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Older cars and new car seats.

(33 Posts)
SarryB Fri 21-Sep-12 21:55:55

I'm just looking to update LO's carseat, as he is almost too long for the infant carrier we're currently using.

I'm confused! And a little concerned that the newer style of carseats won't fit our car. We have a Land Rover Discovery - it's quite old, about 15 years old. The seatbelts are quite short (it's a bit of a wrestle to get the infant carrier in!), and the back seats aren't flat like more modern cars, they slope quite a bit.

I don't have a huge amount of money to spend on a seat, maybe £100 if I really stretch our budget. I've been looking at the KiddiCouture Latitude seat from Kiddicare.

lagoonhaze Fri 21-Sep-12 21:59:42

how old is you LO? What weight is he. When you say hes too long - does he have any room left at the head end?

aimingtobeaperfectionist Fri 21-Sep-12 22:00:48

Could you take it to somewhere like mamas and papas and get them to try and fit one, show you how to do it and if it fits etc (think other places do this too) then find one on Internet that's cheaper? Save having to buy/return?

Does your car have long belt buckle strap(bit the main belt clips into)?
If so then somthing like the Britax First Class would be a good choice as it has an alternate rouiting to strap it in for cars with long belt clips.
This was the main problem a friend of ours had with their old car. Most modern seats wouldn't fit because of buckle crunch. The First Class was the only seat they could find to fit at the time.

SarryB Fri 21-Sep-12 22:14:33

He is 5 months old, his head is about 2 inches from the top of the seat - he's very close to outgrowing it! He's a skinny tall boy, just like his dad.

I can't really take the car anywhere to check one out - we live way out in the Highlands of Scotland, nearest 'baby' shop is 2.5 hours drive, and it's a shitty Mothercare.

I have to do the majority of shopping for baby things on the interwebs, it can be bloody hard at times!

sanityawol Fri 21-Sep-12 22:15:43

Britax have a Fit Finder on their website - I had similar problems with my older car. I'm not aware of any other manufacturers that have this.

Alternatively, do you have a Halfords or Mothercare that do seat fitting near you? It might be an idea to go to a store and you should be able to get them to keep trying seats until they find one that fits properly.

sanityawol Fri 21-Sep-12 22:21:27

X-posts.

Having worked in road safety a few years ago, please take notice of the weight and age criteria. They are there for a reason. I also have very tall children, it doesn't matter if their feet overhang. Providing his head is not over the top of the car seat then he will be fine in the infant carrier.

Rubirosa Fri 21-Sep-12 22:22:35

Most baby seats will fit a child up until at least 12 months (often 15-18 months) so you will have a while yet. The shorter seatbelt won't be so much of an issue once he can face forward at 12+ months.

SarryB Fri 21-Sep-12 22:24:13

His head is very nearly at the top - I really want to research/buy a car seat now, so it's ready to install as soon as we need it, as we are so far away from any shops etc.

SarryB Fri 21-Sep-12 22:27:26

I had to remove the newborn insert when he was 3 weeks old, and adjust the straps to the highest setting when he was 3 months. I really don't think he's going to last much longer in that one.

If he is only 5mths then he is far too young to be in a ff seat. Give the people at 'in car saftey centre' a ring (cant link now but google them). They are brilliant and may be able to sugest what would be best for you. It might be worth saving up and getting somthing like the Britax hiway or another ERF seat.

Which infant seat have you currently got? It doesn't matter that the head's nearly at the top, it's the weight and age that matter. IIRC they're ok length wise until the ears are over the top of the seat

Also, how much does he weigh?

sanityawol Fri 21-Sep-12 22:38:14

In that case, given that Kiddicare have an excellent delivery service and stock most major makes, you have plenty of time to choose the best carseat for you.

With the best will in the world, and I know that you are excited about your DS growing, it will take less than a week to get the next one delivered to your door. You're not going to wake up one morning and suddenly find he doesn't fit in his existing seat.

Moving up to the next size car seat is not a developmental milestone - for his safety, the longer you can leave him in the infant carrier, the better.

LemonBreeland Fri 21-Sep-12 22:39:40

You really need to keep him rear facing until at least 9 months as an absolute minimum. The baby carrier seats are safe until the top of their ears reaches the top of the seat.

I would highly recommend britax online for finding what fits your car. It is very helpful. Agree that short seatbelts are less of an issue then.

Rubirosa Fri 21-Sep-12 22:43:56

You can get Stage 0+1 seats that will face backwards til 13kg or so and then forwards - Kiddicare do some reclining ones that would work for a very young baby. Is it possible to get seatbelt extenders maybe?

LemonBreeland Fri 21-Sep-12 22:45:17

Just had a look on Britax, here are the results fo fit for your car. Britax

You can get the Eclipse from £79.99 online.

LemonBreeland Fri 21-Sep-12 22:46:13

Oops my link didn't totally work, but you can put in the deatails yourself.

RandomMess Fri 21-Sep-12 22:49:37

The babies eye level has to be level or below the back of the seat in the infant carriers so you have a while yet, it's perfectly fine for the top of their heads to go above.

Rear facing is far far safer than forward facing.

Britax and Maxi Cosi do on line finders to tell you what will fit in your car. Do you have a lap belt in the middle of the back seat. Some stage 1 car seats can use lap belt only.

Different kettle of fish but we have an ERF in our 17 year old car.

And the seatbelts are stupidly short. To the extent where anyone wearing clothing over a size 20-22 won't be having a very comfy ride. Its a common problem with older cars. NO harnessed HBB will fit in our car- we've tried them all!

Another problem is that the seatbelt stalks can be quite long. TBH you'll need to take the car with you when you're trying out carseats.

bonkersLFDT20 Fri 21-Sep-12 22:53:00

I really think you need to find the time to get to somewhere who fits car seats. It's very important. Your DS should be at least 20lb AND a year old before turning him FF (it's to do with the neck bones being soft).

There are places which check the fit of the seat is good. Halfords should be able to advise. Do a google for Road Safety Team in your area. Or ask your local police.

The next stage car seat will be used for a couple of years so you won't have to do it often.

bonkersLFDT20 Fri 21-Sep-12 22:55:10

Sorry, didn't read your post r.e. living in the highlands.

You might find the carseat you linked to hard to fit in your car- it has a very large, very wide flat base. It looks very much like a nania/teamtex seat- they tend to produce 'own makes' for pretty much all the major retailers out there.

We did have success with a First Class in our car, but fitting it using the seatbelt was a very tight squeeze and took the pair of us to do.

bonkersLFDT20 Fri 21-Sep-12 22:56:02

I thought infant carriers it was when top of head reaches top of seat for it to be outgrown and It was FF and some ERF seats where its ears/eyes at top of seat?

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