attach them to a double stroller for logistical ease in a lot of places. Also, since I want to do three seats across at first, at least the middle seat really benefits from being a bucket as it is hard to strap in across another kid, even my FF DD. But even without twins, I really liked the bucket for DD too for a lot of reasons. The winter one is pretty obvious, it is really nice to get the baby all bundled up inside and quickly snap them into the car, but even not in the winter I loved the bucket because it was easier to get her in the bucket seat strapped in then trying to do it in the car. It is nice in a restaurant to have a place to set the baby down for a minute or if they stay asleep, we always ended up taking DD out quickly as she wanted to be held all the time, but it was still nice for her to have a "seat" before she could sit up. Same for the pediatrician, I would put my purse and coat and her blankets and whatever else into the carseat and carry her, so it was like a shopping basket. I never had a stroller it could strap into, so I can't speak to that, it seemed like a waste of money to me with just one, especially born in the winter. And yeah, if the baby is sleeping, it is very nice to be able to carry them in and not wake them up getting them out. As for getting used to that to prepare for a convertible, if you have a bad sleeper like I did, every minute extra of sleep you can get is golden, so the bucket was worth it for that alone! And also for DD as she got bigger, she didn't wake as easily, so it wasn't as big of an issue to take her out of the carseat. In fact, once she started to actually like the car, we used it to put her to sleep often and then take her out and put her down in her crib, but that kind of stuff you never know how your child will be.

They are heavy though and that can be hard for a lot of folks, especially if you have a big baby. My DD was small (5lb4oz at birth), so I liked the bucket as she fit so much better in it than a huge convertible. Convertibles seem to be a bit better now about that now, but still they are so huge compared to a tiny baby. They are also another expense and even with some benefits they are often not worth it which I totally get. Also, I loved using my baby carrier with DD, but I still liked the bucket for some things anyway. Now I figure I will end up doing some wear one baby and tote the other in the bucket or snap both into a double stroller depending where I am. If I can get the hang of wearing two, I'll do it, but I imagine it might not be easy at first!
post #7 of 15
Originally Posted by Lynann View Post

We have one that we use for the first couple of months, but it doesn't go in and out of the car, it just stays in the car. I would rather wear the baby than carry a seat around, especially since I tend to have larger babies (8lb7oz & 9lb8oz at birth) and the weight of the baby and the seat together gets very heavy very quickly. I also find that they are very uncomfortable to carry anywhere as they make you either lean over to one side, or if carrying 2 handed it pushes on your belly.


Since we already have one we will use it once again for the first few months, but it will again just stay in the car like it always has before.


yeahthat.gif You don't HAVE to keep the baby in the car seat, you can leave the seat in the car unless there is a situation where having the seat would be appropriate/easier.


There are some logistical reasons why the bucket can be more convenient and less convenient, and a lot of it will depend on the personality of your baby.  I had a bucket with DS, and he was born in the winter, so I liked that we could bundle him all up (safely) in the warm house and then just click him into the car.  But he hated being in it and was a terrible sleeper, so he would never stay asleep during a transfer.  He was also a big baby, so it was cumbersome to carry and he grew out of it by about 5 months old (we got the smaller version).  The convertible had it's pluses and minuses as well.  It actually had a smaller frame/outline than the bucket, so it fit into our car better, which was nice.  DS seemed to like it better too, but that just may have been his age.


I have both seats, and I have been trying to figure out which one I want to use for the baby...I was thinking along the lines of using the bucket again, and just leaving it in the car so that we have more options if needed.

post #8 of 15

I had a bucket with DS and am leaning towards getting another one this time.  My main reason is I can see us switching cars fairly regularly depending on whether or not we have DSD with us.  I think it would be easier to get two bases and switch a bucket seat.


DS didn't hate the bucket; he fell asleep...if the car was moving!  Once it stopped, he was awake so like PPs mentioned, I would take him out and wear him or carry him most of the time.


I do have the bucket stroller frame already, which I liked better than the ginormous stroller.  Mostly that would be used to hold the diaper bag/purse and other stuff.


I read Baby Bargains before DS was born and kind of agreed with the assertion that buckets are made for infants; convertibles just don't seem right for a tiny baby.  I don't imagine I will have a huge baby.  DS was only 7 lb 7 oz and DH is not a huge guy.  I don't see us having a 10 pounder!


Totally my opinion, of course.  orngbiggrin.gif

post #9 of 15
We went with a bucket seat with Maddox, but that decision had more to do with the climate. He was a January baby born in Fairbanks, Alaska. I liked that I could get him in his car seat, put a blanket on him, then zip up the car seat cover all inside. It was not uncommon for the temperature to dip to 50 below 0 and the parking lots and sidewalks (not to mention the 3 flights of stairs up to my condo that were outdoors) were always covered in ice. I figured if I fell, he'd be better protected in a bucket seat than in my arms. I never got one of those stroller systems because when the terrain wasn't treacherous, I'd be wearing him. I also did not leave him in the car seat when we went grocery shopping, etc. I'm not a fan of how much time most babies spend in those things and I've read that it (along with swings and other baby gear like that) are contributing to the rise in "flat head" syndrome. Once it was nice out, the car seat just stayed in the car. It's a total PITA to lug that thing around, in my opinion. If you can get away without using one, just go with a convertible.
post #10 of 15

We've never done a bucket seat and it hasn't been an issue for us.  I am another that finds carrying the seat to be incredibly awkward and since my babies want to nurse all the time (and have reflux) being upright and against me in the carrier just makes more sense for us.  As other people mentioned it probably depends some on logistics.  If I worked and Dh needed to be able to pick baby up in a different car it would probably be nice to just lock the bucket into a base.  Since I'm home we just use one car when we are with the kids.  The only time it's really an issue for baby to be in the carrier is if I am clothes shopping when they are bitty and I need to set them somewhere-so it saves us money! ;) 

post #11 of 15

We did a bucket with DD, and that was mainly because I had no understanding of how car seats worked, and what bucket vs. convertible meant!  My DH accidentally ran over the bucket (without baby in it!!) a few months ago, so no hope of reusing it!  So, this time we asked for a spendy Britax convertible as our only present from family for new baby.  I'll see how it goes - DD is FF, and we are down to one car now, with DH staying home, so I don't think it will be such a huge issue as it would have been the first time, when we were both working and had a bucket base in both cars.

post #12 of 15
Thread Starter 

Thanks everyone! I am most decidedly a no now, just needed that little extra data to come to final resolve. My situation is just not needing a bucket. I really love hearing others' stories, it gives the whole thing so much more dimension.

post #13 of 15

Hearing all of your experiences has been very helpful for me, too. Knowing that several of you leave the bucket in the car 95% of the time is especially helpful - seems a small convertible would work just as well (I have my heart set on the Combi Coccoro since it will fit in our small cars!)

post #14 of 15

Did anyone else notice that the infant in the stock photo mothering used for this thread on the welcome page is improperly installed?

post #15 of 15

We will use one this time, but mostly for ease of transfer from vehicle to vehicle on days I work.  That and we have 2 great carseats that start at 30 lbs.... my oldest will be big enough for a booster (she's a big 6 yr old already, but keeping her in 5 pt as long as possible!!)  So having the smaller, easier to transfer seat vs buying 2 full seats works best for us. W never used the bucket much except for dining out. Mostly put baby in sling, plus I liked having the stroller empty for my bags lol  Having 2 kids that are older, I can see having the smaller seat being handy if babe isn't going into house or sling

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