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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
can someone tell me if i should be using a locking clip w/ my britax marathon installation? i just purchased it this weekend, and will be taking it to get the installation checked as soon as possible, but i don't want to be driving around if my seat isn't installed correctly in the meantime.<br><br>
i have a 99 vw golf, so i am using the lap/shoulder belt to install. we used the locking clip w/ our snugride.<br><br>
thank you!
 

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No, you should not be using a locking clip.<br><br>
Most newer vehicles - yours included! - should have some sort of locking mechanism on the seat belt. The most common is an automatic locking retractor - ALR. With this type of belt, you can normally slowly pull the belt allllllllllllllll the way out. Then slowly feed it back in a little bit. If it's an ALR, you'll hear little ratchety clicks, and if you attempt to pull the belt back out, it will be locked.<br><br>
If your belts do that, you are golden! If they don't, you have a different type of belt. I'm not going to go through all of them - if you don't have them, just use the built in lock-off on the Marathon.<br><br>
I can not stress this enough: READ your manual, front to back. There is soooo much good info in there, and the Britax manuals actually make sense. And have cute color pics! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
thanks for the info. i will need to spend some more time with the manual. i do not have the ALR belts, but can use the lock-off thingy on the seat.<br><br>
just got confused since some sites i looked at said i should be using the locking clip too. especially if the seat is tilting (which it is).
 

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Not with a Britax Marathon - Britax specifically disallows the use of a locking clip (somewhere in the manual).<br><br>
If the seat is tipping - it's RFing, right? - your need to not tighten it as much. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> Just a smidgen less.<br><br>
But my ds2's MA is a touch tilted too. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> We have the ALR belts.
 

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A 1999 car will have switchable retractors, or lightweight locking latchplates. No locking clip needed (or allowed). If you're having tipping problems, use the built-in lockoffs and you'll be golden <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1">
 

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Why do they say not to use a locking clip? That's the only way I can get a good install with my Marathon in my van (it's a 99, too). The seat belts are the type that only lock when jerked and then immediately release, and the lock offs that Britax have included on the seat are worthless - they are nearly impossible to close, and when I do get them closed, they pop open again. I've found that this is not an uncommon problem with the seats. I'm using the locking clip from my snugride, because otherwise the seat would fall over.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>eclipse</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9897088"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Why do they say not to use a locking clip? That's the only way I can get a good install with my Marathon in my van (it's a 99, too). The seat belts are the type that only lock when jerked and then immediately release, and the lock offs that Britax have included on the seat are worthless - they are nearly impossible to close, and when I do get them closed, they pop open again. I've found that this is not an uncommon problem with the seats. I'm using the locking clip from my snugride, because otherwise the seat would fall over.</div>
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When you put the belts in the lockoff, are you spreading them out so they're more side by side than one on top of the other. That should fix the popping open problem. Besides that, a 99 will have locking seatbelts in one way or another so there's no need for a locking clip. Yes, the Snugride is a whole other story and I use locking clips for those sometimes b/c of the tipping problem.
 

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Yes, what Jennifer said. I said before, a 1999 car WILL have locking seatbelts, either switchable retractors or lightweight locking latchplates. You won't need a locking clip.
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>lisasaurus</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9894980"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">can someone tell me if i should be using a locking clip w/ my britax marathon installation? i just purchased it this weekend, and will be taking it to get the installation checked as soon as possible, but i don't want to be driving around if my seat isn't installed correctly in the meantime.<br><br>
i have a 99 vw golf, so i am using the lap/shoulder belt to install. we used the locking clip w/ our snugride.<br><br>
thank you!</div>
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When installing a CRS into a vehicle, you will need to lock it in via one of 2 main methods; by either locking the retractor (portion of your vehicle where the seatbelt webbing comes out of) or via your latchplate (commonly referred to as the buckle). Dependant on whether there are incompatibility issues, will determine which method and then how it should be done.<br>
A locking clip is used in a CRS installation in vehicles for 2 reasons: Vehicles whose seatbelt retractors only lock in an emergency stop (called an ELR-emergency locking retractor) <b>and</b> no locking latchplate, or an incompatibility (can be a problem in any car, and with any CRS) called lateral lift. Lateral lift is what can occur when a CRS is installed with the vehicle lap and shoulder belt and the retractor lock is engaged. It is not always immediately apparent and has a tendency to get worse over time (as your child gets heavier). Not locking the carseat in as tight will not solve this incompatibility. If you find your CRS is lateral lifting, it needs to be corrected. How does it look? Your car seat will begin to turn up (or flip over). It will commonly turn over onto the side opposite of where the vehicle shoulder belt is making contact. When this happens, you have 2 choices. Either try a different car seat that *may* resolve this incompatibility, or install the one with the lifting problem by NOT engaging (locking) the retractor, and instead installing it with a locking clip (this advice is general....I am not assuming everyone has a Britax; if you do have a Britax, then using a separate locking clip recommedation will not apply; Britax has built in locking clips). Using a locking clip locks the latchplate and will hold the car seat in place until the seatbelts retractor kicks in and locks/stops the car seat. Locking clips are "pre-crash" positioners. They cannot withstand crash forces so it is not uncommon to see a locking clip bent or popped right off of an installation post crash. Although it is an acceptable resolution to fix a lateral lifting situation, it should not be considered the first choice method when installing a CRS.<br>
FWIW, VW's are notorious for their (what I call) *buttons* (it's a plastic piece that sticks up and is attached to the belt) on the vehicle seat belts, which unfortunately has caused many parents and techs alike, installation difficulties (IME Britax has given me the most trouble) in part, because of the "close the locking clip opposite the belt buckle" requirement on most Britax seats. I am not saying yours will be a problem, rather I am giving you a heads up so you know what to look for. Get that installation inspected. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><a href="http://www.seatcheck.org" target="_blank">www.seatcheck.org</a>
 

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I'm pretty sure those buttons pop right off in most cases. I know I accidentally popped my mom's off when we were on vacation putting Ilana's seat in. Hope that's not a problem when her lease is up. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>thepeach80</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9915294"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I'm pretty sure those buttons pop right off in most cases. I know I accidentally popped my mom's off when we were on vacation putting Ilana's seat in. Hope that's not a problem when her lease is up. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"></div>
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After some of the wrestling I've done with some seats in VW's, I only wish those buttons had popped off. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br>
I think those buttons are to prevent the inner retractor portion from over-raveling. Kind of like a door stop. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shrug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shrug"><br>
I highly doubt the car people will notice that when your mom turns it in. They're too busy installing car seats without a CPS cert to get those sales. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll">
 

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You should only need it if your seatbelt does not lock when you pull it all the way out and let it slip back. It should lock in place.
 

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<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Mom2Madolyn</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9916717"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">You should only need it if your seatbelt does not lock when you pull it all the way out and let it slip back. It should lock in place.</div>
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Not all seatbelts lock like that though, some lock at the latchplate.
 
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