A baby coming along, I need to get a baby car seat. - Toyota RAV4 Forums
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#1 (permalink) Old 01-21-2013, 12:00 AM
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A baby coming along, I need to get a baby car seat.

My wife is expecting a boy. Happy as ever! I need to get a car seat within 4 months. I am not sure what model and brand car seat I should get? Any parents with kids can give me some advice. I am not sure where to start or how much to spend.

If you guys have any pic, please post them.

thanks

Michael
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#2 (permalink) Old 01-21-2013, 02:12 AM
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Britax. One of the safest if not THE safest baby seats. We have 4 of them for our 2 kids. 2 in each car. You pay a little extra for them but the safety of your baby is well worth it. Good luck, and congratulations.
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#3 (permalink) Old 01-21-2013, 09:59 AM
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We use Britax as well...have found it to be very well built...in the USA I believe...
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#4 (permalink) Old 01-21-2013, 11:18 AM
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Congrats!!!

We had a Chicco Keyfit 30 for our son when he was born (this photo is his first car ride, home from the hospital)....



It gets great safety ratings and it's the smallest infant seat outside dimension-wise that we could find that still had a high safety rating. I'm 6'3" so I needed all the leg room I could get with a car seat in the middle back seat. It's cool because you can get a stroller base that it fits right into so you don't have to take a tiny baby in and out of the car seat when you go somewhere where a stroller is needed. Those little babies love to sleep and when they're sleeping you want to keep 'em that way lol.

This is what I have now...



It's safe and cool being that Recaro makes racing seats. It's a convertible car seat so once he reaches 2 y/o I can turn it front facing. He loves it and it's super easy to strap him into verses my wife's convertible seat. I can't remember the make of hers but you'll have a while until you need a convertible car seat anyway.

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#5 (permalink) Old 01-21-2013, 11:28 AM
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We/I have 2 kids, 2 1/2 and 1 yo. Between our 3 vehicles, we have 5 Britax', 3 Marathon Classics-bought at Target for an average $150 on sale, normally $200 seats. 1 Britax Boulevard that we bought for our firstborn son, was a bit more at $240 new from Amazon and 1 Decathalon, which was give to us by a sister in law and the seat is just like a Marathon.

Why Britax and why pay more money?

The seats are convertible, they will handle the kids from birth till about 60 or 70 lbs so they will last a while.

The biggest reason for me to get them?, they are comfortable and with lots of padding. Go to a Babies R Us and go feel the butt and lower back of the car seats out there, then go and feel a Britax. The difference with many seats that look good but have no padding is the difference between sitting in a church pew and First Class in an airplane. If I were a kid, I'd cry too in some of those car seats with nothing but a piece of fabric and some thin foam between me and the plastic seat. My kids have no problems with longer road trips in their Britax'.


Safety. Britax do rate very highly in the crash tests, they are safe seats. They are heavier due to the robust construction.

Lastly, they are easy to install/take out and swap or leave out if needed. Their LATCH systems are awesome and if I can, I just use the seatbelts, it depends which is easier for me as every back seat is a little different.





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#6 (permalink) Old 01-21-2013, 03:44 PM
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Welcome to parenthood! You're going to learn more about car seats and all that goes along with kids than you would have ever imagined.

Just remember, car seats sold in the United States are all "safe." This that being said, it's best to find the one that match the comfort you want to give your child you what you can afford.

There are many stages of car seats your kid will go through and there are some that will take your son from infant all the way through 60 some pounds. The truly safest way is to get a special infant car seat (just like the Keyfit 30 mentioned above) and then switch to a convertible style car seat once your boy outgrows that one. Infants are the most delicate creatures you will ever meat and they do need their own style car seat. With the Keyfit 30, all you have to do is buy extra bases for different cars rather than buying additional car seats.

Again, most any car seat you buy will be safe just be sure to get it checked out by a professional before putting your boy in there.

Also, there are car seat forums that will give you more specific information and many drive Rav4s on there so they can help with that too.

Enjoy the ride!

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#7 (permalink) Old 01-21-2013, 03:55 PM
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The brand really doesn't matter as much as what kind. For a baby you will most likey want the carrier type. It snaps into the base (which stays in the car), and can be strapped in with just the seat belt. They also snap into strollers.

Our infant seat was a graco. Not all carriers snap into all strollers.

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#8 (permalink) Old 01-21-2013, 05:19 PM
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I think pretty much all of them would work, try to get a good brand on sale, but be prepared to swear at the rav4 trying to get the straps locked in. You need magician hands to get the hooks in.
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#9 (permalink) Old 01-21-2013, 05:30 PM
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Thanks everyone for the feedback. Based on what Thundra said, I will be looking for the convertible version. For the first 6 months of his life, I will mostly like take him home to see my mom.

I like the idea of the convertible version. I don't need to buy another car seat he gets heavier.

I will get cold feet when the baby is about due. It will be a new experience.
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#10 (permalink) Old 01-21-2013, 06:47 PM
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With all that said, there is a Graco infant seat that we used for both of our kids till about 4-6 months where the seat snaps in and out of a base and can then snap into a stroller as well. It is handy as it has a handle as others had mentioned, but once the kid gets to around 15 lbs or so, the seat gets cramped for them even though the Snugride is rated for 30-35 lbs.

My wife's Rav is a great trucklet for car seats in the back. Because they slide back AND recline, I/we can easily get the right angle(s) for the seats, plus, the LATCH clips make putting the seats in so easy.

Unless you are on a tight budget, when you have to spend maybe $50-100 more for one car seat (Britax) over another less expensive seat, when you break down the yearly cost for the seat, one is spending like $50 a year for a better seat, maybe for peace of mind. I just love knowing that the kids have protection in case of a crash, plus, lots of padding for long-distance comfort.

The best part is that the Rav is already a very safe truck, side curtain airbags and stability control is really nice.
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