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Do carseats disintegrate on the day of expiration? - Page 3

post #41 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by vbactivist View Post
OP - No! They do not disintegrate. I would use that carseat. Good luck!
This is incorrect & will cost the child's life.

They are made of plastic & metal. Metal deteriorates over time as does the plastic. The specific type of plastic used is the same we use to make our post-operative prostheses in my family's business. My father is a past president of the American Academy of Orthotists & Prosthetists. Based on his research, he only allows our products to be used for a maximum of 1 year. Our products are thinner than carseats because people must wear them during physical therapy, but they do indeed begin to deteriorate over time. You do not want to find out during a crash that your decision to stay frugal cost your child's life

It's not just about the companies making $

It's about reducing their liability because an expired carseat does fail to protect the child properly during the violent force of even a "minor" crash.

It all comes down to CORRECT USE, which means always following the manufacturer's instructions.
post #42 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by an_aurora View Post
Nope, don't use it. An expired seat is an expired seat, no matter how long ago the date has passed. Here is a great video showing a crash test of an expired Britax seats. Expiration dates are there for a great reason
Wasn't that a strap malfunction, couldn't new straps just be ordered?
post #43 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharlla View Post
Wasn't that a strap malfunction, couldn't new straps just be ordered?
No, the "malfunction" is that the straps ripped out of the shell because the plastic couldn't withstand the crash forces.

There is nothing magical about an expiration. Is it inherently going to fall apart the NEXT day? No, probably not but we know from crash testing that over time plastic degrades. The condition, the weather, the materials, all will affect that time line.

Personally, I am totally unwilling to take the chance that my DC's seat will fail when I need it to perform to SAVE THEIR LIFE. We aren't talking about the chance a plastic plate might break, or a plastic shovel might snap when digging, or, or, or...

Car crashes are THE leading cause of death in children (and adults). Would you let your child play by the pool with out supervision because odds are they won't fall in? Will you let them play in the street because a car probably won't come? Do you bother with plug covers even though they probably won't stick a fork in the plug? No, we take all of those precautions because the *might* is too much to risk. They might die or be seriously injured. The car seat *might * might fail. That is too much of a risk to take. So I choose not to take it.
post #44 of 85
Yup, what she said ^^. The straps held just fine--they just ripped through the plastic.
post #45 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by an_aurora View Post
Their manuals say nothing about minimum shoulder height.
The manual I have for my 2004 Marathon definitely doesn't, or we wouldn't have used it for our newborn DS1. But now their website does.

The current manual for the Boulevard says (on manual page 6, pdf page 5 left panel):
Quote:
Use rear-facing only with children:
who weigh between 5 and 35 lbs. (2.3 – 15.9 kg.) and the top of the child’s head is 1” (2.5 cm.) or more below the top of the child seat shell (Fig. A) and
the harness straps are at or slightly below the child’s shoulders.
If the child cannot be secured within these requirements because the child exceeds height or weight requirements, review the forward-facing guidelines on page 7. If the child cannot be secured within these requirements because the child is too small, selection of a different child seat (such as an infant carrier) may be required.
(emphasis mine)

The section cited above does not exist in the "prior to 6/11/2007" version of the manual for either the Marathon or the Boulevard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by an_aurora View Post
ETA: I find it really weird that they list the max shoulder height as 16", but the top slot at 16.75" (MA).
The strap is supposed to be above the child's shoulder in the FF position, correct? And it's unlikely you'd be using the top slot RF I suppose.
post #46 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ironica View Post
The strap is supposed to be above the child's shoulder in the FF position, correct? And it's unlikely you'd be using the top slot RF I suppose.
I mean for FF Wouldn't the max shoulder height be 16.75?
post #47 of 85
The OP's title is ironic. I wish they did disintegrate on the day of expiration. Then there wouldn't be so many unsafe seats out there giving parents a false sense of security and failing to protect children.

I'll agree that car seat use is over-emphasized when the leading cause of death among children stops being car crashes and when the percentage of carseats being used improperly gets a bit lower than 85%.
post #48 of 85
Car seats do not go poof on their expiration dates. They expire due to 2 reasons....one, it is thought that the plastic of the shell begins to degrade over a period of time. The rate of degradation can increase for those who live in extreme climates.....hot especially. Secondly, car seats 7-10 years of age will likely not meet crash test standards of today. Technological advances in crash test studies continue to be released and the recommendations are updated accordingly.
There is debate even amongst experts as to when a car seat should be retired. Barring manufacturer directives, it is thought that somewhere in the neighborhood of 7-10 years is the time frame. Personally, I would err on the side of caution and not use a car seat after 7 years that doesn't have an expiration date (per the manufacturer), and heed the recommendation of the manufacturer if it does.
Some PP's linked to excellant information and video in this thread.
post #49 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by an_aurora View Post
I mean for FF Wouldn't the max shoulder height be 16.75?
Actually, there's a really neat color diagram in the Boulevard manual that explains why the strap height has to be higher than the shoulder height. If you look at PDF page 5/manual page 7, you'll see that even with the seat upright, the "shoulder level" lines up with a point on the seat that's slightly above the shoulder. The issue is that "shoulder level" isn't determined by plotting a line perpendicular to the seat back/torso, but parallel to the ground... which means it meets the seat back at an angle, intersecting it higher than the child's shoulder.
post #50 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ironica View Post
Actually, there's a really neat color diagram in the Boulevard manual that explains why the strap height has to be higher than the shoulder height. If you look at PDF page 5/manual page 7, you'll see that even with the seat upright, the "shoulder level" lines up with a point on the seat that's slightly above the shoulder. The issue is that "shoulder level" isn't determined by plotting a line perpendicular to the seat back/torso, but parallel to the ground... which means it meets the seat back at an angle, intersecting it higher than the child's shoulder.
I have seen that. It's pretty cool . But disappointing that you lose 3/4" of shoulder height!
post #51 of 85
Isn't an old, expired seat better than none?
post #52 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by monkaha View Post
Isn't an old, expired seat better than none?
Nope, not when there are plenty of resources out there to get free or really cheap seats.
post #53 of 85
Wow! I had no idea they expired. I knew you shouldn't buy used just in case they were in an accident but I didn't know they expired.
post #54 of 85
To complicate matters more - I was also told at a carseat safety check that you could not install three carseats across a back seat using the LATCH system. Apparently with the LATCH system each metal loop is designed to tolerate the force of only one seat in a crash. The manual of my car actually says the same thing. We have hondas and subarus....

Not sure if you are using the seat belts to restrain the seat though.
post #55 of 85
Britax video - its old, and it shows a seat that is 10+ years old.

Plastic disintegrating - can someone please provide the sceintific evidence? Do you really think they use plastic so cheap its going to distintegrate? The OP likely did not store this seat outside in the elements for the last 5 years so it was in a climate controlled area.

This was from a NY Times article quoting someone at Graco:
"That is not because of danger that the plastic is degenerating, said David Galambos, compliance and safety manager for child safety systems with Graco, a unit of Newell Rubbermaid.

"It's not as if you'll hit the expiration date and the plastic will become weak," he said. "The plastic is good for at least 10 years. But regulations and standards are constantly changing."
http://www.nytimes.com/2005/06/11/bu...erland&emc=rss

Since some will say the NY Times is not a good enough source, try www.carseat.org who explains:
"Expiration date -

In the last few years, CR manufacturers have been putting "expiration dates" on their products. This was begun in response to infant deaths from air bags. The companies realized that they had millions of products in use that said nothing about the danger to a rear-facing child. The concern became one that "best practice" and regulations change over time, so that a child restraint becomes "obsolete" and less effective than a new product, much the same way that medicines may change or become less effective after some time has passed. A current example would be with tethers--older CRs do not have them, and this is potentially a situation where a newer product will be more effective than an older one.

Taken at face value, the expiration interval (ranging from 5 to 8 years, depending on the manufacturer) is from the date of manufacture, which is what governs the labeling, certification, and other rules that apply. Whether to continue to use an "expired" CR is a judgment call, depending on the alternatives. It will work as well as before, but it is important to know what regulations and warnings may have changed and the risks involved. It is also important to take the expiration date into account when purchasing a CR that may have been manufactured several months or even a year or more before. "

Please note the absence of any explanation of plastic "going bad" as the reason for expiration dates.

The danger with the seat the OP has more likely to lie with the base it gets connected to and the chance the base could fail. That seems to be the biggest problem that infant only seats face. I would use a 5 year old seat that hardly got any wear to begin with without hesitation.

~ Maggie
post #56 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by sahm2two View Post
To complicate matters more - I was also told at a carseat safety check that you could not install three carseats across a back seat using the LATCH system. Apparently with the LATCH system each metal loop is designed to tolerate the force of only one seat in a crash. The manual of my car actually says the same thing. We have hondas and subarus....

Not sure if you are using the seat belts to restrain the seat though.
well, the LATCH cant be shared but im confused as to whether you have 3 separate LATCH systems in the back of your car. if you do, you should be able to LATCH 3 car seats. but no, you cant borrow.

Quote:
Originally Posted by m9m9m9 View Post
Britax video - its old, and it shows a seat that is 10+ years old.

Plastic disintegrating - can someone please provide the sceintific evidence? Do you really think they use plastic so cheap its going to distintegrate? The OP likely did not store this seat outside in the elements for the last 5 years so it was in a climate controlled area.

This was from a NY Times article quoting someone at Graco:
"That is not because of danger that the plastic is degenerating, said David Galambos, compliance and safety manager for child safety systems with Graco, a unit of Newell Rubbermaid.

"It's not as if you'll hit the expiration date and the plastic will become weak," he said. "The plastic is good for at least 10 years. But regulations and standards are constantly changing."
http://www.nytimes.com/2005/06/11/bu...erland&emc=rss

Since some will say the NY Times is not a good enough source, try www.carseat.org who explains:
"Expiration date -

In the last few years, CR manufacturers have been putting "expiration dates" on their products. This was begun in response to infant deaths from air bags. The companies realized that they had millions of products in use that said nothing about the danger to a rear-facing child. The concern became one that "best practice" and regulations change over time, so that a child restraint becomes "obsolete" and less effective than a new product, much the same way that medicines may change or become less effective after some time has passed. A current example would be with tethers--older CRs do not have them, and this is potentially a situation where a newer product will be more effective than an older one.

Taken at face value, the expiration interval (ranging from 5 to 8 years, depending on the manufacturer) is from the date of manufacture, which is what governs the labeling, certification, and other rules that apply. Whether to continue to use an "expired" CR is a judgment call, depending on the alternatives. It will work as well as before, but it is important to know what regulations and warnings may have changed and the risks involved. It is also important to take the expiration date into account when purchasing a CR that may have been manufactured several months or even a year or more before. "

Please note the absence of any explanation of plastic "going bad" as the reason for expiration dates.

The danger with the seat the OP has more likely to lie with the base it gets connected to and the chance the base could fail. That seems to be the biggest problem that infant only seats face. I would use a 5 year old seat that hardly got any wear to begin with without hesitation.

~ Maggie
im very surprised and disappointed to see that on carseatsafety.org. I do think it has a lot to do w/ the plastic and there are other resources that have been cited in this thread (i believe) to show that.
post #57 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by sahm2two View Post
To complicate matters more - I was also told at a carseat safety check that you could not install three carseats across a back seat using the LATCH system. Apparently with the LATCH system each metal loop is designed to tolerate the force of only one seat in a crash. The manual of my car actually says the same thing. We have hondas and subarus....

Not sure if you are using the seat belts to restrain the seat though.
And on top of that A LOT of vehicles do not allow for installation with LATCH on a center seat even if it's just one carseat.
There are only a few vehicles that have center LATCH.
post #58 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by m9m9m9 View Post
Britax video - its old, and it shows a seat that is 10+ years old.

Plastic disintegrating - can someone please provide the sceintific evidence? Do you really think they use plastic so cheap its going to distintegrate? The OP likely did not store this seat outside in the elements for the last 5 years so it was in a climate controlled area.

This was from a NY Times article quoting someone at Graco:
"That is not because of danger that the plastic is degenerating, said David Galambos, compliance and safety manager for child safety systems with Graco, a unit of Newell Rubbermaid.

"It's not as if you'll hit the expiration date and the plastic will become weak," he said. "The plastic is good for at least 10 years. But regulations and standards are constantly changing."
http://www.nytimes.com/2005/06/11/bu...erland&emc=rss

Since some will say the NY Times is not a good enough source, try www.carseat.org who explains:
"Expiration date -

In the last few years, CR manufacturers have been putting "expiration dates" on their products. This was begun in response to infant deaths from air bags. The companies realized that they had millions of products in use that said nothing about the danger to a rear-facing child. The concern became one that "best practice" and regulations change over time, so that a child restraint becomes "obsolete" and less effective than a new product, much the same way that medicines may change or become less effective after some time has passed. A current example would be with tethers--older CRs do not have them, and this is potentially a situation where a newer product will be more effective than an older one.

Taken at face value, the expiration interval (ranging from 5 to 8 years, depending on the manufacturer) is from the date of manufacture, which is what governs the labeling, certification, and other rules that apply. Whether to continue to use an "expired" CR is a judgment call, depending on the alternatives. It will work as well as before, but it is important to know what regulations and warnings may have changed and the risks involved. It is also important to take the expiration date into account when purchasing a CR that may have been manufactured several months or even a year or more before. "

Please note the absence of any explanation of plastic "going bad" as the reason for expiration dates.

The danger with the seat the OP has more likely to lie with the base it gets connected to and the chance the base could fail. That seems to be the biggest problem that infant only seats face. I would use a 5 year old seat that hardly got any wear to begin with without hesitation.

~ Maggie
Graco has since retracted the statement and are adamant that you MUST discontinue use of the CR after the stamped date.
post #59 of 85
Most (maybe all?) Subarus do not allow center LATCH.
post #60 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by an_aurora View Post
Graco has since retracted the statement and are adamant that you MUST discontinue use of the CR after the stamped date.
thank goodness. what a crazy statement (IRT what i have read).
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