Making kids safer, one question at a time.  Welcome to the Car-Seat.Org community!   Motor Vehicle Crashes are the #1 cause of fatal injury for children and adults, age groups 1 to 34.   Selecting a safe car, minivan or SUV, plus correctly using child restraints and seatbelts may be the most important things you can do to protect your family.   Need help installing an infant, convertible or booster seat?   Looking for carseat reviews or compatibility advice? Need help buying the best and safest car seats for your baby, toddler or older kid?   No question is a bad one, so please click here to ask our experts a question and then join our friendly community of moms, dads, caregivers and advocates in the USA and Canada.   Thank you for visiting; buckle-up and drive safely!


 

Sponsored Ads

+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 13 of 13
  1. #1
    Carseat Crazy marciemp's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    133

    Canada Best seats for 6 and 4 year old

    I have 2 little ones who are almost 6 1/2 and 4 1/2. The 4 year old has been rear facing in a Graco My Ride and the 6 year old harnessed in a Graco Nautilus. We are in a Yukon XL 8 passenger and have 3 older kids (10,10,12) who are in regular belts meeting the 5 step test well.

    The 4 year old is over 35 pounds so getting to the end of her rear facing limits and the 6 year old's seat is going to expire. I tried turning the 4 year old around but her head is way above the seat shell when forward facing in her My Ride for some reason (rear facing she has several inches so I don't know why!?).

    Trying to figure out what I should put them in without spending a ton.

    Should I still be harnessing the 6 year old or will she be as safe in a good booster? We drive in the highway for about 20 minutes nearly every day and in the winter too so I am hesitant to do booster only, am I being overkill here? She is a good girl who sits well if in a booster.

    I am totally lost when it comes to seats that are out there (in Canada) now. What are good harnessed seats with nice tall slots these days? And are cheaper boosters like the high back Turbobooster as safe as the more expensive boosters like Britax? I feel anxiety about turning the 4 year old before ahe is fully 40 pounds and boostering the 6 year old so feel free to give me personal opinions on this if I am being paranoid.

    Thank you
    Marcie, mommy to:
    Michaelyn Sept 2003, Avery Sept 17 2005,
    Noah Sept 2005, Eden Dec 4th 2009, and Emme Dec 9th 2011

  2. # ADS
    Sponsored Ads
    Join Date
    April, 2001
    Posts
    Many
     
     

  3. #2
    CPS Fanatic
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    2,258

    Re: Best seats for 6 and 4 year old

    That IS weird that she has inches of shell above her head rear facing but her head is above the top forward facing!

    But it's not necessarily a problem. The shell just has to be above or even with the tops of her ears for forward facing.

    Has the 6 year old ever ridden in a booster? If not, I'd convert the Nautilus to booster mode and try it a few times before deciding on harness vs. booster for her.

  4. #3
    Carseat Crazy marciemp's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    133
    Yes the 6 year old rides in a Nautilus as a booster in my parents car, in Daddy's truck if he does the school drive and in our car if we are car pooling for field trips and need more room. She does well. I am just concerned about that being her full time ride because we are on the highway so often. If she sits properly in a booster is it much less safe than a harnessed seat?

    I will check the 4 year old forward facin in the My Ride again as I thought the shell had to be above her head fully. It is also very awkward to get into as it has a much higher base than the Nautilus. I guess I am just disappointed in how it seems over all forward facing as we have loved it rear facing. I can see it being OK for a forward facing toddler but for a 4 year old it really fits her much better rear facing.

    Thank you

    Quote Originally Posted by lgenne View Post
    That IS weird that she has inches of shell above her head rear facing but her head is above the top forward facing!

    But it's not necessarily a problem. The shell just has to be above or even with the tops of her ears for forward facing.

    Has the 6 year old ever ridden in a booster? If not, I'd convert the Nautilus to booster mode and try it a few times before deciding on harness vs. booster for her.
    Posted via Mobile Device

  5. #4
    Moderator - CPST Instructor Pixelated's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Manitoba
    Posts
    3,589

    Re: Best seats for 6 and 4 year old

    How much does the 6 year old weigh?

    Where do you have everyone arranged - do the older kids have head restraints? I think that the centre seats of those benches do not have head restraints. Wondering also where you have the harnessed kids and how you manage access to the third row.

    What year is the Yukon - do all positions have lap/shoulder belts or do the centers have lap belts?

    Most kids are just fine in a booster at 6.5...but if you are uncomfortable with it then she's not UNsafe in a harness. When exactly does the Nautilus expire? I'm guessing Dec 31st of this year.
    Jen ~ Canadian CPST-IT with CPSAC

  6. #5
    Carseat Crazy marciemp's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    133

    Re: Best seats for 6 and 4 year old

    The 6 year old is about 48 pounds. The seat will be 6 years old the end of June. We typically have the 2 harnessed seats in the middle row, the forward facing in the middle where there is no head restraint and the rear facing behind the drivers side. My oldest sits in the middle row passenger side or in the front seat if Dad is not with us (she is over 5' 5" and 115 pounds, so adult sized). My twins sit in the back row on the outside seats. It is a 2012 Yukon and the second row bench has a power folding single seat that flips on the passenger side. All seats have shoulder belts and the middle of both benches have no head restraint.
    Marcie, mommy to:
    Michaelyn Sept 2003, Avery Sept 17 2005,
    Noah Sept 2005, Eden Dec 4th 2009, and Emme Dec 9th 2011

  7. #6
    Moderator - CPST Instructor Pixelated's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Manitoba
    Posts
    3,589

    Re: Best seats for 6 and 4 year old

    Do check - but I *think* that the Nautilus would expired Dec 31s of this year. That gives you a bit of extra time to think about it at least.

    I think you'll have a hard time doing a FF Nautilus next to a FF MyRide due to width, and it sounds like you have a good setup going and it would be ideal to keep everyone where they are.

    In that vein, and to help with your worries about booster safety, I'd try to keep the boostered child in the middle, which means getting a booster that does not need a head rest behind it. Those include the Graco Affix and Turbo (same height, Affix has a deeper seat pan and is latchable), Harmony DreamTime (not super tall, but it is narrow), Clek Oobr (decently tall, latchable), Britax Parkway SG and SGL (the "L" is latchable, both are decently tall, has a "secure guard" clip that functions sort of like a crotch buckle), Evenflo Amp or Big Kid (not super tall).

    Even if you don't ultimately keep the boostered child centre, having the option to do so is good, and the above boosters will give you that flexibility. Others (Diono Monterey, for example) require vehicle head rest behind them.

    Does the MyRide install well forward-facing where you want it to? Are you realistically looking at replacing both seats?
    Jen ~ Canadian CPST-IT with CPSAC

  8. #7
    Carseat Crazy marciemp's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    133
    I have only ever seen that the Nautilus expires in 6 years so I will see if I can find more exact info. Does anyone know if it works longer as just a booster too?

    I tried turning the My Ride again and her head is ok in the shell height. I thought it had to be above her head but since it just has to be at her ears or below, we are good as she is right around the top of the shell at the top of her head. If I can find a good seat at the right price I might replace it as I don't particularly love it forward facing. It sits so high and the seat is so sloped back so her knees are so much higher than her bum which I can see eventually causing her legs to hurt dangling. But for now it works. I saw. Britax Pioneer on sale at Canadian Tire so I need to go see how big it is.

    Since we jut need to replace the one seat I am thinking of a latchable Britax Parkway, is it more comfortable that the Turbo Booster (we plan to take a road trip in summer). I could put it in the middle of the back row too, and then put the My ride in the middle of the 2nd row which leaves 4 headrest seats free for other passengers.

    The issue I have with putting the booster in the middle beside the My ride is that there are no latches where the My Ride would be behind the drivers side so it would be seat belt installed and I would be afraid that my 6 year old would accidentally undo the seat belt to the my ride when trying to buckle her booster without us knowing.

    We could do the my ride in the middle of the middle row and the booster behind the drivers seat as long as she can buckle ok, since the My Ride would have full latch install then. That is one issue with a booster compared to a harnessed seat for a bigger kid, getting it buckled easily with other seats or bums in the way!

    On another note I swear vehicle manufacturers don't have kids, why is the Latch in the middle of the double seat and then on the small flipable seat!? makes it impossible to latch install 2 seats in the second row and still have a flipable seat to access the 3rd row!

    Quote Originally Posted by Pixelated View Post
    Do check - but I *think* that the Nautilus would expired Dec 31s of this year. That gives you a bit of extra time to think about it at least.

    I think you'll have a hard time doing a FF Nautilus next to a FF MyRide due to width, and it sounds like you have a good setup going and it would be ideal to keep everyone where they are.

    In that vein, and to help with your worries about booster safety, I'd try to keep the boostered child in the middle, which means getting a booster that does not need a head rest behind it. Those include the Graco Affix and Turbo (same height, Affix has a deeper seat pan and is latchable), Harmony DreamTime (not super tall, but it is narrow), Clek Oobr (decently tall, latchable), Britax Parkway SG and SGL (the "L" is latchable, both are decently tall, has a "secure guard" clip that functions sort of like a crotch buckle), Evenflo Amp or Big Kid (not super tall).

    Even if you don't ultimately keep the boostered child centre, having the option to do so is good, and the above boosters will give you that flexibility. Others (Diono Monterey, for example) require vehicle head rest behind them.

    Does the MyRide install well forward-facing where you want it to? Are you realistically looking at replacing both seats?
    Posted via Mobile Device

  9. #8
    CPS Fanatic
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    2,258

    Re: Best seats for 6 and 4 year old

    For buckling right next to a seat belt install, add a half twist to the buckle stalk on the installed seat. It makes it nearly impossible to unbuckle it by accident.

  10. #9
    Moderator - CPST Instructor Pixelated's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Manitoba
    Posts
    3,589

    Re: Best seats for 6 and 4 year old

    Quote Originally Posted by marciemp View Post
    I have only ever seen that the Nautilus expires in 6 years so I will see if I can find more exact info. Does anyone know if it works longer as just a booster too?
    I *think* that for Nautili of that era it's December 31st six years after date of manufacturer for the harness and high back, but nine for the backless. There will be date stamps in the plastic, or calling Graco to confirm is always a good plan.

    Quote Originally Posted by marciemp View Post
    It sits so high and the seat is so sloped back so her knees are so much higher than her bum which I can see eventually causing her legs to hurt dangling.
    Graco is okay with having the BACK of the seat flush to the vehicle seat even if that results in a gap under the "feet" of the flip out bits on the bottom of the seat, provided the installation is secure and otherwise acceptable re tightness at the belt path. Would that help? It makes it more upright.

    Quote Originally Posted by marciemp View Post
    Since we jut need to replace the one seat I am thinking of a latchable Britax Parkway, is it more comfortable that the Turbo Booster (we plan to take a road trip in summer). I could put it in the middle of the back row too, and then put the My ride in the middle of the 2nd row which leaves 4 headrest seats free for other passengers.
    There is quite a lot of foam in the bum of the Parkway. However, some kids are quite particular (my own aficionado included ) so if possible take your child with you and have him/her sit in some and see what you think! Try them in the vehicle too so you can assess ease of buckling.


    Quote Originally Posted by lgenne View Post
    For buckling right next to a seat belt install, add a half twist to the buckle stalk on the installed seat. It makes it nearly impossible to unbuckle it by accident.
    That is generally not recommended as the release button can then make contact with the car seat and potentially release in a crash sequence, and some manufacturers prohibit a half twist. The manual may address it. One does need to balance that potential risk with the risk of a booster kid unbuckling though, which of course is a big deal. I'd make every effort not to have this setup, or I'd rather cover the buckle with something non-interfering but tactile, so the booster kid would know by feel that they have the wrong buckle. Teaching them to follow the webbing down to the buckle, and, knowing that they are not in trouble if they accidentally pop the sibling's belt and to speak up immediately, are also good approaches.
    Jen ~ Canadian CPST-IT with CPSAC

  11. #10
    CPS Fanatic
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    2,258

    Re: Best seats for 6 and 4 year old

    Quote Originally Posted by Pixelated View Post
    That is generally not recommended as the release button can then make contact with the car seat and potentially release in a crash sequence, and some manufacturers prohibit a half twist. The manual may address it. One does need to balance that potential risk with the risk of a booster kid unbuckling though, which of course is a big deal.

    Really? Which manufacturers? I've never heard of this.

  12. #11
    Moderator - CPST Instructor Pixelated's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Manitoba
    Posts
    3,589

    Re: Best seats for 6 and 4 year old

    Quote Originally Posted by lgenne View Post
    Really? Which manufacturers? I've never heard of this.
    I can't remember to be honest but it is showing up in manuals in newer vehicles here and there.
    Jen ~ Canadian CPST-IT with CPSAC

  13. #12
    CPS Fanatic
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    2,258

    Re: Best seats for 6 and 4 year old

    Quote Originally Posted by Pixelated View Post
    I can't remember to be honest but it is showing up in manuals in newer vehicles here and there.


    Oh, vehicle manufacturers? I interpreted it as car seat manufacturers.

  14. #13
    Carseat Crazy marciemp's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    133

    Re: Best seats for 6 and 4 year old

    I think for safety purposes I will install the car-seat at an latch position, then if the booster needs to go beside it there is no risk to her unbuckling. We have quite the "drive by, boot the kids out of the car and drive away" sequence in the line up at school so I worry she would unbuckle the car-seat sometimes without even knowing.

    It definitely does help to know I can position the My Ride more upright and not worry about the feet touching the seat. It certainly is hard to get tight though with the latch belt they supply! Me sitting in the seat and hubby pulling with all his might and we did get it done though. The tighten/clamping contraption is so big and in totally the wrong spot since it gets stuck on the shell of the seat and it seems to clamp the buckle and not allow it to tighten. Again I think some of these designers don't really try these out in practical situations.

    I think we have decided on a Britax Parkway SGL for the 6 year old and keeping the My Ride for the 4 year old since she still fits it and it was new less than 2 years ago (and she loves her cup holders!). We have time since I found out the Britax is good until the end of the year, although 6 year old is really wanting a booster and loves the pink cheetah print on that Britax!

    Thank you for your help everyone!
    Posted via Mobile Device

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may post new threads
  • You may post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •