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Ds is over 16 kg and currently in a Britax First Class Plus seat, but his eyes are now level with the seat back. I need to move him to a group 2-3 seat don't I? Was hoping to keep him in that one a bit longer but if he's getting too tall I shouldn't.
At 2.9y he's almost certainly not developmentally ready for a HBB - with a harnessed seat you control how safe he is by strapping him in, with a HBB you have to trust him not to reach out for a dropped toy, wriggle about, stand up, pull the seat belt about. I would say the vast majority of 2y wouldn't understand that they need to sit still for the whole of the journey in order to stay safe where as an older child of 4y or more would be more able to.
Pretty much your only option for a forward facing harnessed seat is a Britax Two Way Elite (harnesses to 25kg and is good for tall children - my 115cm, 20kg 5y 4m old still has growing room in hers), though if you were to get a erf seat you would have a bit bigger choice - Britax Hi-Way II / Maxway / Multi-tech, AX Kid Kidzone / Minikid, Maxi Cosi Mobi and Brio Zento though you would need to check that there was adequate growing room before purchasing as some will have shorter seat backs than others.
Hmm, the problem with a 123 seat is they tend to say remove the harness at 15kg or when the shoulders are above the top harness points, which he would be.
The Britax 2 way elite only seems to be sold by one place and costs a bomb. What if its not suitable? Not really happy about the lack of choice here. DS is tall and heavy but not unusually so so we can't be the only people in this position.
Anyway, I had a chat with DS about staying safe in car seats an he seems to be ok with the idea of not playing with the belt or buckle. He always insists on making sure everyone else in the car is belted in before we move anyway. I think I will look at the Britax Kid Plus or Recaro Monza Nova and see how supportive they are if he falls asleep in it and go from there.
Thanks for the advice, I really think the manufacturers have got the weights they go up to here wrong!
have a look at an evolve 123 (also britax), my 4.4 yr old dd is still in the strap in hers and she has quite a long back. the strap definitely fits for longer than the britax group 1 seat that we had before.
Thanks janec. I will measure DS1 when he wakes up from his nap. I saw one of those in th hop earlier but it didn't look lik the straps were that much higher. However, I am useless at estimating sizes so that could well be me being hopelessly wrong!
I got the two way Elite for DS2 who was over 18kg at that age. I did try him with a normal seatbelt but he would get out of it, just wasnt ready. He is now 3.5. Still in the Elite. Its fine for him (he is tall too) and a great relief to us. I didnt want to fork out that much money but as you say, theres little other option which is crazy. Couldnt quite believe it at the time but it was worth it.
Try the kiddy guardian pro 2. It has to be this one, not one with a similar name. Has a which best buy which is rare for a seat that goes from group 1-4 . Which tests are a lot more stringent than eu ones. You may need to take the shelf thing off the front or you may get another few months out of it. I can't remember if we got ours from the Glasgow pram centre or bhs on line.
I have just been through this. It appears there is a gap in the market for tall toddlers especially if you have to fit 3 across the back seat like I do. From the 2 places I went to even some of the high back booster with integral harnesses that Halfords have now have the same bum to shoulder height as a forward facing car seat so no benefit. I have about 1 inch height left in DS before his eyes are level with seat back and I don't want to move him at 3.2 into a hhb using only the seat belt.
My mum has an Evola 123 in her car and he fits in it. It is just too wide for me with 2 other car seats to fit in.
I also have large, tall, heavy child. We moved him to a high back booster about a month before his third birthday. We gave him a very strict talking to, and he has been great in it, even on long journeys (my mum lives 6 hours away). I underestimated his maturity! He is 4.6 now and straps himself in.
I had the same problem with my 2 & 1/2 yr old at the start of the year.
I went to halfords for advice & I am never putting my trust in them again. They advised us to have a high back booster for him which he then got out of in the back of my car while I was driving.
Moan over, the in car safety centre are amazing we live in Gloucestershire so couldn't get to their store in milton keynes but gave me advice over the phone & my son is now safe. We've got the britax 2 way elite it was very expensive to buy & the only carseat we could find suitable for him and it'll last him years longer compared to his other carseats