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car seats for a light 3 year old?

(14 Posts)
elliott Mon 06-Jun-05 16:46:02

Starting another thread on this. I've discovered I have one of the 'car seats to avoid' according to the recent Which report.
What sort of seat is recommended for a 3.5 year old who has not yet reached the 15 kg cut off point?

LIZS Mon 06-Jun-05 16:55:38

Ooh will watch with interest. Our nearly 4 yr old (12kg) is in same position. Currently in Freeway Excel inherited from her brother but the cover is worn, we 've had very minor bumps in car, and we will change our car soon anyway. Makes it very awkward to accept lifts from friends who are happy to have theirs ride on boosters. Was considering a Britax Trio or similar but not any more !

marthamoo Mon 06-Jun-05 17:00:50

Good idea, elliot. Wonder if we'll end up buying the same one?

My ds1 has the Concord Lift Pro here and I'm wondering now about getting another one for ds2 (though as the Concord Trimax we have for ds2 has failed dismally in the Which? report I'm now a bit wary of Concord). Anyone know if that's featured in the Which? report? Janh, my love, can you have a look for me puhleease????

marthamoo Mon 06-Jun-05 17:19:15

Concord Lift Pro gets Mumsnet's 'top buy' in the review section (which is why I bought it for ds1!) It's only suitable from 15 kgs though.

GeorginaA Mon 06-Jun-05 17:34:50

Is there a list somewhere of the car seats to avoid, elliott? Am worried now!

smable Mon 06-Jun-05 17:53:25

I thought you might be interested to know that i have phoned Which! about these seats this afternoon to ask how they calculate result for seats that cover more than 1 weight range as i have a Concord Trimax and both sets of Grandparents have a Britax Trio and i find it hard to believe that they don't get very different crash result with the back rest and integeral harnesses fitted and then used just as a booster seat.
The lady i spoke to didn't have the information to answer the question so has refered it on to someone else who will try and find this out before getting back to me but due to the nature or the question they expect it to takr at least 2-3 days i will of course post on here as soon as i know any more.

LIZS Mon 06-Jun-05 18:41:50

Georgina A, there is a summary listed by csa on this thread but not sure it is comprehensive, just the worst according to Which ? .

GeorginaA Mon 06-Jun-05 18:44:56

Thanks LIZS - okay, mine isn't on there, but three of the Britaxes are. Thought they were meant to be one of the safest!

Hmm, seriously thinking of signing up to Which now so I can read the full report

marthamoo Mon 06-Jun-05 21:59:08

Reassuringly, ds1's Concord Lift Pro is Which's recommended seat for 15kgs and over. We're going to buy another one. Though I feel like writing to Concord and saying "your bl88dy Trimax is cr@p and I think you should send us a Lift Pro for free!"

zebraZ Mon 06-Jun-05 22:11:07

I still have DD (3.5yo) in a maxi-cosi A-priori seat, she's only about 13.2 kg. (*Is maxi-cosi ok, anybody?)

I haven't seen the Which? report in entirety, but I know one of their other concerns was how easy the seat is to fit -- I chose this one because it's very easy to fit correctly (we use hire cars). HTH.

elliott Tue 07-Jun-05 09:30:37

thanks for the responses. I do actually have the Which report so should go and read it properly (its at home, I'm at work) but it seems that safety varies by individual seat not by manufacturer - so some of the Britax seats are best buys, while some of them are in 'seats to avoid'. Smable that's a good point - ds1 is in the Trio with the 5 point harness and back fitted - so will be v interested in the reply from the csa.

We moved ds1 out of his Britax eclipse (which I think is ok, not the best buy but ok) because ds2 needed it, and he seemed to be quite big for it so we wanted to move on to somethign that would last longer. The vast majority of seats meant for the stage after the eclipse or similar are only recommended for over 15kg. It does seem to be a real problem for light 3-4 year olds - maybe we need a bit of guidance about what exactly is the importance of the weight cut off?

foxinsocks Tue 07-Jun-05 10:00:53

we have just had this problem with our 3 yr old.

Apparently (though for the life of me I cannot remember where I read this!), the 15kg cut off is given because the adult seat belt does not work correctly with anyone under that weight. I think it's because it doesn't 'tense' properly although lots of cars are fitted with a device that automatically tenses them when the brakes are pressed hard (but I guess that doesn't include the situation where you don't get a chance to break).

I researched the car seats - the best one in group 1 was the mamas and papas protec (I think that is what it was called). It rated almost as high as the isofix britax one. They can stay in that until they are 18kg. Otherwise, you can get those other seats where you can use a harness until they are a certain weight and then switch to a seatbelt - mothercare do one - but to be honest, it didn't look very sturdy at all to me.

After all that researching, I went to John Lewis, all prepared to get the mamas and papas one - told them the whole palava and they weighed him and he was 15kg so we went with the Britax kid! I had been weighing him without clothes etc. first thing in the morning and with a meal and some clothes on, he was over 1kg heavier.

foxinsocks Tue 07-Jun-05 10:03:16

don't get a chance to brake even not break! arrgghh

hope that helps you a bit. It is a pain - especially when all their friends are about 5kg heavier and in easy booster seats! I was also agonising a bit about paying £100 for the mamas and papas with the prospect of him gaining a few kilos in the next 6 months and reaching the next stage. Of course, I don't mind paying for their safety but all these car seats are so expensive.

elliott Tue 07-Jun-05 10:08:36

thanks foxinsocks. The Trio works like that - he's still in the harness but can switch over to the seat belt when 15 kg. The alternative was another seat he'd be out of by 18kg - but then again, it might actually take quite a while to reach that stage!

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