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  1. #1
    CPS Fanatic aept's Avatar
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    Thinking about a Suburban

    DH is thinking of getting a Surburban. It would replace our Prius (yeah, big huge difference there!)
    Reason being dh's commute is super short now so we don't care as much if we have a gas guzzler and it would be nice to have another vehicle that could fit all 4 kids and still have cargo room. Also something good for hauling stuff from Home Depot and such would be nice.

    What do we need to know about shopping for a Suburban? We are thinking of getting an oldish one, maybe 2005-2007 MY, for example. I assume they are pretty good for car seats and boosters but I don't really now. How are they with headrests and lap/shoulder belts and latch/tether anchor locations?
    Our kids are 8 3/4 years (NBB), 7 years (HBB or NBB), 4 years (FF harnessed), and 1 month.
    Ann, mom to 3 big brothers and a baby girl:
    DS1 - Aug 2006, 80 lb, 56", incognitos
    DS2 - May 2008, 77 lb, 51.5", Vivo or NBB
    DS3 - June 2011, 46 lb, 43", FF in FR85 or booster training
    DD - May 2015, 19 lb, 29", ) Snugride 30

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  3. #2
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    I know that they don't have headrests in the center position in the second and third rows. I'm not quite sure about those years for shoulder belts or tethers.

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  5. #3
    Carseat Crazy katymyers's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking about a Suburban

    There will be two-three tethers in the second row depending on whether it's a bench seat or captains chairs, the third row will have just one. I know an '05 or newer will have a lap/shoulder belt in the second row center seat but I'm not sure about the third row center, neither will have headrests.


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  7. #4
    Carseat Crazy mommabritt's Avatar
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    I drive an 06 with captains seats in the second row. I dream of having the bench in the second row.

    There are:
    Top tethers in both captains seats and third row center.
    Third row center is lap belt only.
    Lower anchors in captains seats only.
    Outboard seats in third row are GREAT for boosters and backless boosters, too!
    I've had harnessed seats (from graco to britax to sk radians) installed in all positions without any issues, except with the myride years ago because of terrible ff angle. Obviously, ff seats should stay in positions with top tethers.

    My favorite setup for my current group is one captains seat down with my hbb 7yo in the other. Third row is 12yo in belt, ff 3yo, then backless booster 9yo.

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  9. #5
    CPS Technician TXDani's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking about a Suburban

    The 2005-2006 are going to be completely different than a 2007 model as thats when the body style changed. I would buy a 2007 over an older model in terms of everything...its like a totally different vehicle.

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  11. #6
    CPS Fanatic aept's Avatar
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    Excellent advice, thanks everyone!
    I think I would want the second row to have a bench. That seems the most versatile, I think? Does the outboard seat slide/fold forward to access the third row?

    We will just wait and see if a good one comes up for sale and then probably do a little more in-depth research. We aren't in a big rush.
    Ann, mom to 3 big brothers and a baby girl:
    DS1 - Aug 2006, 80 lb, 56", incognitos
    DS2 - May 2008, 77 lb, 51.5", Vivo or NBB
    DS3 - June 2011, 46 lb, 43", FF in FR85 or booster training
    DD - May 2015, 19 lb, 29", ) Snugride 30

  12. #7
    Carseat Crazy mommabritt's Avatar
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    I don't know if the bench seats do this but my captains chairs slide and also tumble forward.

  13. #8
    Carseat Crazy katymyers's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking about a Suburban

    The second row bench seat does have an outboard seat the tumbles forward but you can't drive with it in that position, it has to be upright and locked while the vehicle is in motion.


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  15. #9
    Carseat Crazy mom of six's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking about a Suburban

    I have a 2009 Suburban

    Middle row bench
    • 2 head rests
    • lap shoulder belts in all three positions
    • latch in center and outboard passanger side (this is the seat that tumbles)
    • TA in all three positions
    • passenger side seat has a two step tumble. One motion to fold seat back down, second motion to rotate entire seat forward ( oh how I wish it slid forward on a track...)


    Back bench
    • Lap shoulder belts in all positions
    • 2 head rests
    • seat is a 50/50 split
    • TA shared between center and driver side seat
    • Center seat belt spacing is narrower than outboard. Kind of a PIA for boosters.


    In 2009 Chevrolet introduced a new 6 speed transmission and a cylinder control manager that will shut down half the cylinders when at cruising speed (like on the freeway). With these changes our 'burb averages about 15 MPG in town and some times as much as 21 MPG on a road trip.

    Three across in the 3rd row can be a challenge. It is about as wide as a dodge caravan back seat. Middle row is a dream. SO WIDE!!!

    I have installed a Raidan FF in all positions in the 3rd row and both FF and RF in the center of the 2nd row.

    I have installed a RA55 FF and RF outboard next to a Harmony Defender in the middle Row.

    I have installed the Harmony defender middle of the 2nd and in all positions in the 3rd row.

    Best booster for the center of the 3rd row is the Harmony V6 because it is narrow. Incognito and Harmony lightrider work too.

    I have installed a Graco Click Connect 30 outboard next to the Defender. OODLES of room

    Just for kicks I installed a Graco SungRide 30 Classic connect in the passenger side 3rd row seat. I could not put the 2nd row seat back up.

    Hope that helps.
    Heather car seat geek since the early 80's & WAHM
    DD1, 17, adult SB, DD2, 15, adult SB, DD3, 13 Adult Seatbelt DD4,9, 5 steppingDS1, 9,5 stepping, DS2, 5, Harmony Defender in booster mode all in our 2009 Suburban!!!

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  17. #10
    CPS Technician TXDani's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking about a Suburban

    Have you considered an Expedition EL? I used to have a Yukon XL (same as the 07+ Suburban inside) and now I have an Expedition EL and I find the Expedition more carseat friendly. Also in the Yukon we had captains chairs but now that we have 5 kids we went with a bench in the Expedition so we would have one extra seat. The bench in the Expedition is nice because its three separate seats that all move independently of each other. So you can have a seat installed in the middle and fold down either side seat to access the third row. Also the third row seems a lot wider than the Yukon but I've never looked at stats to see if thats true

  18. #11
    CPS Fanatic aept's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TXDani View Post
    Have you considered an Expedition EL? I used to have a Yukon XL (same as the 07+ Suburban inside) and now I have an Expedition EL and I find the Expedition more carseat friendly. Also in the Yukon we had captains chairs but now that we have 5 kids we went with a bench in the Expedition so we would have one extra seat. The bench in the Expedition is nice because its three separate seats that all move independently of each other. So you can have a seat installed in the middle and fold down either side seat to access the third row. Also the third row seems a lot wider than the Yukon but I've never looked at stats to see if thats true
    We will have to look into the Expedition, too.
    Both of our families and have had great luck with Fords.
    Ann, mom to 3 big brothers and a baby girl:
    DS1 - Aug 2006, 80 lb, 56", incognitos
    DS2 - May 2008, 77 lb, 51.5", Vivo or NBB
    DS3 - June 2011, 46 lb, 43", FF in FR85 or booster training
    DD - May 2015, 19 lb, 29", ) Snugride 30

  19. #12
    CPS Fanatic SavsMom's Avatar
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    I think the Expedition EL gets overlooked too often. It's amazingly spacious, particularly the 3rd row. I also find it to be a little more agile than the Suburban/Yukon.

    DD - 12/07 - Backless Turbo
    DS - 9/13 - Boulevard

  20. #13
    CPS Fanatic aept's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SavsMom View Post
    I think the Expedition EL gets overlooked too often. It's amazingly spacious, particularly the 3rd row. I also find it to be a little more agile than the Suburban/Yukon.
    I feel like the Suburbans are so easy to find but that I don't see as many Expeditions?
    Ann, mom to 3 big brothers and a baby girl:
    DS1 - Aug 2006, 80 lb, 56", incognitos
    DS2 - May 2008, 77 lb, 51.5", Vivo or NBB
    DS3 - June 2011, 46 lb, 43", FF in FR85 or booster training
    DD - May 2015, 19 lb, 29", ) Snugride 30

  21. #14
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: Thinking about a Suburban

    Why on earth do the middle positions still not have headrests? Argh.

  22. #15
    CPS Fanatic aept's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking about a Suburban

    LATCH manual help please?

    We looked at a 2003 Suburban today and we really liked it. It appears it had tether anchors for every seat in the second row, and for the middle seat of the third row. (Sounds like the same as the 2009 Suburban up thread?) can anyone who has a latch manual confirm if I was correct please?

    It would be a 4-5 year vehicle for us so we should get decentlusefulness out of all the seats as we could hopefully put a radian FF third row center (lap belt and top tether) and put the baby in the center of the second row RF.
    Ann, mom to 3 big brothers and a baby girl:
    DS1 - Aug 2006, 80 lb, 56", incognitos
    DS2 - May 2008, 77 lb, 51.5", Vivo or NBB
    DS3 - June 2011, 46 lb, 43", FF in FR85 or booster training
    DD - May 2015, 19 lb, 29", ) Snugride 30

  23. #16
    Carseat Crazy katymyers's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking about a Suburban

    Quote Originally Posted by aept View Post
    LATCH manual help please?



    We looked at a 2003 Suburban today and we really liked it. It appears it had tether anchors for every seat in the second row, and for the middle seat of the third row. (Sounds like the same as the 2009 Suburban up thread?) can anyone who has a latch manual confirm if I was correct please?



    It would be a 4-5 year vehicle for us so we should get decentlusefulness out of all the seats as we could hopefully put a radian FF third row center (lap belt and top tether) and put the baby in the center of the second row RF.

    I don't have a LATCH manual but I've owned a Tahoe from that era and my sister drives an '03 Suburban and I can confirm that you're correct. One center tether anchor in the third row and then one for each second row seat.


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  24. #17
    CPS Fanatic aept's Avatar
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    Awesome, thanks! I thought that was what I was seeing on the seats but the owner wasn't 100% sure. He said his wife was in charge of car seats
    Ann, mom to 3 big brothers and a baby girl:
    DS1 - Aug 2006, 80 lb, 56", incognitos
    DS2 - May 2008, 77 lb, 51.5", Vivo or NBB
    DS3 - June 2011, 46 lb, 43", FF in FR85 or booster training
    DD - May 2015, 19 lb, 29", ) Snugride 30

  25. #18
    Carseat Crazy katymyers's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking about a Suburban

    Quote Originally Posted by aept View Post
    Awesome, thanks! I thought that was what I was seeing on the seats but the owner wasn't 100% sure. He said his wife was in charge of car seats

    Yeah most people don't have a clue. I see people with sedans with the top tether anchors clearly marked that don't even know they have them. Like what did you think that top strap on your car seat was for???


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