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Saved 7/06/10 to The Pregnancy Posse

Car Seat Question


I'm completely confused about what size car seat to get. Friends and family have recommended the Graco Snugride, and they make one that holds a baby up to 22 pounds and 29 inches tall. But they also have one that goes up to size 32 pounds and 32 inches tall. The first one is a bit cheaper, but will a baby outgrow it before they are one year old, when it's time to move up to a new car seat? The main reason I'm tempted to stick with the 22-pound car seat is because a friend gave us some extra bases, so that would save us some dough. But if our baby will outgrow it at 6 months (I heard some can), and we'll have to end up buying the 32-pound car seat, then that would not be saving us money. Any advice?

4 years 10 weeks
Evalderas - Please don't do that. Take a look at crash test footage comparing the booster seats you want (or even forward facing convertibles for that matter) to rear-facing car seats. When you see the forces a collision puts on your child you'll be upset for considering it (at least I know I was). Don't want to preach, but I also don't want anyone to think it's worth it even though the weight limits allow it. Please leave your children rear-facing until the maximum weight or height limits are reached.
eavalderas eavalderas 4 years 10 weeks
*******GO WITH THE BIGGER SEAT******* Once your child is 22 lbs or more he/she will prob not want to stay in the carseat once you take it out of the car, I know mine didn't. So yes it is heavier but you are able to use it longer and therefore get more for your money. We went with the Peg Perego PRIMO VIAGGIO SIP 30-30 and we LOVE IT!!! More $$$ than the average car seat but we think it was worth it. Our daughter is 18 months and weights 28lbs and still uses it! I am now looking for her next seat/booster and going with one that is good from 22-100lbs...should be the only other seat we will ever have to buy!!! GOOD LUCK!!!
4 years 10 weeks
mamalinzie is 100% correct. Rear facing is 500% safe than forward facing at any age. My 3.5yo and 20mos are still rear facing and will continue to do so until they reach the limits on their rear facing convertible seats. They arent exactly small children either. My son is already 32lbs and 36" tall at 20mo. There are many seats that allow for extended rear facing (keeping kids rear facing past 1 and 20) in all price ranges, from the $50 cosco scenera at walmart to a $300+ Britax car seat. My personal favorites are the graco my ride ($115 at walmart) first years true fit premier ($200) and the sunshine kids radians ($200+)
4 years 10 weeks
The AAP has been recommending that children stay rear-facing to the limits of their convertible car seat since 2002. You do have to turn them forward facing at 1 year. In fact, they are 500% safer if you dont! Bent legs is not a safety concern as there are no documented cases of legs being injured in a properly installed RF car seat. Its not even a comfort concern either. When you really watch how babies and toddlers sit, they are always in seemingly uncomfortable positions. But since their bodies are more flexible than ours, its comfortable for them. As far as interaction goes, the driver should be interacting as little as possible with back seat passengers. Furthermore, its a few minutes here and there. If the child is void of human interaction for a few minutes, no harm will come to them. They can always listen to kids music, or talk to mom without seeing her. Britax is about to re-release all of their car seats and they will now RF to 40lbs. The reason is because its the safest way to travel! I hope you will take advantage of those weight limits.
chicagojlo chicagojlo 4 years 11 weeks
You should have some idea of how big a baby you are going to have by the time you register, so that should be a good starting point. If you don't, you're registering way too early! Admittedly my son is an exception being 16.5lbs at 2 months old, but he's fast outgrowing his infant carrier already that only holds up to 22lbs, and he hates it. Also don't let being able to carry the seat be a deciding factor, once that kid hits 15lbs you'll be done carrying it no matter what the weight limit is. Plus babies shouldn't be sitting in the seats all day anyway, if you're taking them out and about get them in a stroller or wearable carrier. It's not good for their lungs or their spines. Personally I'm glad I didn't get a seat with a higher limit because my son hates it regardless. You have to buy the convertible seat at some point anyway so why not buy it at 22lbs instead of 32?
4 years 11 weeks
It is extremely rare for a child at one year to be "too tall" to be safely rear-facing.
4 years 11 weeks
it seems like either option is a good option. you will have to decide on your own when baby becomes too heavy to carry in the infant seat, and when you want to graduate up to the convertible seat and turn forward. (which is fine when babe reaches 20 lbs AND one year) i have found that the majority of babies are uncomfortable and too tall much past a year to keep rear facing... plus, they're so much more interactive and want to be able to see where they're going, and look at you! i don't think you'll regret going with the 22 lb seat, but if you have the extra money, there is no reason not to get the bigger one.... just in case! good luck and enjoy!!
4 years 11 weeks
We have the Snugride 32 and we really like it. I heard conflicting opinions about it before we bought it- it's too heavy versus it's nice because it lasts longer. I have to say, I really don't think it's that heavy, even with the baby in there. I only have one, so maybe it's not so bad for me wrestling to get a toddler into the car and carrying a baby seat. We don't leave our LO in there for long periods of times, but there are times when it's just not practical to babywear, and it's nice to have the option to snap her into the stroller.
4 years 11 weeks
"The first one is a bit cheaper, but will a baby outgrow it before they are one year old, when it's time to move up to a new car seat?" I don't get this. There is no rule to move a child up to a new carseat at a year, the longer you keep them rear-facing, the safer they are. You change carseats when they exceed the weight or height requirements, not when they reach a year. Just because the minimum requirement is a year and (not or) twenty pounds, that doesn't mean you're required to turn them then. If the seat stays rear-facing to 22 or 25 or 30 lbs, keep them rear-facing that long. Unless of course they get too tall. (And needing to sit cross-legged isn't "too tall," the height limit is stated in the carseat's guidelines.) Also yes, napping UNATTENDED in a carseat is not reommended, but having an infant fall asleep in the bucket seat and then transferring that seat to the stroller and allowing them to sleep while you are watching them, that's fine. The ER visits come into play when people put the carseat on the floor or in the crib and the baby sleeps in it unattended, unsecured, or all night, which creates an angle that can obstruct their breathing or a situation where they can roll out of it.
katiekat katiekat 4 years 11 weeks
I disagree... DD was in her infant seat well past her 1st birthday. It was WONDERFUL to have the option of leaving the seat in the car, or quickly taking it out and snapping it on our stroller frame (without unbuckling) I say go for the bigger seat, especially if you live in an area where it is cold in the winter... it is much easier to throw a cozy blanket over the seat & zip up a car seat cover than it is to wrestle your lo into a coat...PLUS... you can put them in the seat, and have time to get your things together before you head out the door (without your LO crawling or walking away)
4 years 11 weeks
AGREE with schnappycat 100%. you will only use the infant seat for 6-8 months, and then move into the britax convertible seat, which will last you rear-facing, then forward-facing, until about 5 years old when he/she is ready for a booster seat. and... you will want that infant seat in the beginning -- wearing your baby is awesome, but not ALL the time. the infant seat is a perfectly safe place for your babe to hang out and ride, rest, nap, and interract with people around. buy the graco seat that goes to 22 lbs, and the britax marathon. you will love both!
4 years 11 weeks
As stated by the other post, if you check into it, an infant car seat IS NOT a safe place to nap! Please everyone, look into these things and you will see that htere are over 9000 babies taken to the ER every year for injuries and issues related to infant car seats that are not related to them being in cars! Check out a recent Pediatrics journal.
jenni5 jenni5 4 years 11 weeks
I personally liked the infant car seat, and so did my kids. But it does get too heavy to lug around after about 6 mths. But just think you don't have to wake a sleeping baby every time you get in an out of the car. And when you go out to restaurants and people's houses it is super convenient and baby has a safe place to nap. And assuming you will have more kids you will get more use out of it, so not a complete waste of money.
schnappycat schnappycat 4 years 11 weeks
Hey, what happened to all of the other comments posted yesterday? Was I too obnoxious?
4 years 11 weeks
If you really look into it, you'll discover that the best option is to use a rear facing convertible seat that starts around 5lbs! A car seat is not designed to be used as a baby carrier, even though they are marketed as such, and they do pose significant health risks because of asphyxiation. The baby's airway is often and easily compromised in a car seat, especially the infant ones. The best thing is to not have baby in any car seat longer than 1 hour without a break and to take them out of it when you're out of the car. Use some sort of carrier or stroller even. It will also allow you more bonding time with your little one and they're often a far more contented baby that way. By wearing your baby you're able to respond to far more subtle cues. I recommend an adjustable ring sling because of the versatility and comfort for adult and baby, and when you only buy 1 seat that goes up to 40+lbs, you'll be saving yourself a tonne of money!
ladygrace ladygrace 4 years 11 weeks
As long as you are OK with the possibility of outgrowing sooner than later, buy the lighter one. Plan on using the money you saved to buy a convertible seat (one that goes rear-facing and forward-facing) with a high harness height and weight limits. Google "benefits of rear-facing" to find lots of information about why your baby should remain rear-facing as long as possible, and DEFINITELY past a year. A good convertible seat will make this easy to do. Best of luck!
schnappycat schnappycat 4 years 11 weeks
Oooh, I don't want to be a you-know-what, but I hate hearing about people who switch to forward-facing earlier than a year because they are worried about their kid's legs being uncomfortable. My son's legs hit the seat, too (most kids' legs will!!), but I'd rather risk him breaking a leg than breaking his neck. Their necks really still aren't that stable at one year. The kid can cross their legs, but are so vulnerable forward-facing in an accident, even at a year. The AAP is now recommending the age of two for that reason, regardless of how tall a kid is. My pediatrician also recs it. This issue is so important to me since it's such an easy thing to adhere to and it's been proven so much safer. My son was so used to rear-facing that he actually was upset when I finally switched him (had to to accommodate the new baby's seat). Heh. I'll get off my soapbox now since I know it's not even directed at you and not related to the post! Sorry!
Beaner Beaner 4 years 11 weeks
schnappycat - yes that makes sense. I know they can switch to the convertible car seat before 1 yr old and still be rear-facing, but thought I might as well get good use out of the infant car seat for at least a year, since they'll be in the convertible car seat until they are up to 65 pounds. I guess you're right - you just don't know how your baby will grow. My friend's baby hit 29 inches at 6 months, so they had to switch to the convertible car seat then. But they also had to switch the convertible car seat to be forward-facing before he hit one because they said his feet were hitting the seat.
schnappycat schnappycat 4 years 11 weeks
I should clarify that babies/kids still need to be restrained in an approved seat for years (I think it's 8 years now?). I'm sure you know that, but upon re-reading my response, I didn't want anyone to think that I thought it was OK to have them out of seats entirely after one year. Obviously, they have to be in a convertible seat after the infant seat and finally a booster. I wasn't very clear! :)
schnappycat schnappycat 4 years 11 weeks
Beaner, you wouldn't ever NEED to buy another infant seat, regardless of how big the baby is. Infants aren't required to sit in an actual infant seat. If your child outgrows the carrier or gets too heavy to lug it around, you can at that point just purchase a convertible seat for him or her. They just need to remain rear facing in an approved seat until at least a year and 20 pounds (although it's now recommended for much longer--my son rode rear facing until 26 months), but can safely do so in a convertible seat. Does that make sense? To answer your question, your child may not outgrow the infant seat before a year unless he or she is on the larger side. My son was just around 20 pounds at a year. However, like I mentioned, there is no way I would be lugging a 20 pound 1 year old in a carrier. Plus, he really preferred the convertible seat where he was more upright and could see everything well. But of course, all babies and families are different, so it's totally up to you. You'll probably just have to make your best guess. There is no way of knowing ahead of time, but some babies LOVE the infant seat and might happily ride around in it until the upper weight/height limits of the seat. And you might not mind lugging it around. But for me and many of my friends, it was just easier to switch the baby over to a convertible seat before 1 year and save our arms the workout! ;)
Beaner Beaner 4 years 11 weeks
Totally - I didn't think I'd be carrying the car seat around after the baby got too heavy. But will they outgrow just sitting in the 22-pound car seat before a year? I'd rather not have to buy another infant car seat (the 32-pound one) before having to buy the one he or she would need at 1 yr old.
babysugar babysugar 4 years 11 weeks
I have to agree with schnappycat! We were "suckered" into buying the bigger car seat and it is one of my biggest regrets. It is so heavy to begin with - and then you add a 15 pound baby to it and it is literally a workout to lift it.
schnappycat schnappycat 4 years 11 weeks
In my experience, the baby gets too heavy to carry the infant seat much past 6 or 8 months. They might not technically outgrow the seat weightwise, but many people around that age opt to either just keep the infant seat in the car and take the baby in and out, or just move the baby up to a convertible seat at that point (which you CAN do because most good convertible seats are rated for infants and can be installed rear facing--there is no rule that says an infant must be in an actual infant seat until a year). It's just really cumbersome to lug around once the baby reaches a certain weight. I honestly can't imagine trying to carry a 22 pound kid in a carrier, let alone a 32 pound kid. No way. My 2 1/2 year old isn't even 32 pounds, so this makes me laugh. Also keep in mind that not all kids like the infant carrier, especially after a certain age. My daughter loves her so far (at 2 months), but my son HATED it from day one. He was ok in the car, but really didn't like to be carried in it or put in the stroller with it. So we really didn't use it much aside from the actual car. And then we switched him to a Britax convertible seat around 8 months (still rear-facing, of course). Sorry this got so long!