14 answers

Suggestions on Arranging Carseats in My Honda Minivan

I have a 2 y/o daughter & am expecting another in 4 weeks. I have my daughters forward facing carseat in the back of my Honda Odyssey minivan on the passenger side. I am obviously going to have to install my infant carseat rear-facing in the back as well, but should I just put it behind the driver's seat & leave my 2 y/o where she is??? Or should I switch hers to behind the driver's seat & put the infant carseat on the passenger side?? Just wondering if it would make much difference at all in switching them around since I don't think I'd be able to reach back to the infant carseat at all. I can hand stuff to my 2 y/o right now, but she also reaches out to help grab whatever I'm giving to her. Any suggestions?? Thanks :) J.

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So What Happened?™

I just wanted to thank everyone for their responses!! This was the first time I put in a request & I was so suprised to see all of the responses :) I just wanted to let you all know that I decided to start off with putting the infant seat behind the driver's seat for the time being & am keeping my toddler's seat behind the passenger seat. I installed the middle seat for now just for the beginning when coming home from the hospital so I can sit back there with the new baby. We will probably remove it again & just install it for long trips so I can climb into the back seat to entertain both kids. We'll see how it works!!! Thanks again so much for your support & advice :)

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I always had my youngest on the rear passenger side so that I could reach her incase she needed her binki. It is also easier to get her in and out and you dont have to climb over the other car seat.

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I always had my youngest on the rear passenger side so that I could reach her incase she needed her binki. It is also easier to get her in and out and you dont have to climb over the other car seat.

I only have one child, so I never had a space constraint when it came to car and booster seats. I never used the passenger side at all. I always used the middle or driver side only. My reasoning is that, if I were ever in an accident, or trying to avoid one, natural instinct or impulse is going to have me move/steer the car such that the drivers side is least likely to be an impact point. Thank being said, and since you will have to utiltize both sides of the vehicle, I would opt to have the infant on the driver's side, if space would not allow for him to be in the middle.

The safest place in a vehicle is the middle seat. Next safest is behind the driver. You should pull over if you have to attend to your infant, but since we don't always do what we're supposed to do, I say move the baby to where you can reach her. Your 2 year old is old enough to be asked to wait a minute if she needs something and can be distracted with a song or a story. Good luck and please drive carefully.

Switch so you can see the infant behind the passenger seat.

What are your parking arrangements? (My garage barely fits both of our cars so I usually end up struggling to get both of the kids in.)
Does the Odyssey have automatic doors? If so, I would put your infant on the side that will be easiest to get to.
Your daughter probably is able to climb in/out of the van with some assistance. The baby will not, of course, be able to help you plus her infant carrier will be a pain to deal with. I would arrange the seats so that you don't wreck your back trying to put the baby in.

i would leave the seats where they are for now. if you move your daughter,and she really doesnt want to she could think that she "lost" her place to the baby. secondly you cant reach in to a rear facing car seat while driving and to put your daughter behind you will make it harder to hand her all the little things. good luck and congrats on the new one

I was actually dealing with this issue in my Odyssey today. I've rearranged the carseats for the 4th or 5th time since I had my son (8 months). I have a 9 year-old who kinda floats to whichever big seat is available, and I have the toddler seat for my 3 year-old in the 3rd row against the driver's side. I have the rear-facing toddler seat 2nd row passenger's side, without the 2nd row removeable seat installed. This way, my 9 year-old can move from the 3rd row to the empty 2nd row seat if I need her to help.

In your case, I would put the new baby's seat 2nd row passenger side and the 2 year-old 2nd row driver's side. My 2 youngest were oriented this way for a while. Sometimes, and unfortunately, all it would take was me reaching back (while driving, of course) and rubbing my son's cheeks to get him to calm down when he was upset. Having the 3 year-old right behind me was also convenient since I didn't have to strain to hear her (which tends to cause some serious irritation for all involved). Just my 46 cents worth.

Contact the Public Information Officer at the State Police Post closest to your area. They will be able to tell you where the seat should go and some states even offer free installation and car seats....

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