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  1. #1
    Carseat Crazy
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    Turning forward before 4

    I have a 3.7 yr old that I am debating turning FF. However, my reasons are kind of shallow. It seems like the Fllo is taking up more room back to front than it used to (could it be her extra weight pushing the carseat back?) and every single ride she climbs in the seat and faces forward and I have to threaten/bribe for a few minutes to get her to rear face. She has tons of room left in the seat so I feel like I am wasting the seat and also I am very aware of the safety of rear facing. I know it's always safer to RF, but is it still *much* safer at her age? She is extremely aware of how all her friends ride in the car and I know it's lame to let a 3 yr olds tantrums dictate safety….but it's a big pain, lol. Basically I am just trying to figure out if it's still way safer to RF or if she is past that very risky age.

    My second question is how do you deal with younger siblings RF while an older sibling FF?? I have a strong willed 17 month old and if my 3 yr old is wanting to be like her friends, what is my youngest going to do when she is old enough to realize her sister FF? What do you do about the car DVD? Never let either child know it exists or just let the FF watch?

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  3. #2
    Carseat Crazy katymyers's Avatar
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    I'm kind in your exact situation. My daughter turns 4 in October and is TINY (not even 30 lbs and incredibly short). I recently turned her forward facing in her Boulevard because she was wiggling her way out of the straps while I was driving. If she was younger I might have been more motivated to discipline her and just keep her rear facing but I just gave in and turned her. It's actually been really nice. My younger daughter isn't happy about it, she will climb into one of my other kids' seats every time we go somewhere and just give me a look like she's daring me to move her. I just put her in her seat and tell her she's not big enough yet for one of theirs. So far that's working. She's almost two but not even 20 lbs yet so she's out of luck for a while if she wants to be turned.


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  4. #3
    CPS Fanatic
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    I'm currently a passenger in a car with a FFer (5.5 yo) and two RFer (3 and almost 8 months). We're rolling down the interstate. They're all asleep, but hours of video were watched by the older two today. The 3 yo is outboard in a Radian. He just watches over his shoulder.

  5. #4
    Carseat Crazy mping's Avatar
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    My son rf until 4 and then he asked to turn. His big sister was 6. He didn't care that she was ff. he watched the DVD player over his shoulder.
    E 3/21/06 4'6" 62lbs Graco Affix/Harmony Literider/Graco Turbo Booster/Bubble Bum
    G 1/31/08 3'5" 32lbs Britax Frontier 80//Graco Turbo Booster/Graco Affix
    J 10/23/14 17lbs 26in Britax Boulevard CT

  6. #5
    CPS Technician Brigala's Avatar
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    We honestly don't know how much safer RF is than FF at this age. The difference could be minimal, it could be the same as the "5x safer" we quote for 1 year old kids, or it could be an even bigger difference. We simply don't have that answer.

    We don't do DVDs in the car so I can't speak to that. I'm personally a fan of kids looking out the window but that's obviously just my opinion and means nothing for other families.
    Mom to 2 adults and 2 little kids.
    Tall 8 year old in Incognito; Petite 3 year old RF in CA65

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  8. #6
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    My younger nanny girl always wants to ride in her older sister's seat. Even when they were both rf. if I let her do it once she would ask every ride for months. I just kept saying no.

    I would keep the DVD player a secret for as long as you can.

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  10. #7
    Carseat Crazy katymyers's Avatar
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    Quote Originally Posted by Brigala View Post
    We honestly don't know how much safer RF is than FF at this age. The difference could be minimal, it could be the same as the "5x safer" we quote for 1 year old kids, or it could be an even bigger difference. We simply don't have that answer.

    We don't do DVDs in the car so I can't speak to that. I'm personally a fan of kids looking out the window but that's obviously just my opinion and means nothing for other families.

    I forgot to add my thing on DVD players. Personally I'm with you. I'm not a fan at all and I will purposely avoid buying a vehicle with one at all. So my vote is to pretend it doesn't exist.


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  11. #8
    CPS Technician Brigala's Avatar
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    Yes, I've vetoed a few cars that had that feature. I mean, I can see their place sometimes. I have allowed a portable DVD player on a VERY long trip but only because there was only one kid in the car. Usually the portable DVD player is for the hotel room. And nothing would drive me batty faster than being asked to watch DVDs on every trip to the grocery store.
    Mom to 2 adults and 2 little kids.
    Tall 8 year old in Incognito; Petite 3 year old RF in CA65

  12. #9
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    My kids know that videos are for long trips only. Every once in awhile they'll try to convince me that a 10 minute drive is a long trip, but it's rare.

  13. #10
    Carseat Crazy katymyers's Avatar
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    Quote Originally Posted by Brigala View Post
    Yes, I've vetoed a few cars that had that feature. I mean, I can see their place sometimes. I have allowed a portable DVD player on a VERY long trip but only because there was only one kid in the car. Usually the portable DVD player is for the hotel room. And nothing would drive me batty faster than being asked to watch DVDs on every trip to the grocery store.

    I'm currently looking at a newer Odyssey and the salesman at the dealership was SHOCKED when I told him I wanted the base level LX instead of the EX-L. He seriously tried to sway me with the DVD player, my husband laughed at him. Apparently no one goes for the LX and the one I want has been on their lot for almost a year.


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  15. #11
    CPS Fanatic Kel's Avatar
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    Hello! I have six kids. I avoid did players at all cost, lol. They get annoying. Kids start to forgetting how to entertain themselves I think. Then they beg for a movie everywhere you go.

    If I had a long trip planned. I would MAYBE give each child a portable dvd player, with head phones.

    My bigger kids bring a notebook and pens, ect.. or sometimes their kindles.

    Also, my dd is 3 yrs 3 months. Older brothers only 22 months older. She doesn't mind him ff. I told her that's how they see each other better. Hth.
    Kelley- mom of seven!

  16. #12
    Carseat Crazy mping's Avatar
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    We only use ours when we are driving 3+ hours.
    E 3/21/06 4'6" 62lbs Graco Affix/Harmony Literider/Graco Turbo Booster/Bubble Bum
    G 1/31/08 3'5" 32lbs Britax Frontier 80//Graco Turbo Booster/Graco Affix
    J 10/23/14 17lbs 26in Britax Boulevard CT

  17. #13
    Moderator - CPS Technician
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    Quote Originally Posted by Brigala View Post
    We honestly don't know how much safer RF is than FF at this age. The difference could be minimal, it could be the same as the "5x safer" we quote for 1 year old kids, or it could be an even bigger difference. We simply don't have that answer.

    We don't do DVDs in the car so I can't speak to that. I'm personally a fan of kids looking out the window but that's obviously just my opinion and means nothing for other families.
    Glad I read the other replies before typing my own; this is pretty much exactly what I was going to say.

    Our van doesn't have a DVD player, but if we did we wouldn't use it if there were RF kids who couldn't see it. They do like listening to books on CD that we get from the library.
    Cutie #1 (13 years) 5-stepping
    Cutie #2 (10 years) riding in a Safety 1st Incognito

    Cutie #3 (7 years) riding in a Chicco KidFit
    Cutie #4 (6 years) riding in a Frontier
    Cutie #5 (3 years) riding in a Nuna Rava

  18. #14
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    As far as the dvd player my daughter was able to watch it in her rear facing mirror. Lol! She was rear facing until four and never seemed to complain. She did that or turned her head around in her Myride and was able to see it well enough that way.

    We also only use it for trips that are two hours or more. They know that and don't ask for it more.
    Mom to Allison 02/17/08 Parkway booster
    Annelise 01/19/11 FF harnesed in a Britax Frontier
    William 03/10/15 RF in a Clek Filo

  19. #15
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    We never tried a DVD because we have FF and RF kids and have for a long time, so that was easy. We said we didn't want one and we don't have one.

    As for FF or RF, my RF kids have never complained to be FF. More like the other way around, lol. My only RF now are a newborn and a 2 YO. My 2 YO, I have to have outboard so I lift her in. She will run off or who knows what. She will NOT climb into her seat. She'd more likely climb into another kid's seat. So I place her into hers.

    We have the Fllo. I kind of think I'll just keep her RF for a long time..since she is outboard it's no trouble really. The key then is I'll need a RF seat for baby once he outgrows his bucket, and he's the 8th seat so limited in what fits. And I don't know I can lug him to the middle for a long time. It's a tough one. At any rate I KNOW my toddler get to 3 RF. But she is so tall she might not even fit much past that anyway.
    Seatbelt and 59" (9 YO)
    Harmony Youth (8 YO)/Clek Olli (6YO)
    Harmony Dreamtime (5 YO)
    Clek Fllo (3 YO, RF)/Graco 40 (15 months)
    + 2 Recaro Performance boosters in spare car

  20. #16
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    Quote Originally Posted by Brigala View Post
    We honestly don't know how much safer RF is than FF at this age. The difference could be minimal, it could be the same as the "5x safer" we quote for 1 year old kids, or it could be an even bigger difference. We simply don't have that answer.
    At what age/size does it become debatable? Past 2yrs?

  21. #17
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    We recently turned at 3.7--not for any especially good reason except that my son asked several times, and we had agreed on three as our RFing goal so we were well past that. He has an inch or so left RFing in his Marathon and probably would have made it to four, but we felt okay turning him at that age (coupled with the fact that we can fit our seats side by side when they face opposite directions but not when they are both RFing, so we were able to move him to the center). I did try to hunt down data on that last few months to see if it was worth trying to stick it out, but couldn't find any. My little one is quite a bit younger, so not old enough to have a strong opinion on it (though he seems to really enjoy having his brother right next to him). Given their age gap they will almost always be in different types of seats, though; it just is what it is.

    My older one did ask if he could ride RFing on an upcoming vacation when we will be doing a lot of driving and I initially said yes, but just weighed him and found out he's maxed out the RFing weight limit of his travel seat, so FFing it is. He likes looking out FFing but prefers the recline of the seat RFing; we switched him back and forth for a while until I got fed up with that and told him he had to choose a direction and stick with it.

    We don't have a DVD player so no advice there. My son was extremely impressed with the backup camera that he'd never known existed, though, and after the first ride, kept asking me to "put that car show back on." It took a while to figure that one out!

  22. #18
    Admin - CPS Technician joolsplus3's Avatar
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    Quote Originally Posted by AllieK View Post
    At what age/size does it become debatable? Past 2yrs?
    This has a lot of good links, most say 2, one says 4, one says 3...unfortunately there's really not any newer studies, these are getting kind of old, seats have changed in the blink of an eye, research take so much longer! http://carseatblog.com/5168/why-rear...rf-link-guide/
    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

  23. #19
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    Well, I don't know if this is brilliant parenting or if she will be scarred for life, but I showed her one of those videos of a RF kid in the front seat and a FF in the backseat. I didn't get into death or internal decapitation obviously, but I did tell her the kid FF probably got a lot of boo boos and she could very much see the difference. I asked her which way she wanted to sit and she said RF, which might have just been in the moment, but I think since we have gone this far I might as well persevere to the magic 4 number. I am going to blow the preschool carline lady's mind! The only time I did the car line last year she told DD to "go under the seat and find hers", lol.

    When is Consumer Reports due with their new reviews? I am really interested in how the front seat back interaction is going to affect a heavy RF kid. The new test includes a front seat and I am hoping the results (if not good) lead to convertibles with load legs now that we are RF kids to 50 lbs!

    How in the world do kids turn around enough to see the DVD screen? Is that not "out of position?" I keep reading all the stuff about not boostering until kid is mature enough and it seems like twisting the head and neck around is not good? But I am totally impressed they can do it and maybe it's fine!?

  24. #20
    Admin - CPS Technician joolsplus3's Avatar
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    Re: Turning forward before 4

    The new CR report just came out BUT it wasn't with the new bench. So annoying!
    Our DVD angled enough from the ceiling (aiming down towards the floor almost, 2003 Ody) my RFers just had to just angle their heads a little, if any, to see it (Leap Frog videos... or sing-song foreign language DVD's, I figured a little trapped learning to keep them quiet and me undistracted was a good use of our time, personally).
    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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