12 answers

Car Seat for 3.5 Year Old...

Hi Ladies...I have a 3.5 year old who is about to be too tall for his Britax Roundabout. He is only 30 pounds though and not ready for a "booster" seat. It says it only goes to 40" so I need something else. I looked in Baby Bargains and online...the Graco 3-1 Nautilus and the new Britax Roundabout 50 look OK...does anyone have a recommendation, good or bad? I am about to move my daughter from her infant seat and am also debating putting her in my sons Roundabout or getting something new. Thanks so much!!

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I use the Graco Nautilus for my 4 year old son. He LOVES it. I LOVE it. It kept him totally safe when my van was totaled a year ago (and I went out and bought another one the next day). I like the fact that it's a 5 point harness to 65 lbs., and he can't get out of it (he's the one who would try...).


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We recently moved my 3.5 yo daughter to a Graco Nautilus when she was too tall for the Roundabout (she's about 35 lbs and 36"). She LOVES the Nautilus, especially the cup holder. I chose it because she can stay in a 5-point harness for longer than in any other seat, which is much safer. I had originally bought the Britax Frontier, but our local police officer who was installing it said they have had a lot of installation difficulties with the Frontier and recommended the Nautilus instead (it's also much cheaper). My 1 yo son is now in the Roundabout, and I'm still very happy with it. We also have a Britax Boulevard (for my 3.5 yo), and I find the Roundabout easier to use than the Boulevard. I don't know about the newer version of the Roundabout, but if your old one is less than 5 years old and still in good shape (and, of course, never been in an accident), it sounds like you could probably use that rear-facing for your daughter.

I have my 3 year old son, (34 lbs, 40 inches) in the graco nautilus and love it! I did some research before buying it and found it to be the best price, too. My son loves it and it is very easy to use. I got it at Walmart.com. It was cheaper online than in the store and had more color choices, too. Shipping was $1.00 to my house or free to a store.

Good luck!

I have two of the Graco Nautilus....I LOVE THEM and so does my son. He is 4.5 and barely 40lbs so I still use the harness for now I can't see not using it. He is on the tall side and I have the headrest all the way down, so it looks like it will truly be the last seat I have to buy for him.

I just saw you have a infant as well....I didn't want to pass down my convertible car seats to my 10 month old after 3 years of wear and tear (they aren't bad at all, so i will use for only for him in grandma's car only) so I purchased two of the First Years TRUFIT and my 4.5 year old used those for the last 6 months. They harness also to 50 or 55 lbs and are also really confortable and stable. They are rear and forward facing.

The booster seats with a back are for kids 30-100# and start at 38" if you are interested. Once they are bigger you can convert it to a backless booster. I just got the graco turbobooster for my son who will be 4 in Nov.

I recently did the same thing - except my son wasn't too tall for his Roundabout. I needed to move my daughter out of her infant seat. I bought the Britax Marathon and moved her into the Roundabout. So far, all is going well. She really likes it and he loves his new seat - it's much bigger so he has a lot more room. I'd say, try to find your choices in a store and "test" them out. Good luck!

We actually went with the Evenflo Symphony for this reason- it converts into a booster seat (3-in-1). In retrospect, I wish I had used it with my son as an infant rear-facing. He LOVES it- well padded and sturdy. It's less expensive than the Britax and has a higher weight limit plus it's all-in-one!

I have just done what you're planning. I bought the Nautilus for my 3 yr old son who is 32#, and moved my 10 month old daughter into his Roundabout. So far it's working perfectly. The Roundabout is comfortable for her and he loves his new big boy carseat with the cup holder. I'm also very happy about the higher weight accomodation with the 5 point harness in the Nautilus. I think Diapers.com has the best price -- Especially when they run a sale. Good luck.

Get the graco nautilus 3-in-1. I have it for my son who is 44 lbs and 43 inches tall. There is so much room to go and this will last until he doesn't need one at all.I believe it goes up to 100 lbs! It converts to a full back booster when you are done with the 5 pt latch, and then to a backless booster. We're still using the 5pt latch until he's 65 lbs. His previous seat was a britax too.

The EMT at the first aid squad where I got my car seat installations checked recommended the Nautilus--said it is very safe and is "the last seat you'll need" due to the high weight/height limits and the fact that it converts to a booster after that.

We have the Nautilus for our son, too. It works well, and the harness goes to 60 lbs, so he can use that for a while still, or switch it over to the booster seat, when he is ready. It's nice to know that it'll be the last seat system we'll have to purchase!

I use the Graco Nautilus for my 4 year old son. He LOVES it. I LOVE it. It kept him totally safe when my van was totaled a year ago (and I went out and bought another one the next day). I like the fact that it's a 5 point harness to 65 lbs., and he can't get out of it (he's the one who would try...).


My 4-1/2 year old is just 32 pounds so I understand what you're going through. We have him in a Sunshine Kids Radian 65. I love it so much that my 2-1/2 year old has one too.
I loved the Roundabout though and would probably move my daughter into that after the infant seat.

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