Infant seat, carseat and a booster in a Rav4? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 17 Old 07-30-2012, 04:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello!

 

Does anyone have any experience fitting an infant bucket seat, carseat and a booster into the back of a Rav4?  I know that my current Britax seats will not work but have heard that the Sunshine/Diono seats may possibly work along with the right infant bucket seat.  I'm really hoping I can find the right fit here since buying 3 new carseats is MUCH cheaper than a new car.

 

Thanks!

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#2 of 17 Old 07-30-2012, 05:17 AM
 
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What year is the Rav4?  Unfortunately, if it's a 2008 or later, it cannot be done due to the design of the seatbelt system.


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#3 of 17 Old 07-30-2012, 08:47 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I have a 2006 sport model...I should clarify too that the carseat is FF.  I did some searches online and seem to be getting some mixed messages around the RAV4 - I also read some issues about the seatbelt system in older models that was apparently corrected in recent years, however I never read a good explanation of why this may not work.  Any experience with this?  Maybe we will have to trade in for a minivan???  Yikes!

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#4 of 17 Old 07-30-2012, 05:07 PM
 
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New Rav4s designed the seat belts so that the middle seatbelt and the driver's side seatbelt cannot be used at the same time *shakes head*.  It's essentially a four person car.   

You *should* be ok for three seat belts in a 2006; however, the Rav4 is still quite tiny side-to-side so it may take some work to get a good combination.    


Ages and sizes of the children you have, and the seats you currently own? 


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#5 of 17 Old 07-30-2012, 06:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well the infant is still in my belly LOL - so will be a newborn.  I'm quite certain my infant seat is nearing expiry and will need to be replaced irregardeless.  When baby #3 arrives DS#1 will be close to 5 years old (currently 40lbs so will likely be a couple pounds heavier by then) and he is currently in a Britax Frontier 5-point.  DS#2 will be a little over 2.5 years old (currently 28lbs) and is in a Britax Boulevard 65 CS.   Both of my boys are of average height for their age.  Its good to hear it "may" be a possibility to get 3 in (fingers crossed!).

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#6 of 17 Old 07-30-2012, 08:00 PM
 
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Hooooo boy.  It's possible, but not with those seats :-/      I'd plan on Radians for the two older ones.  Is DS2 forward or rear facing?


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#7 of 17 Old 07-31-2012, 03:59 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for all your input!!!  I was pretty certain I needed to buy all new seats...and since I still have 5 months left till #3 gets here we figured we would buy one every couple of months to break up the cost a bit!  We just turned DS2 front facing when he turned 2 years old.

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#8 of 17 Old 07-31-2012, 04:13 AM
 
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Ok, I'm fairly certain you can do this with two Radians and one very narrow infant bucket.  The buckets I would have you look at are the Chicco Keyfit 30, the Safety First Onboard Air 35, and the Graco Snugride 30 (very important it's the 30, the other Snugrides are just too wide.)    Of the three, the Snugride and the Keyfit will probably last you 9-12 months, while the Onboard Air 35 will likely give you around two years.  

 

Good job on keeping DS2 rear facing to 2!  I'm always pleased to hear that.   If you're open to it, I'd suggest turning him back rear facing, because he still fits, and the reason that rear facing is preferable (vertebrae that haven't ossified yet), doesn't become a non issue until around the 4th birthday.  You may also find that it's going to be a lot easier to puzzle three seats if he's rear facing, but at the least, I would keep him rear facing till the baby comes.     If you *do* end forward facing, remember that you must use the SafeStop that comes with the Radian as long as he's under 40 lbs.  

I would plan, once the baby comes:  DS1 forward facing in the middle seat, DS2 rear facing in the Radian on one side (you will need to buy the Angle Adjuster to use with the seat)  and baby rear facing on the other side.  You may find that the Keyfit and the Snugride are better choices than the Onboard Air because they are shorter front to back.  


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#9 of 17 Old 07-31-2012, 11:11 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh wow - thank you so much for all your input!  I really appreciate it!!  I gave a call over to a store close-by that sells baby gear and they were willing to let me try fitting their floor samples in my car to make sure they fit before I purchased any new carseats...so I'm keeping my fingers crossed.  Can't tell you how much I appreciate your help!joy.gif

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#10 of 17 Old 07-31-2012, 01:06 PM
 
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My pleasure!  Feel free to come back with questions (and I'm always tickled by bonus car seat pictures orngtongue.gif)


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#11 of 17 Old 08-04-2012, 03:53 PM
 
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Just thought I'd jump in.  I don't have a RAV4, but I have a Ford Focus, which is also on the narrow side and there's not much leg room in the back seat.

 

I have a radian in the middle seat for dd1 who is 43" tall and 40 lbs (seatbelt install) and a Chicco Keyfit 22 in the outboard passenger side.  I am able to fit a forward facing Britax Marathon in the other outboard seat when needed for her shorter friends.  I can also fit it rearfacing...just not fully reclined to 45 degrees, which will be fine for dd2 when she outgrows her chicco bucket seat.

 

I chose the Keyfit because it fit better than a Snugride...namely in how the base installed very securely (it was narrower and easier the adjust) and how there seemed to be more space between the chicco and the front passenger seat (I can ride comfortably in front) than there was with the Snugride.  Also the Chicco bucketseat carrying handle can be in the upright position while travelling in the car - a BIG factor in how well it fits behind our front seats.

 

I tried a Britax Frontier in the car, thinking it might fit beside the Radian and the Keyfit....and there was NO WAY it would fit.  The Boulevard might be a different story though?  

 

Buying a Radian is still cheaper than a Minivan!  However, safety is so many factors....and the vehicle itself is a big factor too.  Minivans and SUV's both have the issue of flying cargo and need some sort of cargo net or guard to prevent your groceries from becoming missiles in an accident.

 

Good luck :-)

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#12 of 17 Old 08-04-2012, 07:20 PM
 
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Almost all infant seats (save Evenflo and Baby Trend) can have the handle in the upright carry position in the car :-)    The Chicco Keyfit is no smaller front to back than the Graco Snugride.  "Snugride" is the name of all Graco infant seats, but it's important to note the 22, 30, 35 (and soon to be released 40) are all very, very different seats. 


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#13 of 17 Old 08-05-2012, 09:37 AM
 
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If you're not set on having an infant bucket, a Coccoro is likely to be the most compact option you can get for your newborn. It takes up less space front to back than most infant buckets, because it installs a bit more upright and then uses an insert to recline the newborn to the correct angle. 

 

I think I would try two Radians and a Coccoro. You may want to be flexible about RF or FF for the middle child, whichever way fits better. Later, when either your oldest outgrows the Radian or the youngest outgrows the Coccoro, you can switch to two Radians and a booster (passing the oldest's Radian down to the youngest child). 


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#14 of 17 Old 08-05-2012, 04:14 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maedze View Post

Almost all infant seats (save Evenflo and Baby Trend) can have the handle in the upright carry position in the car :-)    The Chicco Keyfit is no smaller front to back than the Graco Snugride.  "Snugride" is the name of all Graco infant seats, but it's important to note the 22, 30, 35 (and soon to be released 40) are all very, very different seats. 

In Canada, the Graco snugride (22 lb limit) was longer than the Keyfit (22 lb as the 30 lb isn't available here) (I measured them).  Also the base was harder to install.  Otherwise, I would have gotten a Snugride, since they are way cheaper!  It all boils down to trying them out in your car...

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#15 of 17 Old 08-05-2012, 05:14 PM
 
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Originally Posted by dot1 View Post

In Canada, the Graco snugride (22 lb limit) was longer than the Keyfit (22 lb as the 30 lb isn't available here) (I measured them).  Also the base was harder to install.  Otherwise, I would have gotten a Snugride, since they are way cheaper!  It all boils down to trying them out in your car...

As i stated above, I was recommending the 30, not the 22 :-)   I don't recommend the 22 because it is not a narrow seat, and doesn't fit newborns as well.   


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#16 of 17 Old 08-07-2012, 10:49 PM
 
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I as well apprehend some issues about the seat belt arrangement in earlier models that was allegedly adapted in current years, about I never apprehend a acceptable account of why this may not work.


bunk beds

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#17 of 17 Old 11-25-2012, 05:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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And the verdict is in......they fit!!!!!  Phew!  We ended up going with 2 Diono Radian RXT's and a Peg Perego Primo Viaggio 30.  When we tried them at the store the Peg fit just a bit better than the Chicco did (a bit more narrow at the base).  Because we bought all 3 at once the store offered me a deal with no tax on any of them and also gave me the Diono RXT's for the price of the R100's (model lower)...so I was pretty happy.  Of course it still wasn't cheap - but better than having to buy a new car and of course, you can never put a price on safety for your babes!

 

Thanks so much for all of your advice and help Maedze...when I have a moment I'll try to snap a picture for you to see!  I was amazed at how much narrower the Dionos are as compared to the Britax...those seats are just huge!  We went with the arrangement you recommended - DS#1 in the middle, DS#2 behind the passenger side and baby #3 behind the driver side.  The only problem is that DS#1 is missing his cupholder (there is no room for one). LOL  But other than that I am very happy!  Thanks again!!!!smile.gif

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