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  1. #1
    CPS Fanatic ZephyrBlue's Avatar
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    Angry Please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    I just spoke w/Katherine Hubanks at REcaro. She confirmed that the lock offs are not supposed to lock the seat so that there is no movement whatsoever- only LATCH and top tether will make a seat immovable She did confirm that the manual was wrongly worded and has since been re-written to call them belt guides. She said that no lock off is designed to hold a seat completely tight, that there will always be some "give" and movement and that NHTSA does NOT require that a seat have lock offs. I told her that I was aware that NHTSA does not require lock offs, but if they come as part of the seat design, doesn't NHTSA require that they function how they're designed and described in the manual. She gave me an emphatic NO as an answer. SHe wants me to take pictures of the belt in the lock off and see if there is a gap or space in between the belt and lock off. I told her that there isn't really any space, per se, but that the clip just does not "lock" and hold the belt in place. The belt literally just slips through the lock off. She said that if there is a gap that I can show with a picture, they will send me a new seat. I asked her what will happen if there is no discernable gap; she said that she and Daniella, the engineer, will both call me back and walk me through some things to try and get it to work.

    Techs, what can I do? I have a manual that expressly states that these things are lock offs made to secure a non-locking vechicle seat belt, telling you to "press down on the other armrest and again tighten the shoulder section of the seat belt through the forward-facing lock-off. Repeat as needed until the Como cannot be moved more than one inch in any direction at the vehicle belt path"

    I'm really really upset. They are trying to talk around this whole thing, IMO. I haven't filed a complaint w/NHTSA yet, I wanted to talk w/a manager (or anyone but Gayle) first. What should I do? What is NHTSA's stance on manuals, etc?? Even though the manual has been re-written, doesn't my seat have to function according to my manual? What will sending me a new seat with the same crappy lock offs do if the new manual says that they are indeed not lock offs? Please give me some input
    Last edited by ZephyrBlue; 11-05-2007 at 01:35 PM. Reason: not just a tech issue :)
    11yo DD *69lb* Backless Turbo
    8.5yo DD *45lb* High Back Turbobooster/Pink Monterey
    6yo DS *43lb* Cowmoo Parkway SG/Lizards In Line Turbobooster
    2y4m DD*24lb*RF in an Alma MR 65 and Kathryn RA 55

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  3. #2
    CPS Technician keri1292's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem



    That stinks.

    So, this seat does NOT have lock-offs? You must use a locking clip now, correct? Ack! I'd want my money back. Why is it so hard to make a superior seat with a correct manual?
    Maiya ~ 12y/80lbs ~ Jane Indy Plus ~ Hayden ~ 9y/55lbs ~ SK Monterey ~ Quinn ~ 8y/45lbs ~ RXT ~ Mitchell ~ 18m/24lbs ~ Arctic Cat MA

  4. #3
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    **Not a tech**

    What I would do:

    File a report with the NHTSA

    Tell Katherine you have lost confidence in their product and company and want to wash your hands of the whole situation. It was false advertisement and you expect that you should be able to return your seat with a full refund.

    My reasoning: Obviously they do not know the purpose of a built in lock-in (have them call graco or britax for an explaination)

  5. #4
    CPS Fanatic ZephyrBlue's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    Arly, I told her that my Britax convertibles with built in lock offs DO absolutely hold the seat in place, just as solidly as with a locking vehicle belt and that I've never had this happen with our Britax seats, so I know it IS possible for a locking clip to function correctly!

    keri- that's correct; she told me that the seat is NOT equipped with lock-offs. They are belt guides and are not designed to hold the seat so that there is no "give" or movement. And that NHTSA does not require lock offs, so they are in compliance w/NHTSA standards. I keep thinking that NHTSA does require seats to function according to the manual that is sent with the seat, though, right?
    11yo DD *69lb* Backless Turbo
    8.5yo DD *45lb* High Back Turbobooster/Pink Monterey
    6yo DS *43lb* Cowmoo Parkway SG/Lizards In Line Turbobooster
    2y4m DD*24lb*RF in an Alma MR 65 and Kathryn RA 55

  6. #5
    CPS Fanatic Morganthe's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    Quote Originally Posted by arly1983 View Post
    (have them call graco or britax for an explaination)
    Make it even simpler.

    Tell them to contact their Recaro German headquarters and ask THEM what lock-offs are supposed to do. I know they have them on their European seats. It's a requirement.

    It's a Gurtklemme in German
    Detailed pictures shows what it's supposed to do in this Young Start manual off of the Recaro.co.uk site -- German & English text. #1.1-1.5

    Their Young Expert seat is pretty darn identical to the Como/Signo style.
    Its manual demonstrates too, how it's supposed to be installed with the lock-off.

    Recaro really needs to get its act together
    My Munchkin -- Nov 2008--5 years, 45.5", 42lbs
    Current Stats: 12 years old /5'5/ 115lbs/ Seatbelt

    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." Phillip K. Dick

  7. #6
    CPS Technician Jewels's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    Quote Originally Posted by ZephyrBlue View Post
    keri- that's correct; she told me that the seat is NOT equipped with lock-offs. They are belt guides and are not designed to hold the seat so that there is no "give" or movement.
    Well if the seat doesn't indeed have built-in lock-offs why didn't the seat come with a locking clip to provide you with a way to lock the seatbelt properly

  8. #7
    CPS Technician cryswilkins's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    I am not a tech, but I would want a full refund and file a complaint.

    The whole situation is really sucky.

    Crystal, CPST Mama to Zoe 11/30/2006 , Ollie 1/3/2010 , Eli 9/24/2012 and Baby Isabel 7/23/2015

  9. #8
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    If I'm not mistaken a seat either comes with a locking clip OR a lock off because they both do the same thing---provide a locked seat belt pre-crash.

    I'd say go ahead and report it to NHTSA. They need to know about this problem to get it corrected for other parents.

    Susan
    Mommy to my angel, Ethan Daniel (8/5/07-8/6/07)
    Mommy to Nicholas (12-29-08) RF'ed to 2.75 yrs in Graco MyRide(crashed) and a True Fit Primier. FF in the TFP and a Graco Nautilus Elite. Nicholas is 2.75 yrs old, 32 lbs and 36" tall.
    Child Passenger Safety Tech

  10. #9
    CPS Technician TXDani's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    Wow this whole deal just sucks! I am sorry you are dealing with this...what a headache!
    I would report to NHTSA and continue to call Recaro until they agree to return the seat for you. This issue is not the retailers fault and Recaro really needs to step up and own this issue. If you can get an e-mail address I would draft up a nice letter and do not fail to mention that you are a part of a large on-line community full of CPST's and other parents who *were* very excited about this new seat. Let them know you are giving updates of how they are handling this situation and warning other to not buy any Recaro seats until this is resolved. I think had they owned this from the beginning and not fed you a bunch of bull it wouldn't have been so bad but now that they keep trying to act like they were never lock-off's is just insulting to their consumers.

  11. #10
    Moderator MomToEliEm's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    I keep seeing references to a locking clip being required to be supplied with a seat if it doesn't have a locking mechanism. Why would a locking clip have to come with a seat if lockoffs are not provided on the seat? My britax regent doesn't have lockoffs, yet I never received a locking clip with it.

  12. #11
    CPS Technician Namegirl's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    This is disappointing.

    I really hope Recaro is taking all of this stuff into consideration (RF tether, lockoffs, etc.) and comes out with a great improved design in a year or so.
    Namegirl
    DD in Turbo
    DS in Turbo, Pioneer
    DS in Diono
    DD in Britax B-Safe

  13. #12
    CPS Technician An Aurora's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    A locking clip or a built-in lockoff accomplish the same goal--provide a locked seat belt pre-crash, as the PP said. Both of these are designed to break or move in a crash, because the seat belt will take over at that point and go into ELR mode.

    I would absolutely argue with them on this--it's not a matter of "whoopsie, my bad, just go get a locking clip and use it instead." Other people not as knowledgeable/concerned/familiar with car seats are going to use this "built in lock off" and not recognize that it is not performing like it should, and that they need a locking clip. To me, that's a pretty big safety issue.
    Anna~ RN and expired CPST (hoping to recert soon!)

  14. #13
    CPS Technician CDNTech's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    I would absolutely report this to NHTSA *immediately*. They have been given adequate time to deal with this *huge* safety problem and have done nothing.

    I don't know the full regulations in the US, but in Canada if a seat does not come with fully functioning, can take the place of a locking clip, lock-offs... then the seat *must* come with a locking clip.

    Recaro just went even further down the tubes in my books.
    Jen, Former CDN CRS Tech
    DS1 /02, Seatbelt in the driver's seat now!
    DS2 /05, Seatbelt

    DS3 /12, Britax Frontier/Parkway SG
    DD1 /15, Rfing Peg PVC

  15. #14
    Admin - CPS Technician joolsplus3's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    It's not 'required', but it's a common practice for carseats without lockoffs to provide locking clips. Britax may be the renegade here, I'm pretty sure every other brand gives you a locking clip with the seat if there's no lockoff (and even if there is...the Graco Safeseat 1 may only require a locking clip when used baseless in some cars, and they are polite enough to toss one in the package... )
    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

  16. #15
    CPS Technician tl01's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    I would tell her that the seat was sold under false representation. You read the manual and it said that the seat had lock offs. How is the consumer supposed to know what they are if they are not what is stated. Clearly, you need to be able to read the seat specifications and then determine if that will work for your car. Since they wrote the manual wrong... that is not your fault.
    DS 7.5 years 71 lbs FFing in:
    a Frontier90, PWSGL 2013
    DS2 3.5 years 35 lbs FFing in:
    Foonf, Frontier 85, SureRide

  17. #16
    CPS Fanatic ZephyrBlue's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    I filed a complaint w/NHTSA and with the Federal Trade Comission, on the advisement of NHTSA. IMO, this is a huge safety concern. And I read the new, revised Como manual online and the only difference is that the words "lock off" are replaced by "belt guides" The manual still tells you to pull the slack from the belt and use the belt guide to help secure the seat until the the seat does not move more than 1".

    Still waiting to hear back from Recaro now that I sent the pictures.
    11yo DD *69lb* Backless Turbo
    8.5yo DD *45lb* High Back Turbobooster/Pink Monterey
    6yo DS *43lb* Cowmoo Parkway SG/Lizards In Line Turbobooster
    2y4m DD*24lb*RF in an Alma MR 65 and Kathryn RA 55

  18. #17
    Carseat Crazy jdchic3's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    Gah! I am SO glad I didn't buy one. Between the lockoff, no RF tether, twisty straps and straps that are too long for average sized infants I'd be prety bitter. I would definitely report them. Like a pp said, there are lots of parents who are not nearly as conscious of safety issues as us and would install the seat with the 'lock off' and not notice that it doesn't keep the seat secure. BIG safety issue. If they don't at least issue a recall to replace the manual and someone who doesn't know they're not actually lock offs gets in an accident where, heaven forbid, something happens to their child then Recaro would be in deep crap.
    DD 04-05 66 lbs/4' 6"
    DS1 03-07 66 lbs/4' 3"
    DS2 04-09 49 lbs/3' 9"

  19. #18
    CPS Technician strollerfreak's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    Quote Originally Posted by joolsplus3 View Post
    It's not 'required', but it's a common practice for carseats without lockoffs to provide locking clips. Britax may be the renegade here, I'm pretty sure every other brand gives you a locking clip with the seat if there's no lockoff (and even if there is...the Graco Safeseat 1 may only require a locking clip when used baseless in some cars, and they are polite enough to toss one in the package... )
    Agreed...and the other major point is that while Britax may be the renegade in not just providing them with the seat, they DO point out in the manual that you may *need* one or a BSC to properly install the seat.

    Recaro isn't providing one, nor are they pointing out that you may need one in *your* manual so that is a SERIOUS flaw that NEEDS to be addressed & reported to NHTSA. I'd be curious to see the "new" manual to see if it does state that you may need a LC or BSC to properly install the seat if the vehicle doesn't have locking seatbelts.

    Wow....I'm glad that I wasn't waiting on pins & needles for this seat only to have this happen.
    ~Mel, Ex-CPST, Triathlete & Mom of 5ReiKids + 1E!!!

  20. #19
    CPST Instructor azgirl71's Avatar
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    I would report this to NHTSA. That is misleading the consumer , not to mention they are not providing you a way to lock your seatbelt when installing your car seat.
    Lisa - CPSTI
    Mom to Tucker, 5 years old, 29.2 lbs, 39.25 inches tall who has a variety of different carseats to ride in.
    My new grandson is my signature photo

  21. #20
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: Techs, please read: Recaro's new answer to my lock-off problem

    Agh. I have a Como. My seat belts lock, but still I paid for a seat that I was told has lock offs and it doesn't. I'm watching for any updates, and then I'll decide if I'm going to return it or not. I'm not liking this at all.

    I think I'll call Recaro and add my voice to the "what, they're not lock-offs" chorus.

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