FR85 in harness mode, but untethered...


Senior Community Member
We just bought a new car today...a 2011 Chevy Traverse :love: However, there is only one top tether anchor in the 3rd the middle...which essentially makes the 3rd row a one seat row cause nothing would fit next to it if it were in the middle. :rolleyes: For now, I went ahead and installed the seats outboard in the 3rd row, untethered. They are installed LBP and ROCK solid. I know it's not ideal, but I also know that it passes testing. I do feel (hopefully correctly) that the LBP install helps provide some top stability that a SBP install would not provide. I know it doesn't replace a tether, but I'm hoping it's a 'happy medium'.

How OK would you be using them like this? I can't realistically put either of the twins in the 2nd row. I have 4 kids. So 2 have to be in the middle...and 2 in the back. But my 'kid' that is not in a seat is far too big to sit in the back on any kind of regular basis. He's the size of an adult. So, he goes in the middle does my 2yr old who is rf'ing.

Here is my new ride w/seats installed.



New member
Mine is installed LBP and rock solid because the dealership cant seem to find the top tether to install. I feel fine using it that way. Both my kids will have long outgrown it by the time they reach 65lbs anyway.


New member
Isn't it irritating?! It's the reason we wont even consider buying a traverse or any of the clones. Imagine a set-up like that where top tethering is legally req'd. Good grief.

But to answer your question, LBP would be preferable if tethering can't be done. Nice looking seats, btw. And oh to have such a clean vehicle! Enjoy. :)


Senior Community Member
Thanks guys. Makes me feel better. And yeah, they will be out of them long before 65lbs. Patrick is only 40lbs and only has about 2 clicks left. My goal is to keep them harnessed to about 6 and them move to boosters. Patrick would be around 50lbs and Ricky would be lucky to be at 40lbs by then.

I love the car. It's the only one that we liked that met our needs that was in our budget. We needed 4wd/AWD, needed the 3rd row and one that my dh could get in/out of without being in pain. And in our budget. As it is, this one pushed the budget a bit in order to get everything we needed.

Even in my Suburban, I only had one top tether in the 3rd row. But at least it was outboard and could tether at least Patrick's (the heavier twin) and still have another usable seat. I'm going to miss my burb (giving it to dd #2). But I am completely in love with my new car (minus the top tether issue!!).


New member
Glad you asked this. This is what I finally decided to do in my Ford Freestyle, which only has one tether for the two-seat 3rd row bench. I figured the Frontier85 installed LBP is better than any other non-tethered seat. I feel even better about it after reading this :)


New member
So glad to see your pics! Very happy you got it!! Can't wait to see the kiddos in their seats ; ) When Em was in the Regent she was 42lbs and I had no TT anchor. I used the LBP and felt very confident with it. How does ds like the new truck?


New member
I wouldn't use them without a tether. If I HAD to use a harness without a tether, it would be a GN. but even that I wouldn't do. If the kid couldn't be rf, he'd be in a booster after 3.5/4 years


New member
The special need seat....the columbia spirit, actually says in the directions that you do not have to tether it if you use the long belt path to install. And that seat goes to a way higher weight then the frontier (130lbs). 99% sure on this. But I did read it pretty fast online. I saw that one of my students was in this seat and he is 10 and pretty dang heavy (well over 65lbs). I mentioined to his mom that his seat needed to be tethered and she said "oh no, we just use the shoulder belt and that is all it needs". So I quickly read up on the seat and she was right. Also, installation is made easier as the vehicle shoulder belt can be used as the tether in most installations. BUT I have not read the actual manual. It even says in the instalation video that the seatbelt takes the place of the tether. Of course this is not a frontier and it built different but I thought that I would mention this. I thought it was interesting that this seat that is much heavier and holds a 130lb child does not have to be tethered when using the long belt path. To me, that says that the shoulder belt does do the work of a tether in some situations....

ETA- I just read the manual online and it seem that when using the long belt path you do not have to use the tether "make sure that the shoulder
belt lies within the “Shoulder Belt
Path” as labeled on the upper right
and left sides of the child restraint.
If not, then you MUST tether"

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