The "safest" carseat? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 44 Old 07-04-2009, 01:55 PM
 
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How do you rate/gauge the safety of a carseat?
Since all seats sold in the US have to pass FMVSS testing, I narrow it down by looking at the company's track record- how do they handle recalls? Do they test beyond what is required? Are they innovative- do they try to keep up with changing demands and new technology? Based on how they've handled recalls/seats they knew were dangerous, we won't use seats made by Dorel or Evenflo. I used to buy Britax exclusively. Now we have a mixture of Britax, Recaro, Baby Trend, Sunshine Kids (2 Radian XTs that I absolutely LOVE! and a Monterey that is my favorite booster of all time) and a True Fit (that I'm very happy with).

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#32 of 44 Old 07-06-2009, 12:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I measured, measured again, then had DH measure for a final conclusion, and DS has a little less than half an inch before he reaches the top harness. However, that's still a little too close for much comfort, so we're going to buy him a new seat anyways.

I've narrowed it down to the Britax Frontier & the Graco Nautilus. If I'm going to be spending a lot of money on a new seat, I'm very interested in the harnessed seats that can be switched to boosters when the time comes.

So, my question is, if you were left with these two choices for a seat, which one would you pick and why?

For what it's worth, my son is 3 years old, 45 lbs, and 41 in tall. I don't know if that makes a difference or not.. just basically to give you a general picture that he's tall and husky.

brandi
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#33 of 44 Old 07-06-2009, 12:48 AM
 
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i REALLY wish car seat companies made it clearer that the strap height is the most important measurement to pay attention to in determining what seat to buy and how much use you'll get out of it. we also bought a marathon thinking ds1 would be in there until he was 4+. oh well!

Jean, feminist mama raising three boys: W (7), E (5) and L (2.15.13)

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#34 of 44 Old 07-06-2009, 12:51 AM
 
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Originally Posted by alegna View Post
The radian 85 won't last most kids any longer than the 65. The Truefit will actually last kids longer in nearly all cases. (higher strap heights)

Almost all seats are FAA approved

-Angela
huh what am I thinking of that's so special about it?

maybe i am thinking of the true fit?

something?



Well anyways thanks for the heads up!

Mama to expecting Babe 2
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#35 of 44 Old 07-06-2009, 01:00 AM
 
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Originally Posted by THBVsMommy View Post
I measured, measured again, then had DH measure for a final conclusion, and DS has a little less than half an inch before he reaches the top harness. However, that's still a little too close for much comfort, so we're going to buy him a new seat anyways.

I've narrowed it down to the Britax Frontier & the Graco Nautilus. If I'm going to be spending a lot of money on a new seat, I'm very interested in the harnessed seats that can be switched to boosters when the time comes.
The Frontier makes a better booster -- but boosters are less expensive than harnessed seats, so you could probably buy a Nautilus plus a good booster for the cost of the Frontier.

The biggest issue that I see with the Nautilus is the crotch. Some kids, especially bigger kids, and especially boys (ahem) seem to find the crotch strap uncomfortable. My daughter, who isn't especially skinny, had no problem with it. I know some kids much smaller than her who DID find it uncomfortable. I'd try your son in the seat. If it's comfortable for him, then it's a perfectly fine seat and up to you which one to get. If he finds the crotch strap too confining, then of course the Frontier would be a better choice.

Carseat-checking (CPST) and WAH mama to a twelve-year-old girl.
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#36 of 44 Old 07-06-2009, 01:51 AM
 
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We have a nautilus and have had no issues with it at all. My ds rode in it as a booster for 2 car rides and it worked well for him and fit him well (at 4years and 40lbs). No issues with the crotch strap, and he is a boy.

For me, I couldn't justfiy the extra cost of the frontier, and I got a steal on the nautilus (something like $117 shipped).

Happily married to my dh, mama to ds1 (01/2005), ds2 (07/2007)  and dd (07/2009).
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#37 of 44 Old 07-06-2009, 09:01 AM
 
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If you won't be able to buy a dedicated booster once he outgrows the harness of the Nauti, I'd go with the Frontier. The Nautilus is a great seat- we had to return ours because my 4yo DS (who is in the 39% for height and weight) kept complaining about the crotch buckle- it was underneath him and "pulled" on his little boy parts. We, like lots of other people, had terrible problems with head slump when he slept on a long trip- he kept waking up with his neck bent forward and was miserable. But I know people who absolutely love theirs. The Frontier has more shoulder width and definately more crotch depth, if those things are an issue for you. The Nauti is WAY easier to install, IME. And kids absolutely love the cupholders and little cubby boxes in the Nauti

Half-marathon running Mommy to 3 spunky girls and 1 sweet boy. Spending my days and nights where my kids need me most- at home with them!!

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#38 of 44 Old 07-06-2009, 10:27 AM
 
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The crotch stuff just doesn't make sense to me (and please don't read that out of context!). My daughter is 7yo and 50# and not skinny and she has plenty of room. I've seen kids much younger and smaller that don't. It really depends on body build, I guess, but it's not something as easily measured as shoulder height or poundage.

Carseat-checking (CPST) and WAH mama to a twelve-year-old girl.
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#39 of 44 Old 07-06-2009, 12:18 PM
 
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The whole frontier/nautilus seems to largely be personal preference and body-type.

My dad just got a frontier for his car for dd, I'll be interested to see how I like it (and what she thinks of it...)

-Angela
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#40 of 44 Old 07-06-2009, 02:10 PM
 
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We love our Nautlius, but it does have 2 problems for our large 2yo(35#,36"):

1. Her shoulders are a little too wide for the seat (I'm hoping as she gets taller it will be less of a problem--she's only 26mo).
2. The headrest presses her head forward a bit, making her slump when sleeping. We use a U-shaped travel pillow when she sleeps in it.

However, for the money and the ease of install, it was the best seat for us.

Mommy to DD 5-07
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#41 of 44 Old 07-15-2009, 04:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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bump for update in post #1!

brandi
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#42 of 44 Old 07-16-2009, 10:17 AM
 
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thanks for the update- the reason I like Britax seats is because they are so easy to install and adjust the straps. To me- if a car seat is installed incorrectly or not tight enough it isn't safe so having one i can do myself with minimal hassle and get right is totally worth the price.

Evergreen- Loving my girls Dylan dust.gifage8, Ava energy.gifage 4 and baby Georgia baby.gif (6/3/11).

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#43 of 44 Old 07-16-2009, 11:42 AM
 
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thanks for the update- the reason I like Britax seats is because they are so easy to install and adjust the straps. To me- if a car seat is installed incorrectly or not tight enough it isn't safe so having one i can do myself with minimal hassle and get right is totally worth the price.
FWIW in Mass. you can take your car seat to a state-approved fit station & they'll either check it or just install it correctly (and explain to you what they are doing/how they do it). It's free. I took mine to a police station in another town (had to make an appt), and they just installed it for me & showed me how to make sure it's tight enough.
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#44 of 44 Old 07-16-2009, 12:41 PM
 
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The police dept.s do that here too, but they kind of suck at it.

Evergreen- Loving my girls Dylan dust.gifage8, Ava energy.gifage 4 and baby Georgia baby.gif (6/3/11).

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