or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Natural Living › Family Safety › Britax vs Sunshine Kids or ?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Britax vs Sunshine Kids or ?

post #1 of 61
Thread Starter 
Hello,

today the search seems out of commission, so I'm posting first. I'm pretty clueless about car seats beyond infant seats. DS will soon need a forward facing one as he will be one yo.

I'd like to hear your pros and cons on either brands and which models you like and why. Of course, if neither, then suggest something else which is fine

TIA
post #2 of 61
I'm pretty sure others will chime in on this but just to let you know, you don't HAVE to turn your DS when he turns one.

Rear-facing is still a safer position for our LO's to be in so a lot of us have chosen to RF our LO's up to the seat limits (30-35lb depending on which seat).

To address your q, we have a Sunshine Kids Radian80 for my 2y.o. (still rear-facing) and so far we've been pretty happy with it.

He seems comfortable in it and looks like lots of room for growth.

The only issues I have heard of when it comes to this seat is that depending on which car you install it in, there could be some compatibility problems. In our 2003 Subaru Impreza Wagon, we had to employ a few tricks in order to get a tight install.

If you are installing using LATCH though, it's very easy.

I don't know much about Britaxes since we don't own one but heard very good reviews about it as well.
post #3 of 61
Thread Starter 
I forgot about the car fit... thanks for the reminder. I have a Subaru Forester and currently a Chicco Keyfit 30 and using LATCH

I didn't know you could keep the child rear-facing. We will still need a new car seat for weight constraints.

Thanks again. I have much to learn.
post #4 of 61
Yes, rear-facing is four times safer than FF, so I would encourage you to continue rear-facing until he reaches the limits of his seat.

The Radian is a great seat, but I have heard of some install problems in Subuarus once you do you have him FF.

I would suggest the Britax Marathon or Boulevard, Recaro Como or Signo, Evenflo Triumph Advance, or Learning Curve/Compass True Fit. These are all seats with high RF weight limits (35 pounds) as well as tall top slots and high forward facing weight limits. They would all last you a good long time. If possible, try going to a Babies-R-Us, USA Baby, or specialty baby store if you have one near you and try your DS in the seats to see which one you prefer Some stores will let you take the seat out to your car to see how it installs as well.
post #5 of 61
Thread Starter 
I like the idea of going to the store and see how DS likes it.

Checking the link in your sig while I'm at it

Thanks!

Keep it coming ladies ...
post #6 of 61
One thing about the LATCH in Subarus though is that you cannot install in the middle position using LATCH.

I only mention this because we did it for more than a year (I read the car manual but I must've missed it) and despite having been in 2 carseat checks, no one spotted that huge blunder . It was only after re-reading my car manual a year and a half later did I realize that we could't do it. I don't know if it's a common mistake or I was just really dull.

So just a heads up.
post #7 of 61
Thread Starter 
My car manual says that "In this seating position, you should use only a child restraint system that has a bottom base that fits snugly against the contours of the seat cushion and can be securely retained using the seatbelt."

The Keyfit 30 is nice and snug. I wonder if it depends on the year the car was made.
post #8 of 61
My top three choices, in order, would be:

boulevard
marathon
radian

-Angela
post #9 of 61
We have 99 Subaru Legacy Outback, so no Latch and no way, no how can get our Radian in FF. I haven't tried it RF though.

I have had great success with our Marathon though, both RF and FF outboard. Rock solid.
post #10 of 61
DS is in a Marathon and I love that carseat. DD is currently in a Radian but it is quite long rear facing and only fits in the middle position on our car. The size plus the issue the PP mentioned about Radians and Suburus might not make it a great choice for you (overall I am happy with it though).
Anyway, I love the Marathon and ds seems very comfortable in it. He is forward facing now but rear faced in it until he was 2 years 3 months. It is easy to install and very plush. I have also heard good things about the Evenflo Triumph Advance.
post #11 of 61
I'm debating between the two, as well. I know I have a few threads about it if you search for them.

DC should not turn FF yet. It's safest to keep them RF until they outgrow the upper weight limits of the seat (33 or 35 lbs), or the top of their head is within an inch of the top of the shell of the seat.
post #12 of 61
I already have a Boulevard (you can see a pic of my 20 month old in it here)

And was debating on whether to get another Boulevard or a Radian for number two. The main reason I chose the Radian is because it fits newborns much better than Britax convertible seats.

Other pros/cons:

-The Boulevard has built-in lock-offs for when you have to install in vehicles without locking belts, or if you get too much tilt when installing your seat. The Radian, in this situation, would need to use a locking clip (total PITA, lol)
-The Boulevard has infinitely adjustable harness height--just a knob that can roll them up and down, even with your child IN the seat... however, the Radian's top harness slot is 1" higher than in the Boulevard, and since most kids outgrow seats by height before weight (once they are forward-facing, anyway) this can be a big perk. The Radian is also the only seat on the market that allows you to harness your child AFTER they are above the top shoulder strap slots, although this is very highly debated and most don't do it (generally, for forward facing, straps must be at or ABOVE shoulders).
-The Boulevard is insanely easy to install everywhere I've put it, ever, period (and we've test-driven about 18 vehicles lately, so it's gotten around!). I've done seat-belt and LATCH, both are a breeze. The Radian, I hear, CAN have install issues. However, the Radian is thinner width-wise than the Boulevard (although it DOES take up an obscene amt of room rear-facing, lol)
-The Boulevard is deep, the Radian isn't. Meaning, you'll get more air flow to the rear-facing child in the Radian, but you'll also lose more sippy cups and pacis over the sides.

HTH!!
post #13 of 61
Thread Starter 
I just realize that I am premature in looking for a car seat to replace my Key Fit 30 Apparently, on average, boys reach 30lb around 30 months. So we'll be RF until we have to switch.

I'm in no way near that 30 lb mark or 30 in and who knows what will be available then.

Meanwhile, I started to like the Boulevard and the Regent... it might not be worse it then to get a Boulevard for an extra 3 lb of RF considering the upper weight limit which is much lower. Also, DH is tall, so who know what will happen with DS

I learned a LOT today. If there is anything else anyone would like to add, I'll stay tuned into this thread for a couple more days.

Thank you!
post #14 of 61
Newer Boulevards have a top RF weight of 35 lbs. That five pounds might get you a year or more of RF time; DS1 was 29 pounds at one year, but was 33 pounds at 3 years.
post #15 of 61
And, your child is much more likely to outgrow the Keyfit by height before 30 pounds. The seat is outgrown when there is less than one inch of shell above the head.
post #16 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ironica View Post
Newer Boulevards have a top RF weight of 35 lbs. That five pounds might get you a year or more of RF time; DS1 was 29 pounds at one year, but was 33 pounds at 3 years.
Really? Is that retroactive in any way? We have a Boulevard...I think the manufacture date is Oct 2007 but I'd have to double check on that...we got it during one of the big Britax sales. Not that it really matters I guess since dd is 11 mos old and barely 15 lbs LOL.
post #17 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shelsi View Post
Really? Is that retroactive in any way? We have a Boulevard...I think the manufacture date is Oct 2007 but I'd have to double check on that...we got it during one of the big Britax sales. Not that it really matters I guess since dd is 11 mos old and barely 15 lbs LOL.
Nope. Sadly not retroactive.

-Angela
post #18 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shelsi View Post
Really? Is that retroactive in any way? We have a Boulevard...I think the manufacture date is Oct 2007 but I'd have to double check on that...we got it during one of the big Britax sales. Not that it really matters I guess since dd is 11 mos old and barely 15 lbs LOL.
As Angela said, not retroactive. February 2008 and newer seats only, IIRC.

And... my 2-month-old is 15 lbs. ;-) Enjoy your tiny baby!
post #19 of 61
DS has been over 35 lbs since he was 14 months old! I have both my almost 2 year old and my 5 year old in Britax Marathons. LOVE THEM! DD is only 42 pounds, but she is almost too tall for her Marathon, so we are looking at the new Britax Frontier, I think. It is a FF harness that converts to a belt positioning booster. I figure that will make the $280 worth it!
post #20 of 61
Does anyone know if a Radian will fit RF in a Honda Civic in the center position? If so, will it interfere with the driver's seat being pushed back quite far? That is my one fear in buying a Radian over a Marathon for DS. He has almost outgrown his Touriva, and I need something with a narrow base. I tried the website that lists car/carseat combos for fit, and the Radian/Civic combo were not listed.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Family Safety
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Natural Living › Family Safety › Britax vs Sunshine Kids or ?