Question Four kids, not enough tethers. Who gets one?

Jan06twinmom

New member
Jenny -

Any chance that you would be able to put your DD in a booster seat? At almost 6yo, I would prefer to have her in a booster seat instead of having any of the children without a top tether. However, I know that there are medical issues that may require her to stay harnessed for now.

Melanie
 

Jeanum

Admin - CPS Technician Emeritus
Staff member
Hi Jenny. Have you looked into the TA retrofit some c-s.org members have achieved to add an additional tether anchor or two in the third row of their relatively recent model year Chrysler/Dodge minivans? I'm blanking on who has posted about doing but I believe it has been accomplished by both U.S. and Canadian members who own the same version Chrysler minivan as yours if you do a search here.
 

Genevieve

CPST Instructor
In your situation I would give the lightest/shortest/youngest kid the spot without the tether.

I'm really curious to see what your method and tricks for installing a FR85 in the third row of that can are. I can do it with the off center LATCH, but I've tried many, many times to do a seatbelt install back there but I have never gotten an acceptable install. Please let me know how you do it!
 

Mommy0608

New member
I appreciate all the help. There are a few things I'd like to clarify. The second lightest child is also the oldest. Some have said the lightest/youngest kids - it kind of has to be lightest OR youngest. My DD is oldest and definitely tallest, but is second lightest. I'm thinking the two 3yo kids weigh the same, just under 40lbs.

DD does have a medical condition that could prevent her from being in proper position. She also severely lacks the impulse control to sit properly in a booster. Plus, the FR in booster mode is the only booster I have access to and it has a 40lb minimum which she does not meet.

As far as making my own kids safest, I disagree. All kids in my van get equal consideration in who gets tethers. That's why I asked for help. :)

Also, there's a chance I may only have 3 kids. The 4th (one of the 3yo) will only be with me if his mom goes into labor which in this case, is an emergency (I am their only option for taking him).

I'll play around with it tonight. Hopefully I can leave one seat in the off-set LATCH position and just do one untethered, only using that seat if I have all of the kids.

Oh and all of the kids besides my DD are about the same height, give or take an inch or two at most.

Again, thanks for all of the insight. I am still undecided. There are several good points made in this thread that have different solutions. I will have to give it more thought.
 

ketchupqueen

CPST and ketchup snob
Staff member
If one kid is an emergency-only rider the three frequent riders would get the tethers, if there was no way to rear-face. Though if I could I'd rear-face the youngest or second choice, put one kid in a RSTV in a non-tether position.
 

Mommy0608

New member
This is a one time thing. I rarely have the 2yo with me, his mom's usual sitter is unavailable tomorrow. The other 3yo does ride with us every now and then and rides in the 3rd row LATCH position. All 3 of the youngest would use the same harness height, so they can be switched around. The 2yo will go in that location and then if I do end up with the other 3yo, I will have to decide who to put in that seating position.

I have no access to a RSTV so that's not an option either.
 

Mommy0608

New member
The 2yo is likely too tall to RF in anything besides a Radian or TF, neither of which I have easy access to.
 

TXDani

Senior Community Member
I think the "may only ride with me when mom goes in labor" kid goes without a tether. Try not to over think it. All kids are still very safe in a newer vehicle, properly restrained in 5pt harnesses...I would put the seats in and not give it another thought.

Sent from my iPad using Car-Seat.Org
 

Mommy0608

New member
Thanks! That's what I needed to hear. Knowing best practice, I don't like not having a tether for each kid (or an RF seat), but not knowing if I'll even have all 4 kids at once, it gets a little difficult. Since the emergency only kid is super long in the torso, I will put my DD's extra seat in the non-tethered location for him. He'll fit in it just fine if he does have to ride with us. DS's extra seat is the one in the 3rd row LATCH spot. Its been there for a month or so in anticipation of my friend's labor. The 2yo will fit just fine in that seat.

Thanks for reading and offering advice. It was quite helpful. :)
 

Mommy0608

New member
Genevieve said:
I'm really curious to see what your method and tricks for installing a FR85 in the third row of that can are. I can do it with the off center LATCH, but I've tried many, many times to do a seatbelt install back there but I have never gotten an acceptable install. Please let me know how you do it!
Well, no tricks really. The LATCHed seat was already installed in the off-set location. I didn't think I'd be able to reach the buckle stalk with it installed but fortunately I have small hands and it worked! I did LBP and used every inch of belt. Its in there rock solid. I do, however, have scrapes on my arm almost up to my elbow. ;)

So, final decision: my two kids in captains chairs as usual, 2yo that I will definitely have tomorrow in 3rd row LATCH position, and IF I have the other 3yo then he'll be in the untethered 3rd row outboard position in a FR85 installed LBP. Phew!
 

Pixels

New member
It really doesn't matter who goes untethered. All sizes of dummy have the same head excursion limits in federal testing. In fact, it is often the 3yo dummy that has a higher excursion than the 6yo dummy.

Using a booster instead of an untethered harness gains you nothing. Head excursion limits are the same. Tethering is better than either, but untethered is untethered whether the seat has a harness or not.
 

Mommy0608

New member
Of course, as luck would have it, I do have all 4 kiddos today. So glad the installation actually worked! Thanks for all the help. The only driving we're doing is taking DD to school and picking her up.
 

PunkyMonkey

New member
Maybe stupid question but what exactly does "Long Belt Path" mean? Is this an FR seat only type thing? Sorry for the OT question but I keep seeing it and am wondering :D TIA
 

Brianna

New member
I believe it was also available on the Regent, but I can't off the top of my head remember if any other brands allow it. It's a different routing path than just straight through a belt guide- here's a video [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4uuovrWhQp0"]Britax Frontier: Installation Using Vehicle Lap/Shoulder Belt; Long Path - YouTube[/ame]
 

ketchupqueen

CPST and ketchup snob
Staff member
The Trendz seat's lbp is way different and shouldn't functionthe same way. The Recaro ProSport offers a more traditional lbp routing.
 

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