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  1. #1
    CPS Fanatic monstah's Avatar
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    Booster question. High back outboard or no back center?

    This might be a crazy question as I sit here thinking about our future in seats. I was wondering what is a better choice for a 4+ year old (50 pounds & tall - same size as an average 5-6 year old) if the only option was HBB outboard in a very safe car with side curtain airbags or - LBB center with two RF seats on either side.

    Not something I am dealing with now, I was just contemplating future scenarios.

    I'm not looking for solutions, I'm just wondering if the safety advantages of a HBB are not as important if the passenger is sandwiched between two other car seats.

    (Assuming the seatbelt fits correctly of course.)

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  3. #2
    Carseat Crankypants carseatcoach's Avatar
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    Re: Booster question. High back outboard or no back center?

    I guess that depends on how much "4+" is. I would not want to see a child under 6.5(ish) in a backless booster as a primary seat, regardless of size. A 9yo, sure, backless center is great.
    CPST and Mama to a 13yo girl, 5-stepped at age 10 and 5'

    Posted from my toaster using a PopTart

  4. #3
    CPS Fanatic monstah's Avatar
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    Re: Booster question. High back outboard or no back center?

    Quote Originally Posted by chickabiddy View Post
    I guess that depends on how much "4+" is. I would not want to see a child under 6.5(ish) in a backless booster as a primary seat, regardless of size. A 9yo, sure, backless center is great.
    So you think under 6.5ish, against the door in a HBB is the better than center in a LBB? (Provided the seatbelt fits properly.)
    That's what I am thinking.


    What if one of the seats was FF? Would that change anyones answer?

  5. #4
    CPS Technician Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Booster question. High back outboard or no back center?

    I would always keep a child in a HBB regardless of location until at least 7ish years old and over 50 pounds. Double especially if it's beside a FF seat.
    I'm glad you're a safe driver. I'm eating cereal and applying mascara using my rear view mirror while playing bejeweled on my iPhone. And I'm driving right behind you. 
    You're only as safe as the most dangerous driver on the road. Buckle accordingly.  

  6. #5
    Senior Community Member Amaris's Avatar
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    Re: Booster question. High back outboard or no back center?

    I wouldn't and didn't use a backless until I had to, but a minimum of 7.5-8 years old. By the time my oldest moved to a backless the middle seat didn't have any head support for him. I guess it depends on head support once they are old enough. Our middle seats do not have adjustable head rests, so it wasn't even an option for us.



  7. #6
    Admin - CPS Technician joolsplus3's Avatar
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    Re: Booster question. High back outboard or no back center?

    I'm very pro-highback. Even my 10 and 12 year olds still ride in them most of the time. I just think any extra little protection the headwings might provide is beneficial in a side crash, and most cars have terrible head restraints (IIHS has a page showing what makes a good head restraint... Volvo has great ones, and curtain airbags, so I've let my kids ride in no backs in grandma's car, but in my Odyssey? ...If a highback booster does even a little to prevent whiplash, that is worth it to keep using it... FMVSS doesn't do any testing so we would know for sure, but my gut tells me it helps).
    Yes, even outboard is safe. Any seat in the back, properly restrained, is very safe. I know we strive for Least Protected Child in Most Protected Spot, but often it's simply not feasible due to fit or convenience reasons, so no sweat if you can't do it (I've almost always had Leah in the center of our Escape, to keep the big kids from fighting, and because there's no foot room for the big kids in the middle...).
    A 4-6 year old usually fits in a Radian or Marathon (narrow or seat on a high base), and that's WAY easier to buckle than any booster when fitting three across.
    Julie
    CPST since 2003, pu"R"ple since 2008, three kids growing too fast since 1997, 1999 and 2006

    Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good

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