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  1. #1
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    Car Seats in a MotorHome?

    So we are borrowing my mom's motorhome to go camping this week, and I just went inside it and was perplexed as to where to put these kids while we drive it? there is one other seat behind the passenger seat...a leather recliner of sorts, but no seat belt. then there's the couch, and eating area.

    where do I put the kids? I have a nearly 5 year old boy who rides in a nautilus and sometimes a TurboBooster (what I planned on taking for ease), and a 2 yr old DD who rides RFing in a Roundabout 55. I'm fine foward facing her in the motor home...but where?

    stumped. do people even use car seats in motor homes?
    Carter 6yrs in a Graco High Back Turbo booster Ella 3yrs FF in a Radian or Nautilus Levi 6m RF in either True Fit or RA55.

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  3. #2
    CPS Technician Cryssy Jane's Avatar
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    Nope. The only safe place to really put a carseat in a motorhome is in the passenger seat. :-/

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    Crystal: CPST, DCP and BFF to:
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    Rocking out in a 2015 Subaru WRX and a 2006 Toyota Sienna

  4. #3
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    Re: Car Seats in a MotorHome?

    really? people must do this somehow, right? this isn't something I even though about...now the motor home is at my house (after it took 3 hrs to get it here), and we are leaving Thursday.

    it'll be a cold day in hell before I convince DH to let me drive seperately with the kids, and spend even MORE money on gas in addition to the gas guzzler motor home.

    i'm freaking out about this. has anyone done it?
    Carter 6yrs in a Graco High Back Turbo booster Ella 3yrs FF in a Radian or Nautilus Levi 6m RF in either True Fit or RA55.

  5. #4
    Admin - CPS Technician LISmama810's Avatar
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    People do it, but it's really not safe. Even in the front seat there are a ton of projectiles (including any unbelted passengers). Even with seat belts, child restraints can't be installed on side-facing seats.

    Honestly, most people just let their kids wander free, which might or might not be legal (depending on your state), but certainly isn't safe.

  6. #5
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    Re: Car Seats in a MotorHome?

    Man. I'll talk to DH about it tonight. Letting my kids wander free in a moving vehicle is absolutely not an option for me.

    I guess just wondering if anyone here has done it, and felt good about it? I know many people DO it, but are those the same ppl who normally buckle their kids in with the straps falling off and seats not installed right to begin with?
    Carter 6yrs in a Graco High Back Turbo booster Ella 3yrs FF in a Radian or Nautilus Levi 6m RF in either True Fit or RA55.

  7. #6
    Admin - CPS Technician LISmama810's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KristinJ
    I know many people DO it, but are those the same ppl who normally buckle their kids in with the straps falling off and seats not installed right to begin with?
    Probably I'm not sure you'll find anyone here who's done it. It's the reason we didn't even consider a motorhome when shopping for an RV.

    Are you towing a separate car anyway? I know your DH might not be thrilled with the idea of paying for more gas, but in your situation, I'd insist on driving separately.

  8. #7
    CPS Fanatic bubbaray's Avatar
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    Re: Car Seats in a MotorHome?

    Quote Originally Posted by KristinJ View Post
    I guess just wondering if anyone here has done it, and felt good about it? I know many people DO it, but are those the same ppl who normally buckle their kids in with the straps falling off and seats not installed right to begin with?
    We RV at least once a year. We rented Class C motorhomes for 2 years with DD#1. We are in Canada and the models we rented had one TT anchor (same pictogram used for LATCH TT anchors here). The first year, she RFd, the 2nd year she FFd. We installed the seats at the dining table (ETA on the bench that faced the direction of travel -- that's where the TA was), with the table top removed (and stowed underneath in a cargo area, IIRC). The seatbelts were bolted to the frame of the RV, not the plywood. We installed the seat directly on the plywood of the seat (stowing the cushion).

    My understanding is that US Class C motorhomes generally do NOT have TT anchors. I've never seen a Class A with them, though DH says he has seen a Class A with anchors up here. Class As are the bus-like RVs.

    At that time, DH was pretty much not on board with much to do with car seat safety and this was about all I could get him to agree to.

    In subsequent years (5 yrs?? possibly 6, I've lost track) we either rent 5th wheels or trailers. Mainly due to the car seat situation (now we have DD#2 too), but also for convenience.

    It seems to me you have some parental decisions to make:

    1. Go in the RV, make the best of some not-so-great options.
    2. Take a 2nd vehicle (no way would I have ever been able to get DH to agree to this when he was still in motorhome mode, interestingly, we did exactly this last year for one trip).
    3. Skip the vacation altogether.


    If you are determined to go all in the RV, some options might include putting your youngest FFg in the front passenger seat and having your oldest ride in a lap-belt only at the dinette. My understanding is that child restraints can never be installed on side-ways seats (like the couch) and never on a swivel seat (like the recliner). The RVs we have rented and seen at RV shows usually have stickers stating this.

    None of this addresses the legality issues (ie., if your 5yo is at the dinette in the lap-only belt, can you be ticketed for non-compliance with any booster laws). There is also the issue addressed up-thread about projectiles.

    This is really a parental judgment call. If you're looking for tech reassurance on the use of child restraints in motorhomes, its highly unlikely (from prior threads I've read here) that you'll find it here. JMHO.

    HTH
    Melissa

    DD#1, April 2004, FFg in a Pink Harmony Literider & Onyx Parkway SG
    DD#2, January 2007, FFg in a Pink Monterey & Purple with Pink Hearts HBTB

    Riding in my 2010 Toyota RAV4 and DH's 2011 Ford 150 Crew Cab

  9. #8
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    Re: Car Seats in a MotorHome?

    thank you for the info! I went back in to check things out. The swivel recliner has no seat belt at all. The dinette has nothing- not even lap belts available, and the couch has nothing either.
    I wish I would have thought this thru before borrowing the motorhome. I would have rented a trailer or fifth wheel instead. ugh. kind of late for that now since we have the motor home at my house, and we've already put $100 in gas in it.

    we're going 2 hours away, so I told DH we're just going to have to suck it up and drive the van behind him. Maybe if there was a way to secure the car seats to any spots besides the passenger seat, I would...but there's not.

    next year, we'll know better...or hopefully have enough saved to buy our own used camper. we've always borrowed DH's mom's trailer, but this year she's using it...so we thought we'd just take my mom's RV.

    oh well. at least we're only going 2 hours away....not TOO bad.
    Carter 6yrs in a Graco High Back Turbo booster Ella 3yrs FF in a Radian or Nautilus Levi 6m RF in either True Fit or RA55.

  10. #9
    CPS Fanatic bubbaray's Avatar
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    Re: Car Seats in a MotorHome?

    NO question, in those circumstances, I would NEVER put my children in that motorhome. Good choice to drive. Its only 2 hrs. Our trip last year where I drove my SUV, it was 5hrs away.
    Melissa

    DD#1, April 2004, FFg in a Pink Harmony Literider & Onyx Parkway SG
    DD#2, January 2007, FFg in a Pink Monterey & Purple with Pink Hearts HBTB

    Riding in my 2010 Toyota RAV4 and DH's 2011 Ford 150 Crew Cab

  11. #10
    Carseat Crazy luvsviola's Avatar
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    We drive separately. You always want a car to explore where we are going, anyway.
    Kristen
    Mama to Abby~1/24/07~42#~FFing in a Radian XTSL, and 2 Turbo HBBs
    Kendall~3/17/11~22#~RFing in an ETA, TrueFit, and 80SL
    and Ledger~4/4/09~35#~FFing in a Frontier, Frontier85, and Maestro

  12. #11
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    Re: Car Seats in a MotorHome?

    Quote Originally Posted by bubbaray View Post
    None of this addresses the legality issues (ie., if your 5yo is at the dinette in the lap-only belt, can you be ticketed for non-compliance with any booster laws).
    It's my understanding that they can't ticket you for not using a CR and/or seatbelt when it's not failure to use.

    You can't buckle up. There aren't any/enough seatbelts.

    That said, I would definitely want to drive separately. Its only 2 hours - that's not even a tank of gas in my car.

    Ditto for Classic or Antique cars - you can't use a booster in a vehicle with lap belt only and you can't use seatbelts when there aren't any.

  13. #12
    CPS Fanatic Morganthe's Avatar
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    Re: Car Seats in a MotorHome?

    Quote Originally Posted by KristinJ View Post
    we're going 2 hours away, so I told DH we're just going to have to suck it up and drive the van behind him.
    ....
    oh well. at least we're only going 2 hours away....not TOO bad.
    You're right. I'd drive the van without a second thought if I were in your circumstances. 2 hours is not very long & not terrible for fuel costs (even with a guzzler). Then you can leave t he RV in place if you need to go anywhere else.


    (I'm facing a 5 hour/350 mile drive tomorrow, so I'd happily welcome a mere 2 hour commute )
    My Munchkin -- Nov 2008--5 years, 45.5", 42lbs
    Current Stats: 12 years old /5'5/ 115lbs/ Seatbelt

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