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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
<p>Hi everyone,</p>
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<p>Yikes, I got the car seat for the new baby (Graco Snug Ride - the old infant seat was too old to use this time) and it won't fit in the back with my older kids!  I have a Subaru Forrester, I think it's an '05 I bought it used. It's a decent sized car. My almost 6.5 year old has a backless booster and I think he's 50 inches and over 50 lb (tall for his age; my 3.5 year old is in a forward facing 5 point convertible harness type (I think it's a Britax, unsure of the model). My older son buckles himself and with her car seat in the middle his belt would actually be underneath her base. I did some on line research and there is a Sunshine Radian car seat that is evidently the most narrow (and it costs $250+, yikes) but for under 40 lb it's supposed to be rear-facing? My 3.5 year old has been forward facing for so long...and we don't have t.v. but when we go on roadtrips (and we go on a lot in warmer weather to visit family) I put the DVD player up for them and let them watch to help pass the time. So I don't think he'd be too thrilled about rear-facing!  I don't think the infant car seats come more narrow, plus the Snug Ride has really good safety ratings...</p>
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<p>Yikes!  I did find a local shop (with the help of my MW's office, bless them) that carries the Radian seats and will let me bring them out to the car and see what fits. But oh my I can't afford to buy a new car right now....I never dreamnt that I'd have this problem. I actually have a friend at the dealership who sold me the car who said that people do fit three car seats in the back of this model, so I did ask him today which car seats...I have yet to hear back but he doesn't have kids so he may not be super focused on those details. </p>
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<p>Has anyone tackled a similar problem successfully? I did look at our state laws and kids here have to be in some kind of car seat until they are at least 8 and meet weight & height requirements. There is something on the market called a travel safety vest which looks good for an emergency but I don't even think it'd be legal here.</p>
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<p>Thanks in advance,</p>
<p>Stella</p>
 

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<p>I think you can rearface up to 40 lbs, but don't have to?  I would see what the suggestion for forward facing starts at on the radian.  You should also look online, because if you're willing to go with the radians that only go up to 65 pounds instead of 80 pounds, you can get one for around $170.  They go all the way down to 5 or 6 pounds as well, so if you aren't set on an infant carrier seat (or could return the one you bought) you might be able to get 2 Radians in and solve it that way.  or you could also look for a narrower infant seat.  I've heard the Chicco Key Fit is fairly narrow.  Do a little internet research, I think you'll be able to figure it out without a new car.  We have a smaller car too, and we're dealing with the same issue.</p>
 

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<p>Yup, I just checked and you can forward face starting at 20 pounds, at least in one of the Radians (you'll want to see what the minimum is in the specific seat you want to buy.) So more than likely, your son could forward face in it.</p>
 

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<p>Moving to family safety</p>
 

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<p>Is it possible that something as simple as a seat belt extender would fix the problem with the booster?</p>
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<div class="quote-block">My older son buckles himself and with her car seat in the middle his belt would actually be underneath her base.</div>
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<p>I would get a narrower infant seat for your middle child, like a radian, or even the maestro is narrower than a britax (britax seats take up a lot of room!).  And get another radian or something else narrow for the new baby, the snugride is pretty wide.  </p>
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<p>For your oldest, you can leave the booster buckled and have him slide under the belt to get in/out, kind of a pain but easier than buckling if its a tight fit.  Or get a RSTV (I would use it in the center because there is no side impact protection), but those are more anoying to use for day-to-day use. </p>
 

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<p>I'd return the Snug Ride for starters and try a narrower infant seat, like the Baby Trend Flex Loc or maybe the Combi Shuttle.  If that doesn't give you enough space, then I'd swap the Britax for a Radian as well.  What booster is your oldest in?  Some are wider than others.  </p>
 

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<p>Our 2001 RAV4 has a narrow backseat with oddly-spaced seat belts.  DD is 5 and not quite 50 pounds, and not terribly tall, but her tall torso is just about maxed out for our Radian XLT whatever we bought when we found out about #3.  We had a car seat guy cram 3 Radians back there, and they're right to the edge of the back seat, but they fit.  He didn't recommend a Radian for the baby - a Combi or a Chicco or something with a 17" base. </p>
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<p>For us, spending the $$ on new car seats was a lot cheaper than the prospect of a new car, which is not possible for us right now.  It's really disappointing, though, that we bought the one that went up to 80 pounds, and DD is on the verge of outgrowing it at 40-something pounds.  I'd love to have her in a harnessed booster, but I doubt we could fit one back there.</p>
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<p>Before, we had Britax Boulevards, which the kids loved and were very comfortable.  The Radians are not as comfortable for them, and I hate their seatbelt latches and tightening the harness.  The Britax seats, IMO, are much better designed, but there's no way we could fit a baby seat in the back with the 2 Boulevards.  It aggravates me that we spent $600 on car seats no body likes, but it's cheaper than a new car.  I do feel like they're safe, though, and that's what's important.</p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Lyss</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1290154/3-car-seats-in-the-back-won-t-fit#post_16192602"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border-bottom:0px solid;border-left:0px solid;border-top:0px solid;border-right:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>Our 2001 RAV4 has a narrow backseat with oddly-spaced seat belts.  DD is 5 and not quite 50 pounds, and not terribly tall, but her tall torso is just about maxed out for our Radian XLT whatever we bought when we found out about #3.  We had a car seat guy cram 3 Radians back there, and they're right to the edge of the back seat, but they fit.  He didn't recommend a Radian for the baby - a Combi or a Chicco or something with a 17" base. </p>
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<p>For us, spending the $$ on new car seats was a lot cheaper than the prospect of a new car, which is not possible for us right now.  It's really disappointing, though, that we bought the one that went up to 80 pounds, and DD is on the verge of outgrowing it at 40-something pounds.  I'd love to have her in a harnessed booster, but I doubt we could fit one back there.</p>
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<p>Before, we had Britax Boulevards, which the kids loved and were very comfortable.  The Radians are not as comfortable for them, and I hate their seatbelt latches and tightening the harness.  The Britax seats, IMO, are much better designed, but there's no way we could fit a baby seat in the back with the 2 Boulevards.  It aggravates me that we spent $600 on car seats no body likes, but it's cheaper than a new car.  I do feel like they're safe, though, and that's what's important.</p>
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Sorry, Hijaking here!  WOW for you cramming 3 seats back there, lol.  A friend has that same model and oh my goodness... that was not fun! </p>
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<p>I was wondering how old and how tall your DD is.  Just an FYI, the seat is outgrown forward facing when the tops of their ears reach the top of the shell.  Your DD might have time left in it.  I really don't think that there IS another seat that you can cram back there with a footprint as small as the radian's.</p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
<p>Hi Everyone,</p>
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<p>Thanks for weighing in and all the ideas. I went to a local store and they were super helpful. I brought all my car seats with me and they let me try theirs.  It took about two hours in 5 degree weather, but I finally got it figured out. I kept the snug ride (back seat, passenger side, no side air bags, using LATCH), then in the middle I put a safety first convertible booster, which is a cool soft frame construction seat with a top tether for my oldest (he'll be in the booster soon, but for now he's in the 5 point harness), using the seat belt anchor, not LATCH, and then for my younger son, on behind my seat, also using LATCH in the Sunshine Radian which I love as it's super narrow yet feels really solid & safe.  The buckles are also relatively easy to do and undo. So a tight squeeze, but worth it, and hey, two new car seats is still a lot less than one new car!!!! I hope this info may help someone else...good luck!</p>
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<p>Stella</p>
 

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<p><br>
It was like 100 degrees outside when them and the car seat installer weighed easily 250-300 pounds.  He was crammed in our backseat moving the seats and jerking the belts around.  We tipped him well.  It took all three of us to do it, too.  It's not ideal, but a new car is not a choice right now.  Maybe by the time the baby outgrows the bucket. </p>
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<p>Thanks so much for your tip - DD's head is just at the top of the back of the carseat, but we can't move the head-protector thing up any further.  Or the harness.  If she could just stay in it for another inch or two, we'd be golden.  Thanks!</p>
<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>WindyCityMom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1290154/3-car-seats-in-the-back-won-t-fit#post_16194332"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><br><br><br><p>I was wondering how old and how tall your DD is.  Just an FYI, the seat is outgrown forward facing when the tops of their ears reach the top of the shell.  Your DD might have time left in it.  I really don't think that there IS another seat that you can cram back there with a footprint as small as the radian's.</p>
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