Question Can a 2 yr old be comfortable using the Britax Frontier 85?

Lillian George

New member
My babies are 363 days apart and are turning 1 and 2 in October. My older daughter is currently using a Britax Boulevard and we Love it but we hate to spend all the $ on a second one for my younger daughter once she turns 1... Is it alright to buy the Britax Frontier 85 for my oldest to use once she turns 2? She's already at the min weight limit now, 25 lbs, but is it comfortable for younger children? Trying it in the store is one thing, she doesnt sit still, but does anyone have any experience using it with a younger child??? :confused: I just hate to buy another expensive car seat and then have to buy 2 boosters in a few years. We put safety ahead of price, but still...

Thanks!
 
ADS

wendytthomas

Admin - CPST Instructor
Staff member
I wouldn't. I'd still have them both rear facing. So keep the two year old in the Boulevard, or buy something else.

Of my top five favorites, only some versions of one (the Radian) come close to the Boulevard's price tag. The other four are all less than $200. I'd look at the Learning Curve True Fit, Graco My Ride, Evenflo Momentum, Safety 1st Complete Air, and Sunshine Kids Radians.

Wendy
 

Jillybean25

New member
How tall is your oldest child I would want to keep my child rearfacing as long as possible could you mabye buy a truefit or a myride as the myride has a rearfacing limit of 40 pounds and if money isn't an issue I would consider a radian as my 3 year old is 38 and 1/2 inches and 33 pounds and is happily rearfacing in her radian.
 

rachelandtyke

Well-known member
My DD has a True Fit and she still fits at nearly 5 and I expect her to continue to use it for at least another year before she is ready for a booster. She technically could still rear face in it, but I turned her after she turned 4.

For most of the above seats, it will get many years of use both rear and forward facing before a booster is needed and the combined price would not be significantly more than if you got a Frontier now.
 

armywife12

New member
It was/is comfortable for my son but I wouldn't buy the seat for a 2 yr old that is only 25lbs. My story is kind of long but we used the Frontier briefly (about 2 months) for my son when he was 25 months old and 35lbs (36-37 inches). He was still RF in a Graco MyRide but FF for those 2 months in the Frontier. Hubby deployed, we went to one vehicle, and DS went back to RF full time. In those two months, we really enjoyed the seat and can't wait to use it again when DS gets turned around. He is now 34 months old, 39 inches and 37lbs RF in a MyRide and XTSL. He'll go forward in the Frontier in hubby's vehicle when he gets home from Afghanistan at the end of the year *(when DS will be close to 3.5 yrs old). Anywho, although we LOVE our Frontier, I would never put a small 2 yr old in it. I would RF that child, no questions. My favorite ERF seats are the MyRide, Complete Air, Radians, and True Fits. A 25lb 2 yr old should have loads of room in all of those seats given a normal torso length. When I look back at pics of DS in his Frontier, he just looks so small even though he was quite tall and heavy.
 

AmbersMommy

New member
I am sure she would be fine in a Frontier if you don't want to keep her RFing. However, I personally I buy another seat to keep her RFing for awhile. But its totally up to you. There are a lot of nice seats out there to keep her ERFing in if you wanted to go that route. Wendy gave you some great ones. My 4.5yr old rides in a Frontier 85 and loves it. They are nice seats.
 

Lemonade

New member
My older child, who is 4 and small for his age (33# and 40"), rides in the FR80 (the same, basically, as the FR85). DD, who will be 2 next week, is 26 lbs and 34 inches or so. I have tried her in the FR and she fits - the harness can go low enough to fit her properly and she rode in it once on a short ride. However, she fits better in her BLVD. Her legs fold at the edge and it just looks like it fits her better. I imagine this will be the case for a bit longer. My DS got the FR when he was turning 3 and it was just fine. He's been in it ever since with no problem. If you are going to put your 2 year old FF, then definitely go with the FR because it's the best long term solution and an awesome seat. A bigger BLVD for the most part. But if you're considering RF longer, then the PP has some good suggestions that are less $$ than the BLVD. I'd personally look at the My Ride 65 for leg room. Radians are great seats, but personally, I hate them. I'm a Britax girl:)
 

Carrie_R

Ambassador - CPS Technician
If your dd is just 25lbs at not-yet-two, it's possible the 85lb limit is overkill. What are both of your girls' stats? (Height, weight, general body type?) What is your younger daughter riding in now?

Is your oldest DD still rear-facing? If you turned her at a year, are you aware why we are all suggesting you RF her? (If she's already FFing, at 19 months, we would strongly suggest turning her back.)
 

aeormsby

New member
I agree with that a RF seat would be much safer. This is a picture of my 2.5yo DS trying out our Frontier (it's my 4yo's seat)
100_1620.JPG


He's 2.5yo & just at 25-26lbs. It's on the lowest setting and the seat is super deep, his ankles probably hit at the end of the seat. He's still VERY comfortable RF in his Marathon in the car and we'll keep him that way until he hits the RF weight limit. It's also much more comfortable when he falls asleep in the RF seat than DD looks when she falls asleep in the Frontier.
 

finn

New member
I wouldn't ff a 2 year old. You guys are lucky in that you have a big range of very reasonably priced seats that have high rear facing weights, I would find one that fits you dd & your car and buy that instead of a frontier.
 

icnee

New member
Hi Just another mom encourageing the ERFing. They are much safeER when RFing and alot more comfy head slump is not so bad when sleeping and their legs have the support from the vehical seat back so they are not just dangleing (babies and toddlers dont like their legs dangleing). In my siggy you can see my youer 3 happily rfing at 4, 2.5 then she is now 3 and still rfing, and 1.5.
 

Kat_Momof3

New member
I agree... I'd get a convertible to keep him rearfacing longer... like the sunshine kids Radians, Graco Myride,etc.

I wouldn't rearface a kid until at least 3yrs old and at least 30lbs... if they hit the weight limit of their convertible seat, then it would depend on the ability to afford another rearfacing seat.
 

poohbearkrazy

New member
I agree... I'd get a convertible to keep him rearfacing longer... like the sunshine kids Radians, Graco Myride,etc.

I wouldn't rearface a kid until at least 3yrs old and at least 30lbs... if they hit the weight limit of their convertible seat, then it would depend on the ability to afford another rearfacing seat.

I think you meant forward face. I just didn't want OP to get confused. :thumbsup:
 

Lillian George

New member
Hi all,
Ok, for starters, my 19 month old is currently 25 lbs, at last check up she was in the 80th percentile for height and the 70th for weight... Shes a big girl I guess, she can't fit into most 2T clothing because they run too skinny for her. Her little sis is 7 months old and 18 lbs and right in the 50th percentile, I cannot remember their exact heights.

I would LOVE to RF both my girls. Unfortunately I am stuck driving a 2006 Jeep Liberty and when my toddlers boulevard is RF the front passenger seat is literally 6" from the dash board, incredibly unsafe for any front passenger. Every seat we tried RF seemed to do the same thing so I chose the seat I felt was the safest and most comfortable and she has to face forward. Does anyone know of a car seat with really good safety and comfort ratings that can RF in an older Jeep Liberty?????

We tried my older daughter in both the Graco Nautilius and the Frontier today, they both seemed like good choices, the nautilius seemed like a better fit for a younger child but my mind is not made up. Maybe I will try again to find a RF seat but it seems impossible! Thank you all for all your feedback so far!
 

wendytthomas

Admin - CPST Instructor
Staff member
When you rear face, do you put your kids more upright than the 45 degree newborn angle? I've found there is usually *some* seat to fit rear facing in just about everything, and if you can fit an infant seat in you can fit an upright convertible. You don't need to match the line or the bubble or whatever level indicator the convertible has for a 19 month old. They can sit as upright as 30 degrees (35 in the case of the True Fit).

For snug backseats I'd look at the Safety 1st Complete Air, which fits in very small front to back spaces. I'd also look at the Evenflo Triumph Advance and the Evenflo Momentum. The Graco My Ride can go pretty upright. I would avoid the Sunshine Kids Radian because it's very large front to back.

What seat is your 19 month old in now?

Wendy
 

Lillian George

New member
She's currently using a britax boulevard. Huge, I know... I think the style of it will always give it an incline but it is adjustable to some extent...My younger daughter is using a chicco keyfit 30 and that does fit behind the drivers seat, I dont have much leg room but its not uncomfortable and it works. I'll see if I can play with the incline any more on the boulevard tomorrow...

I do realize how much safer it is to rf and I really regret not being able to at the moment. Sadly, I think I could safely say all of the other moms that I know dont rf their toddlers by choice though, not necessity, how common is it really to continue to rf after the first year? I showed my husband and mother-in-law articles on it and they didnt find it to be a huge deal either...
 

wendytthomas

Admin - CPST Instructor
Staff member
Ok, lucky for you the Boulevard is easy to get much more upright. You're right that it needs to stay in the recline mode, but if you pull the seat away from the seat bight (the crease), and add weight to the feet area of the seat, you can usually get it as upright as 30 degrees. I've put it in some tiny cars (the tiniest being a Porsche 911). It fits. In the 911 I was eating the dash. In everything else it goes in well. Coach class on airplanes, Volvos, Subarus, all sorts of tiny backseats. It's one that does fit well in small spaces. You just need to pull it out a bit, lay the base flat on your backseat, about an inch from the bight, and as you're adding weight to the seat push down at the feet.

Let us know how that goes. You're welcome to post pictures of your install and we can see if we see anything obvious that can help you out.

Once we get your 19 month old sorted out, we can talk about what to get your baby. Like we said before, there are many cheaper options that will last longer and fit well in small spaces than the Boulevard. I'd probably look into a Complete Air or an Evenflo Momentum for the baby (both at BRU, so you can try them out before you buy, make sure they fit). At seven months she doesn't need a 45 degree angle either, she can be fully upright as long as she's comfortable with it.

You can also see if there's a board tech near you to help out. http://www.car-seat.org/showthread.php?t=59135&highlight=technician I'd love to, but I'm clear across the country.

Wendy
 

Carrie_R

Ambassador - CPS Technician
I do realize how much safer it is to rf and I really regret not being able to at the moment. Sadly, I think I could safely say all of the other moms that I know dont rf their toddlers by choice though, not necessity, how common is it really to continue to rf after the first year? I showed my husband and mother-in-law articles on it and they didnt find it to be a huge deal either...

I don't know any other parents in real life who RF either, with the exception of my two daycare parents... who do it because I said they should, lol. (They do know why, it's not just blind faith, but they trust me pretty implicitly so if I say stay RF, they stay RF.)

Unfortunately it's not common to continue RFing after the first year. That's something that I would imagine everyone on this board would like to see change... and very, very slowly -- one parent at a time -- progress is being made. I'm one of those "converted," barely a year ago my kids did not have the benefit of the knowledge I now have (from this board and later my tech class.) I think part of the reason I'm so passionate about it is that people just don't know; if they are aware of it and don't find it to be a "huge deal" then I think in most cases they don't understand all of the "pieces," so to speak. They don't understand that putting kids in the car is the most dangerous thing we do with them; they don't understand WHY you should RF, the anatomy and physics of it; they don't understand what can happen to a FFing child vs a RFing child in that same collision.

RF is not a magic pill, it will not save every child in every crash, but it is a tool that we can use to make our kids that much safer while they are doing the most dangerous thing that they will do for the next three decades. For that, I'm willing to be the odd one out, and I'm willing to preach on it online and in real life, and I'm willing to not really care what other people think. (I mean... when you pile six kids out of an SUV you get weird looks already, so why add the fact that your three year old is sitting backwards, lol!)

If you can, I'd show your DH Joel's Journey, the video on youtube narrated by his grandfather. (Youtube doesn't work on this computer or else I'd link it.) That video is the one that affects me the most, personally, and reminds me why I bother on days when it just feels like too much hassle. If you can get him on your side, MIL may be easier to convince.

FWIW, the MyRide, TrueFit and Complete Air all tend to install with a fairly small amount of front-to-back room. If you can't get your Boulevard to work, you could try those. :) And I second Wendy's suggestion of finding a tech (preferably one from this board, who won't act like you're nuts for ERFing) to help you get a good, upright install. Not sure where you are, but chances are we have someone close. :)
 

Maedze

New member
She's currently using a britax boulevard. Huge, I know... I think the style of it will always give it an incline but it is adjustable to some extent...My younger daughter is using a chicco keyfit 30 and that does fit behind the drivers seat, I dont have much leg room but its not uncomfortable and it works. I'll see if I can play with the incline any more on the boulevard tomorrow...

I do realize how much safer it is to rf and I really regret not being able to at the moment. Sadly, I think I could safely say all of the other moms that I know dont rf their toddlers by choice though, not necessity, how common is it really to continue to rf after the first year? I showed my husband and mother-in-law articles on it and they didnt find it to be a huge deal either...

It's slowly catching on :). I've turned many toddlers and preschoolers back around safely rear facing in the last couple of years.

It really is a 'huge' deal, I promise, otherwise there wouldn't be so much fuss about your question. The safety difference is in the spine. Forward facing, her head is whipped forward in an accident, doing severe, even catastrophic spinal injury. Rear facing, her spine is nicely cradled.

Once she gets to around 3-4 years, her cervical vertabrae have fused and are much stronger, and that whipping action isn't nearly as likely to have serious consequences.

The Boulevard can be installed VERY upright, and I cross my heart pinkie swear to you that you CAN put it in your Liberty without affecting front seat room at all.

To make you feel not so alone, I have three kids, almost six, four, and almost three.

The big guy rear faced to almost 2.5, when he reached the max limit for rear facing on his seat.

My daughter rear faced to 4 years, when she reached the limit (40 pounds, rear facing)

My little guy is 31 pounds, about to turn three, still rear facing, and will continue to ride that way until his fourth birthday.

It would have to be an extremely serious, life threatening situation (fleeing zombies?) before I would put a one year old or two year old forward facing in any car.
 

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