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Carseat hunting.... Want to Pull out My Hair!!!! Advice MUCH needed!


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  #1  
September 10th, 2011, 10:11 PM
HubbysSweetheart's Avatar Little Jo married Laurie!
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Arisona
Posts: 656
Ok, all the baby gear out there is new to me, so I am having to research EVERYTHING and start from scratch. Most things haven't been that bad and I have been able to narrow it down to what we want EXCEPT.......

The stupid Carseat!!!!


We went to several baby stores while we were in the city.... our town's Walmart has- not kidding- 2 that you can see/choose from....to see which ones we liked. We found most of the 'cutesy' ones.. i.e. most of the ones with a pretty pattern... to just feel cheap, hard, and uncomfortable with no padding. Some brands we Did like were the Baby Trend, Graco Snugride 32/35 but our favorite was the Safety 1st OnBoard Air 35.

So, I get home and read online that the baby trend carseat is fairly small and gets outgrown easily, considering the cost of carseats and the fact we are starting out having to buy everything the longer between another expensive purchase the better. Also, I would hate to have to start waking up my 4 mo old each time I haul them in or out of the car.

THEN I read online that the Safety 1st/Graco 35's give some problems fitting in your mid-sized SUV's..... we aren't talking a Tracker or Rav here, but a 4Runner, Xtera, ect. What? Why would they make carseats that won't fit in your most driven sized vehicle out there?!

So I decided to look at dementions and measure our car for a starting point (we want to get an SUV before baby) The dementions only further confused me. Sites are giving different dementions for the same caseat and Amazon is saying that the Snugride 32 (which doesn't have complaints with fitting in the reveiws) measures 1 1/2 inches BIGGER than the Snugride 35 (Which has several people saying they wished they could use the carseat but can't cause it won't fit in their backseat.)


SOOOOOO, calling all experienced Moms!!!!

What carseat do you use? (looking for a nice padded comfy feeling one)

When/age of month, did you have to switch to a bigger carseat? (Considering my and my husbands build, our kid will probably reach the length limit before the weight.)

What vehicle do you/did you own and what room did it have for the carseat?

Do any of you use/have used a 35 carseat? Or a 32? By the way, for the knew moms, the 35 fits up to 35lbs or and a 32 fits a 32 lbs/32 in long..... I didn't know this!
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  #2  
September 10th, 2011, 10:31 PM
jessicab25's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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lurking but we had a baby trend flex loc and my DS stayed in it until he was 11months. I only took him out to give the seat to my SIL for my nephew. I bought another one for this baby. i like their size the fact that you don't have to take the straps out to resize when baby grows. loved it. i had a graco with my girls and hated it compared to the BT.
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  #3  
September 10th, 2011, 11:57 PM
isaroo's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Arizona
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I'm a first time mom too. My mom gave me a book called Baby Bargains. It has been really helpful because they rate everything you could possibly want for your baby. I guess my mom saw it on Oprah and gives a copy to everyone she knows having a baby.

To be honest, it really has taken the edge off for me. Walking into some of the baby super stores can be really overwhelming, and this way I know I have an exert in my corner, and I don't feel like I am going to second guess myself after I purchase.
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  #4  
September 11th, 2011, 04:08 AM
hoping and waiting's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 2,860
We had an Evenflo infant carseat for DD and I didn't really like it. And then a Safety 1st convertible and don't love it either. I don't like the the Evenflo becuase it just ended up feeling like a cheap seat compared to the others I have seen. And with the Safety 1st, my daughter is sometimes able to get her arms through the straps. Doesn't seem to safe. And the Safety 1st doesn't have adequate headrest. I want to trade in my Evenflo for a Chicco. This feels so much more sturdy and comfy. My friends baby always looked very cozy and safe in hers. And then I'm not sure about a convertible yet. But, I also like having the two stages of seats because I don't like to wear the baby all the time. I really enjoyed being able to move her into her stroller or shopping cart while still in the carseat when she was very little. I had to move DD into the convertible when she was about 10 months because she was just so tall.

Last edited by hoping and waiting; September 11th, 2011 at 04:10 AM.
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  #5  
September 11th, 2011, 04:48 AM
HonestMamma's Avatar Bish!
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Cyberspace, the Interwebz
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WIth my first two I used a Safety 1st carseat. However, we have to have slimline carseats now that I have to fit 3 across, so we are going with Sunshine Kids.

The top of the line is Britax, but you are going to be paying for that name. With our kids, we use an infant car seat until they are about 6 months old (or when they can sit up unassisted) and then we switch them to a rear facing convertable car seat (which will switch to forward facing) until they are 4. Then we purchase booster seats for them.
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  #6  
September 11th, 2011, 07:11 AM
jensma's Avatar Katie: mommy to Ty & Em
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Texas
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we actually bought our carseat/travel system b/c we got a STEAL of a deal...which made it impossible to pass up. It is an evenflo discovery and honestly i haven't had any issues with it. It goes up to 29.5" and 20#. It is lighter and doesn't feel as 'heavy" as the graco seats, but i feel perfectly safe putting tyler in it. The handle is a strange shape too but really helps when you carry it. I had no idea what i wanted but couldn't pass up a brand new stroller/infant seat for $60. So we'll be using it again. Chicco seats are awesome if you have the money, another option is to forgo the infant seat and get a convertible seat from the start, but idk if i could do that. i loved taking him out of the car and popping him on the stroller.

We just had to go through this again buying a convertible seat and in the end money won out! I wanted a safetyfirst complete air 65, but i got a britax roundabout for half the price. You can always check out the car seat safety board here on JM, those girls are awesome!
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  #7  
September 11th, 2011, 08:57 AM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Northern, VA
Posts: 2,627
I have a small car (Toyota yaris) and have a snugride 32. While it's not ideal for long trips, it works. We do have to have one seat pretty far forward but we make it work. We bought a convertible seat around 7 months but I do still use the snugride and he's almost 15 months. My best advice is once you get the vehicle you want, go to babies r us and test seats in the vehicle before you buy.
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  #8  
September 11th, 2011, 09:06 AM
Capns Girl's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Location: United States
Posts: 1,693
I have a Chicco Keyfit that I got when I was preggo with dd and I LOVE it. It was well worth the money I spent on it (I found it on sell for $150) It has a newborn insert that makes it so the baby doesn't drown in the carseat plus a seperate head rest that can be used almost the entire life of the carseat. (It's not supposed to be used when the straps are in their highest setting) DD was in this carseat until she was 17 months old, partly because I didn't see the point of changing her out while she was still fitting. My daughter is small for her age, didn't pass the 5% bracket until her 2yr appt. When I went carseat shopping I already figured I wanted this carseat but while at BRU I checked out other ones as well and this one had at least twice as much padding as most of the other ones. One of the main complaints about this carseat is that the fabric isn't very breathable and that the baby sweats alot. I didn't have this problem, but I live in a drier climate and assume that thats why. (It still gets super hot here but there isn't much humidity) It gets awesome safety ratings, is very easy to install correctly in your car. Its also easy to wash and hasn't lost any of its vibrancy with its several washings. And its easy to wipe out if your baby has a blow out and you aren't at home where you can wash it out. It barely fits in our car (04' Suzuki Forenza) and would only fit in the middle seat. It fits well in our truck (06' Toyota Tacoma 4dr), best in the middle but fits on either side ok too. Overall I would purchase this carseat again in a heartbeat...even if I had to pay more for it. If Chicco made a convertable carseat that sold in the US I wouldn't hesitate to try it out too.
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  #9  
September 11th, 2011, 10:58 AM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 0
I highly recommend the Chicco Keyfit 30. Used it with DS and be using it with this one. Excellent safety reviews, an it's a nice quality, comfy seat! A little more expensive but so worth it!
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  #10  
September 11th, 2011, 03:17 PM
justjaQ's Avatar Platinum Super Mommy
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What carseat do you use? (looking for a nice padded comfy feeling one)- i don't know what it is, i wanna say graco, but maybe that's cos u said it. it's my son's half-sister's; she's 2 yrs older and it came with a stroller.

When/age of month, did you have to switch to a bigger carseat? (Considering my and my husbands build, our kid will probably reach the length limit before the weight.)-- we just switched when the straps got too tight, which i think was around a year? nick is in a forward facing carseat/highback booster/whatever. he's 19 months and has been in it for a while.

What vehicle do you/did you own and what room did it have for the carseat? i use multiple cars, and have 3 kids already who need a carseat and boosters-- 3/4 of the cars i drive can fit all three, but i''m not sure what you're asking here.

Do any of you use/have used a 35 carseat? Or a 32? By the way, for the knew moms, the 35 fits up to 35lbs or and a 32 fits a 32 lbs/32 in long..... I didn't know this!-- no idea what that is, sorry
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  #11  
September 11th, 2011, 03:50 PM
jennybunny82's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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We will be getting the Chicco Keyfit 30 with this baby. The first time we had a Graco that came with our travel system and I'm pretty sure it only went up to 22+ lbs. I'm pretty much a carseat safety freak so my son is 18 1/2 months and still rear facing in a Graco MyRide 65 (also a GREAT convertible carseat if you didn't want the bucket seat.) It rear faces up to 40 lbs.

This is a great board on JM about car seats... These ladies know almost everything and if they don't know... they will find out. Car Seat Safety - JustMommies Message Boards
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  #12  
September 11th, 2011, 04:28 PM
Alison79's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I don't use an infant seat, we do the convertible ones but I have several friends that have raved about their Chicco Keyfit seats.
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  #13  
September 11th, 2011, 08:28 PM
Mrs.Mikey's Avatar Kay- mom of Bryson
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Michigan
Posts: 761
We have the Safety 1st Onboard Air 35 and LOVE it! B just switched to a convertible at 10.5 months. I drive a Ford Fusion and it fit just fine behind my seat, although I am a little short. It would fit behind DH also but he has to move his seat up quite a bit. I don't see how it wouldn't fit in an SUV... it is super padded and B always fell asleep in it so I take that to mean he is comfy, and I really like the side air. Hope this helps, and ditto the the others who suggested the car seat safety board here, they are a huge help!!
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  #14  
September 11th, 2011, 09:17 PM
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I have used Evenflo, Graco, Peg Perego and now Britax.

Evenflo, was a major piece of crap. Everything broke on it and it looked and felt cheap. We tossed it and went with the Graco.

Graco was a nice carseat. It felt sturdy, looked great and love the ease of use.

Peg Perego (Baby #2) was a pricey carseat and although it had high ratings, it was HEAVY as heck to lift and carry around and for that alone I hated it. We were 'done' having babies after DS, so we sold it with the stroller.

Baby #3 - Surprise...we need another carseat. This time around we went with the Britax infant carseat. It has great ratings and not as heavy as the Peg....I have not used it though so I don't have much to say about it yet.

My advice, is shop around. REALLY make sure it is what you want before you buy it. Don't buy a seat just because it is the cheapest. Although cheap doesn't mean 'bad', it might end up not working for you and your lifestyle. Just try some out, play with them...lift them and love it before you buy it!
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  #15  
September 11th, 2011, 11:36 PM
everafter's Avatar Super Mommy
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 984
I used to LOVE Graco and only got Graco strollers and car seats...

Well, I went to Buy Buy Baby and saw the Chicco Cortina Keyfit 30.....I compared the Graco Snugride and the Keyfit 30 and have to say the Keyfit is soooooo nice and padded, that's gotta be comfy....

So the Keyfit 30 is definitely what I'm getting !!!!!!

Can't tell you much about demensions and fit, but it's comfy for sure !!!
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  #16  
September 12th, 2011, 09:34 AM
ASH_M's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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We have the Babytrend Flex Loc and my DD is almost 10 months old - we're not even on the top notch for the shoulder straps yet. We love it. I've also heard that the Chicco ones are awesome. We going to have to get a convertible one soon though and switch DD into it to give the BT to the new baby. Good luck - carseat shopping was the bane of my existence last time.
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