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-   -   Recommendations (http://www.diaperswappers.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1568169)

lensesforeyes 01-25-2014 12:34 PM

I have a single mom friend who I just cry when I see her kids in the car. Her smallish five year old has been in a booster three years. She puts poofy coats on them in the car seat. Chest clip by the belly. I've talked to her lots of times, and I think she is finally willing to hear me out because she just asked me what seats she should use!

I would love to see her get a couple radians, but she's on a super tight budget. Her five year old is 40lbs and her three year old is 32lbs. I'm shocked the youngest is still in an expired five point and not a booster. Anyway, what are some inexpensive but safe options for her kids?

Please don't just say she should get pricy seats with her tax return. It's not an option. I'd love some realistic ideas for her to get her babies in safe seats!

Ola_ 01-25-2014 01:24 PM

Are they both forward facing? Tall, short? I'm a fan of the SureRide for the older one, it's comfy, tall so it will last a while, inexpensive, was a breeze for me to install.

If the younger one is not tall she could look at a Scenera though a second SureRide would last longer so it's likely a better investment. But a Scenera would fit better RFing cause it's not as tall.

jjordan 01-25-2014 01:45 PM

Re: Recommendations
 
I would go with a highback booster for the oldest, and a harnessed FF combination seat for the 3 year old. Probably a Graco Turbobooster for the 5 year old - inexpensive, readily available, fits small kids well, and converts to a backless booster when he outgrows the highback height. For the younger child I'd do an Evenflo Maestro over a Sureride because it can later be used as a booster, and I'm guessing that the mom will be more likely to be willing to buy it for that reason.

Ola_ 01-25-2014 10:06 PM

Re: Recommendations
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by jjordan (Post 17201463)
I would go with a highback booster for the oldest, and a harnessed FF combination seat for the 3 year old. Probably a Graco Turbobooster for the 5 year old - inexpensive, readily available, fits small kids well, and converts to a backless booster when he outgrows the highback height. For the younger child I'd do an Evenflo Maestro over a Sureride because it can later be used as a booster, and I'm guessing that the mom will be more likely to be willing to buy it for that reason.

I don't really see how that's any better than what she has now... Except for the harness seat not being expired, of course.

jjordan 01-26-2014 01:00 PM

Re: Recommendations
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ola_ (Post 17202278)
I don't really see how that's any better than what she has now... Except for the harness seat not being expired, of course.

The fact is that the 5 year old is going to be safer in a booster than in an improperly used 5 point harness. And honestly I would not buy a harness for a 5 year old who has been boostered for years. I would, however, buy a new booster if the one he is using is expired, secondhand, or backless.

Similarly, I would not buy a convertible seat for a 3 year old. A non-expired harnessed seat that actually fits him and will fit him for a few more years is a HUGE step up from an expired harness that is likely outgrown already, or soon will be. (And why do I think it is likely outgrown already? Because it's expired, which means it's old, and the only harnessed seats that fit big kids that are expired would have been really expensive. Hence I'm guessing it's not one of those, unless it was purchased secondhand, which is also a bad idea.)

OP, focus on proper use - no belly clips, no winter coats, tight harnesses, and no wiggling while boostered. There is no reason why this mom needs to spend more than $100-$120 on both seats to keep her kids safe. And if the 5 year old's booster is perfectly fine, then no reason to buy a new seat for him.

lensesforeyes 01-26-2014 02:15 PM

I do not agree the five year old is safe in a booster. She does NOT sit properly, and she is small for her age. She is actually nearly 5.5, and my (granted slightly tall) nearly four year old is as tall as her. She would fit in a five point for years. For example, when she sits in my children's radians, she has two strap notches above the one she fits, and her shoulders are still just a tiny bit below the ones she is on.

The three year old fits properly in her car seat. It was a very nice, expensive seat that was purchased for her five year old when she was a baby. The only problem with the seat is that it is expired. While she has not followed a lot of the car seat rules, she has never put any of her children (she also has an almost ten year old) in a car seat that was too small for them. Her biggest mistake has been to move them up too soon, and that has really mostly been because up until recently she not had a car, and would often take the bus one way and get a ride the other. It's much easier to carry a booster on the bus than a big car seat.

I spoke to her again last night, and she said she really does want to make car seats a priority. I just know she needs to be careful with her money, and would like to find good options for two five points, preferably ones that turn into high back boosters, that won't completely break the bank.

Just for the record, the three year old can still safely rear face, but I doubt she would do it with out a fight, so a convertible is not a need. The five year old is easy going and would not complain about going back to a five point.

mommyfrog 01-26-2014 05:06 PM

Re: Recommendations
 
Two Harmony Defenders would be a good choice. They are around $100 each and are harness to booster seats.

jjordan 01-26-2014 06:37 PM

Re: Recommendations
 
If she's willing to harness the 5 year old, and she has enough money for two combination seats, then it's certainly a good choice. :)

Most seats have at least a 6 year expiration. What seat is the 3 year old in, and when did it expire?

MrsAsh 01-26-2014 07:24 PM

Re: Recommendations
 
I'd go with two Graco Nautilus'.


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