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Childminder and car seats

(22 Posts)
MollyBloomYes Tue 02-May-17 16:02:59

I think I've found a great childminder for my two boys, she'll be able to do drop off and pick up at my son's pre school and does lots of outings etc.

However, she doesn't have rear facing car seats (my two are 3 and 18 months). She's happy for me to supply rear facing but is slightly concerned they may not fit in her car (Seat Alhambra) with her other charges' seats.

I'd need to buy two new car seats for her as mine are ridiculously heavy and one is tethered and a pain to move in and out regularly. Money's a bit tight so I'd probably want to go for the Joie Tilt which will be about 140 quid for two. But if they don't fit I won't be able to return them (I believe you can only return if faulty) so it's a big risk financially!

I don't know what to do, I never wanted to compromise them being rear facing, it's sort of one of the only parenting 'things' I'm really inflexible on (or thought I was....) I appreciate this could be an issue whoever I go with and tbh, nobody else can do the pre school runs I need.

Anyone been in a similar situation or can offer any advice?!

OP’s posts: |
allegretto Tue 02-May-17 16:04:50

I woukd let it go. How long will tgey actually spend in her car?

Orangebird69 Tue 02-May-17 16:53:46

I'd let it go too, but if you won't, order the seats online. Under distance selling laws you can inform them within 14 days of receipt of goods that you want to return for a refund and then another 14 days from then to actually return them.

skyzumarubble Tue 02-May-17 16:58:26

Do you know how many other charges she has? I've got a zafira (ugly bus) and can only fit dts seats in and no others so it may al be irrelevant anyway iyswim?

Heratnumber7 Tue 02-May-17 17:10:25

How often does she take her mindees out in the car? And for how long a journey?

If it's just a 5 min school at 30mph each day I wouldn't sweat it tbh.

Doglikeafox Tue 02-May-17 17:27:10

Hi OP, I have been in a very similar situation but as the childminder. The mum and I agreed to meet on a weekend at a local mothercare to try the car seats before she purchased

NapQueen Tue 02-May-17 17:28:54

If you call the In Car Safety Centre they may be able to help say what would fit over the phone.

However Id go for a seat thats as simple to fit as possible. If shes bringing the seats in and out lots then she needs to be able to fit them properly, confidently.

PastysPrincess Tue 02-May-17 17:29:52

Go to a mothercare. They actually brought a car seat out of the store and tried it in my car. They were great.

I am like you and wouldn't compromise on rear facing.

Bananamanfan Tue 02-May-17 17:33:05

Check the car seat manufacturers website, the manuals often have lists of compatible cars. Found out i could use dd's highback booster in the middle seat of my car, which was handy.

Maryann1975 Tue 02-May-17 22:12:11

Checking the manual might not give the right answer. It will tell you that the seat fits in the car, but won't tell you if you can fit the third seat in the middle and if the cm needs three seats in the back, just because the erf seat fits the car it might not fit the seat configuration needed (which might be different on different days).

jannier Wed 03-May-17 14:31:32

Have to say I would struggle to fit in 2 rear facing seats in my Galaxy and then access the other seats the back seats are out as you cant get in to do them up then whichever side is parked pavement side needs to be lift out as I don't let children in and out on the road side of the car. I have my rear facing in the middle seat only. Then there is getting 5 or 6 children in the car when its pouring with rain taking off their coats for the harnesses takes long enough without the struggle of juggling fixed rear facing seats. I could see it taking half an hour just to load up the car.

memememe Wed 03-May-17 14:34:05

check on the joie website, ive got a vw sharan and the tilt fits in my car (the albramha is the same) mine is the new model with the sliding doors, but yes the website will tell you if it fits or not. x

memememe Wed 03-May-17 14:36:13

jannier, there is no difference to forward facing seats and rearward ones when it come to having them fixed in and time doing harnesses etc, it doesnt make any difference if the seat is forward or rearward facing it still takes up the space in the car and you still need to take off coats and do harnesses etc

BertieBotts Wed 03-May-17 14:38:23

Joie have a fit finder on their website.

I think I'd be tempted to supply RF for the 18mo and just let the 3yo be forward facing. It's not likely that the childminder will commonly be driving at speeds higher than 30mph. It is most important that children are correctly restrained, being rear facing is a nice bonus, but not realistically life or death no matter what the stats say, especially over 2 years old, except in freak accidents which are difficult to predict outcomes anyway.

The other alternative would be a nursery so that there are no car trips at all. Of course that would mean dropping preschool.

MollyBloomYes Wed 03-May-17 15:04:32

Thanks everyone, I know I'm probably being a bit precious about small journeys in and around the village (she does do a lot of trips with the kids who don't have pre school but locally). It was something I really didn't want to compromise but this way it is at least the minimum amount.

I think configuration is key really, it's not just whether my two fit in but whether they will then fit on different days with different kids (and I may need to eventually increase days which makes the mind boggle even more!)

Thanks again for all the replies, going to let it go!

OP’s posts: |
jannier Wed 03-May-17 21:54:30


My fixed seats are in the rear I can access them by dropping the middle row outer door crawling into the car and fastening child who is facing me If they were rear facing at the back I would struggle to reach round and fasten the nearest seat and worse for the furthest. In the mean time I have 2 children sat in middle row one child sat in front seat and a child seat sat on the road along with the pushchair (double) if its raining they are getting wet as our my feet and backside. (all children's coats are removed anyway which takes time but is a must)....if I had 3 under 5's as I do now the other baby seat would have to take middle seat in middle row....if I fit all 3 rear facing in the middle row the 8 year olds could not access the rear seats (insufficient room to go between gap from rear ...and not good in rear shunt as blocked in) so id have to take out a rear facing every time to access for 8 year olds.....3 wet children and a rear facing seat in road ....that would add an awful long time on a school run too.

memememe Thu 04-May-17 18:54:34

jannier, got ya! i work it the other way and have my bigger ones in the boot with the 2 rear facing in middle seat and behind passenger. i can see how it would be a struggle your way!

jannier Sat 06-May-17 19:43:00

In my car putting children in the rear boot seats with a full row of fixed seats would not be safe if you had a rear shunt as you couldn't get them out quickly. I like to make sure all seats can be accessed without unfastening and removing heavy bulky seats ...and I'm thinking a rear shunt is quiet likely.

wickerlampshade Tue 09-May-17 13:59:22

Britax two way elite will fit in just about any car and very easy and quick to fit. you can buy extra tether straps to leave in her car

Laura25o6 Fri 19-May-17 06:49:13

My mum is a childminder and has been for over 20 years. She has had to buy all her car seats herself. From newborn to toddler to the ones used now. Your childminder should be buying the seats if she's taking on your children.

That's how my mum has always done it

Snap8TheCat Fri 19-May-17 06:56:02

The childminder is buying and providing car seats. The op has a specific preference to another seat though, a very expensive and possible incompatible one at that.

Did you not read the thread?

jannier Mon 22-May-17 22:32:55

Laura.....there is no set way things must be done so in addition to the point raised by Snap8The Cat it is also down to the individual and the negotiation the fact your mum doe sit one way does not mean everyone does. For example its common for many not to do the newborn seat as its too restrictive in fit lasting only a short time....Most babies coming to childcare are almost grown out of it.

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