Next Car Seat Upgrade

Updated on October 11, 2010
A.S. asks from Macomb, MI
15 answers

My daughter is going to be 7 months old in a week . She is out growing her infant car seat. we have the next car seat already but we dont know when she should use it . I have heard as long as she can hold her head with no problem she can be front facing, and others i have heard not till a year. Can she be moved from a infant to a toddler car seat. when would be the best time and what way should it go. ?

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answers from Seattle on

Best option is just to do the convertible car seat, and keep her rear-facing. Much safer if you get into an accident, a bit more of an inconvenience but safety is worth that. Idk if you upgrade seat is rear-facing, but it by far is safest. Most toddler seats are these days.

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answers from Dallas on

Most laws state babies must be 1 year old AND 20 pounds, before they can be forward facing. The recommendation now, is actually to keep them rear facing for 2 years. (although, it's not the law.) When my son turned 8 months, we moved him to a convertible seat and kept him rear facing

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answers from Boston on

the bare minimum for forward facing is 1 year AND 20 lbs but it is much safer to rear face until at least 2 (the new recommendation)

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answers from New York on

Get a convertible seat, many fit 5 to 40 pounds. Keep her rear facing at least until age 1 year and 20 lbs both. My son was a big baby and was 20 lbs well before a year but the age part is about muscle strength and coordination. My daughter is much smaller and is still rear facing at 22 months but will probably need to switch very soon. Rear facing is much safer for your child--the whole seat is supporting their body in a sudden stop or impact. Every time you move to a new type or stage of seat/booster it is less safe. My 4.5 year old is over 50 lbs but still in a seat with a 5 point harness rated for his weight. He can fit in a booster seat but only uses it when not in our family cars.

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answers from Chicago on

Check what the weight limit is on your infant carrier. Mine is a Graco Snugride, and it can no longer be used at 22 lbs. That is what will determine when she is ready to move to a convertible seat.

Also, it's the law (and the safest for them, most importantly!) to be rear facing until AT LEAST one year. I have a friend who keeps her kids rear-facing for MUCH longer, because it is safer for her kids. Do what is safest for your child.

Good luck,
Barefoot Books Ambassador

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answers from Lansing on

they say 20lbs and a year before they can be forward facing BUT the longer that you can have them rear facing the better. if your babies legs are touching the back of the seat they are still safe. i would rather have broken legs than a broken neck. my son was rear facing until he was 3 and he never cared that he was still rear facing. the longer you can rear face the better, they get that extra time for their neck muscle to get stronger. when a child is rear facing and you get into an accident they "ride" up the back of the seat, think of them just sliding up towards the top. which is less tolling on the childs body. when your child is forward facing and you get into an accident thier bodies/head will get thrown forward and thats when they can get internal decapation or worse yet death. i personally would choose a seat that can be either rear facing or forward facing. my son in is the graco my ride 65 and we both love it! rear facing till 40lbs or forward facing 22-65 lbs. it has 2 cup holders and i love that natural recline to the seat, that he is forward facing when he falls alseep his head DOES NOT fall forward like it would in most other seat. good luck in your choice



answers from Detroit on

Hi A.,
Our pediatrician said not to put our daughter forward facing until she was a year and/or at least 20 pounds. At 7 months, I wouldn't trust her to be forward facing..her neck muscles aren't strong enough yet to keep her still in a car crash, even though she holds her head up fine. My daughter was born being able to hold her head up, lol. I would rather be safe than sorry on this one. Maybe your second seat can face backwards?


answers from Minneapolis on

Make sure you have a convertible car seat, install it rear facing and use it for her. She doesn't need to remain in an infant seat for a year, my boys were both in a rear facing convertible car seat by 5mos old.

A rear facing car seat is outgrown when there is less than one inch of hard shell above the childs head or the child goes over the weight limit for rear facing. When one of these things happens, move to a rear facing convertible car seat. The AAP, Safe kids, and NHTSA recommend children remain rear facing until the yare at least 2yrs and 30lbs, and its best to keep a child rear facing until they outgrow their convertible car seat rear facing. The harness should come from just at or BELOW the shoulders for rear facing.

Please visit for installation help, and for more information. A child should never be forward facing before 1yr, and really no child should be forward facing before age 2. If your car seat is forward facing only, buy a convertible car seat that can rear face, then forward face. Please message me if you would like suggestions on seats that will last hte longest and keep your child safe.



answers from Detroit on

I beleive MI law specifies a specific weight and height in addition to the 1 year requirement to turn her around. You should install the seat rear facing until all three requirements are met. My daughter turned around at 1 and my son (who is 21 months) had to wait until about 14 months due to his weight.



answers from Grand Rapids on

The law is 20lbs and 1 yr before you can turn them around. When my daughters outgrew the infant carrier seat, i bought a convertble seat that can be rear facing and then be turned around when they are older. I kept my girls rear facing until they were 18mos because it was safer and they were small for their ages. In making a purchase of a car seat NEVER buy one used at a garage sale or resale shop, you don't know the history of the seat, whether it has been in an accident or had a recall.



answers from Detroit on

Best to stay rear until age 2.
Never forward before a year, though, no matter what.



answers from Saginaw on

call the State Police post in your area, or a local AAA office (if they have a person staffed for it) and set up a carseat check, or ask where to go for one. take both seats there with you. They are the experts in this area because every child is different.
the guidlines are usually one year, or 20 pounds...but let them tell you.



answers from Detroit on

This happened to me with my first. I just put her in a toddler seat and kept it rear-facing until she was a year. Discuss it with her doctor and they should give you a better answer. Good luck!



answers from Kalamazoo on

Absolutely not! However, there are some stage two seats that can be installed rear or front facing. i'd look into one of those so that she's still safe, but not squished! My husband is a Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Physician and having a baby less then a year old front facing is just asking for a complete spinal cord injury! Smaller children cannot tolerate the neck damage done during a collision. Rear facing is the best plan, and do it as long as you can. My 13 month old is small, she's about 19 lbs, and my stage two seat has a 20 lb. minimum, so I guess she'll have to wait a few more weeks/months until she can start facing forward. Better later then sooner!!!

Best wishes!



answers from Detroit on

You can move her to the toddler seat, BUT make sure it is backward facing. I had to move my daughter around the same time. She has to be backward facing at least till she is one. A lot of people say even longer. You can ask her dr. what they think is the best weight, height, and/or age to mover her forward facing. As long as she is safely secure in the toddler seat, she will be fine. I hope this helps.

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