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Car seat base - a must?

(9 Posts)
Verobeach Tue 11-Oct-11 22:26:21

I was just wondering whether you actually need to have the base for the car seat or is it also safe to use just a seat belt? I've never really seen these car seat isofix bases before, only when I went to enquire about travel systems, the shop assistant advised me to get one of them! But do you really need it?? Any advice would be lovely. Thanks!

SecretNutellaFix Tue 11-Oct-11 22:28:56

You don't need one unless your seat belt is too short to allow the correct and safe fitting of an infant carrier. There are also some car seats that are NOT compatible with any base.

Verobeach Tue 11-Oct-11 22:34:35

Do you know which car seat is safer or better: Maxi Cosi or Britax?

BertieBotts Tue 11-Oct-11 22:43:54

No, you don't need one at all.

Not sure about which is safer - AFAIK those two are the safest. If you go to your library, you could read the results of the Which? crash tests. The Britax is 3cm longer (got this from an old MN thread) which means that you can use it for longer. If you decide to move to a forward facing seat when your baby outgrows the infant seat, this is an advantage as it means your baby can be rear facing for longer. However, if you were to choose a rear facing group 1 seat at that point, it wouldn't make any difference.

If you do decide to go for a travel system, the maxi cosi is compatible with a vast number of pushchairs, the Britax one only Britax pushchairs.

justforinfo Tue 18-Oct-11 18:56:57

Britax is safer, on the new babysafe plus SHR's they have D-SIP which is additional side impact protection, also it's slightly more upright (although still comfortable for baby) it's better to be more upright as if you did have a crash the force is spread more evenly, whereas if the child is reclined further back it can still put pressure on the spine!

justforinfo Tue 18-Oct-11 18:59:00 this is a list of prams the britax fits onto smile

KateShmate Tue 18-Oct-11 19:27:25

Have always been told that the isofix ones are safer because they are less likely to move around and everything..
We had the bases and you literally couldnt budge the seat a centimetre because its kind of attached to the car.. but with the seat belt it often slides around a bit - esp on leather seats.
Obviously its not necessary, we didnt have the base for our first 2, but after having it with number 3,4 and 5 it was much easier to literally clip in/clip out. Its slightly faffy putting the seat in, then putting the belt around then halfway through the seatbelt locks and you have to start again ; also a bit tricky trying to manoeuvre a newborn through the seatbelt bit when its already strapped in.
Dont quote me on the safety thing - is just what I was told; to be honest we only got the bases for 3,4+5 because it was so much easier!

thisisyesterday Tue 18-Oct-11 19:33:03

no, you don't need it. a correctly fitted belted seat is as safe as an isofix one

it's nice from a convenience point of view though as you just have to clip the seat in and out.

I would second the recommendation for Britax too although that's partly because I just don't like maxi cosi as a company.
Britax seats however are taller in the back than maxi cosi and as such may last you longer

justforinfo Tue 18-Oct-11 19:38:43

Isofix is safer as you can't fit it incorrectly, and i've seen some scary crash tests where baby carriers have been fitted incorrectly :-/ As for safety, whether the seat is fitted with a seatbelt or isofix base it's still only ever tested at 50km/h (about 31mph) So there's really no way to say, on the same note Britax have their own crash test rig and test their seats from the first class up to a much higher speed and force. (The eclipse and prince are not tested at the higher speed/force) Also bear in mind that SIP doesn't have to be tested legally but Britax again, do test this! this is a pretty good price too! £95!

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