Researching on Convertiable Carseats

Updated on January 24, 2008
J.S. asks from Many, LA
20 answers

I've been researching on the different brands of convertiable carseats and the only thing I have found it that there are as many pros as there are cons. Looking for anyone who has any recommendations.

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answers from Baton Rouge on

I bought the Fisher Price Safe Voyage Deluxe. It is made by the same people who amke the Britax car seats at a fraction of the price. this is the site I ordered mine from and shipping was free.



answers from Jackson on

When my 7 year old was born we did not want to spend the money on Britax so we bought a cheaper one. We ended up taking that one back and getting the Roundabout- and have never bought another brand since. My 6 year old used a marathon and it was great for her. My 3 year old still sits in his Boulevard. They are expensive but are completely worth the investment!!

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answers from New Orleans on

We LOVE our Britax seats - nothing compares in regards to features, ease of use, and safety.

I'd recommend one of the larger ones (the Marathon, Boulevard, or Decathlon). The Roundabout is a great seat (we have one of those too) but its outgrown in height/weight usuall before a child is 4 years old (which is the BARE minimum for a booster seat). The larger britax seats have taller harness heights and higher weight limits which are really much safer for a child to be in.

Also, the Evenflo Triumph ADVANCE (HAS to say advance) is a great seat. The regular Triumph has a really short shell and is outgrown fairly early and is a horrible seat for extended Rear-facing (which is better for a child than forward facing).

I'd HIGHLY recommend AGAINST any 3 in 1 seats (Eddie Bauer, Cosco, Safety First etc) - they're all the same thing and all have horribly short top harness heights - so many kids outrow it by like 2 or 3 years old in height - it also make for a really cruddy booster seat and is one of the harder seats to install PROPERLY.

Also run FAR FAR away from any seat with an overhead shield. Those are very outdated and NOT recommended by actual car seat techs.

The Graco Comfortsport is also another seat that you need ot run FAR FAR FAR away from. Seriously short harness heights and low weight limits. My VERY small kids were too big for this seat at like 2.5 years old.

But really, the Britax seats are totally worth the money.

Another nice one is the SunshineKids Radian ... its not as easy to use as the Britax seats - but its a great seat.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from New Orleans on

i use the even flo trumiph



answers from Biloxi on

We have the carsets that convert into booster seats. They are made by Graco. It holds up to 80 lbs. And with the laws for carseats, etc. being so goofy from state to state, we decided that this was the best for us and them going from infant to toddler seats.

We got ours as a gift from our in laws, so I don't know how much they were. But they are military so I know they didn't pay a lot for them.

You may find a second hand one instead of spending an arm & legs for they do get expensive. Also, check with your local car insurance offices, State Farm, used to give seats out to people for free. Also some fire stations have a car seat check and will tell you what is good or not and if you have it in correctly. I don't know if LA or MS has anything like that but it is worth checking out.

Do you belong to You can ask for a "Wanted" toddler carseat, from someone that no longer needs them. Also, check out your local consignment shop...usually you can get a good deal on them.

WalMart has pretty good prices on them as well. Just depends on if you want all the bells and whistles that come with the price tag...which I don't think you do from what you have said. A general toddler seat that holds up to 80 lbs is a good one.

Hope that helps.

Take care,
God Bless,
J. D

Blessed Momma to Ashleigh & Austin ~ 3 1/2 yrs old



answers from Memphis on

hey J.,

Do not get the carseats with the bars, I am not sure they even make them anymore. we have always been a graco family. They have worked well and are comfortable for the kids. I switched to eddie baurer and was happy with them but only when my older one was big enouhg for a lapbelt. The 5 point harness is to difficult to attach on those.

Anyway, hope this helps.




answers from Birmingham on

Britax Marathon !!!!!
I was so torn about spending the money a few years ago when we purchased it. But, it was worth it. We now have 2 and are considering a third because they just don't outgrow them. Mine are 5, 4, and 2 and they all use the Britax. Well worth the money! I have the security of knowing that I have the best money can buy --- at least for one thing in my life!



answers from Memphis on

I'm like you - third child and hating to waste money on things that still look brand new when they outgrow them! I have to tell you, though, I bought a Graco carseat when my oldest was about seven months old. It does not convert to a booster, but it does convert from rear-facing to forward facing and it is still in use for child #3. My middle child was in it until she was almost four, and she was just then beginning to show signs of outgrowing it, but my son needed it so we upgraded her to an actual booster. When my oldest had to move out of the Graco to allow our middle child to use it, we bought a Cosco that is convertible from carseat to booster and we haven't liked it from the beginning! We still have it and consider it safe, but we like the Graco carseat and our middle child's new booster (also a Graco) MUCH better! I don't know if it's the Graco brand we like and Cosco we don't or if it's just that we don't like the convertible carseat to booster. I don't know if your kids are of the right age for this, but, I would recommend a rear to forward facing convertible that would fit to about age four and then switch to an inexpensive booster.



answers from Hattiesburg on

i love the alpha omeaga 3-in-1
i have one for my 2yr old and i will be buying a new one for my 4mth old



answers from Chattanooga on

My kids used the Britax roundabout. It goes up to 40 pounds. It can be rear facing or forward facing. The Britax Marathon is similar but has a higher weight limit so you might want to get that. The Britax car seats are pricey but they are very strong and secure and very comfy for long trips. I think they are woth the investment.



answers from Baton Rouge on

car crashes are the #1 killer of ages 1-34 so a good carseat is not a waste of money (after all, its less than a hospital bill)

first off do NOT get a second hand seat, you do not know what has happened to the seat and its possible that its expired (yes carseats expire), recalled, or it could have been in a wreck (seats must be replaced after a crash). how old is your child and how much does he/she weigh? and whats your budget? the AAP recomends keeping your child RF to 2 b/c its so much safer. a child under the age of 2 is 4 times more likely to be injured when FF. also while in most places the law is 4/40 for a booster, most 4 year olds are not mature enough to sit properly in a booster and they will squrim and put the seatbet behind their back which is unsafe. finding a seat that harness past 40# is important for this reason (keep in mind that most seats that change to a booster only harness to 40# and many of those are outgrown by height before that). a few good seats that should be able to keep a child RF to 2 and harnesses past 40# are:

the evenflo triumph advance - RF 35# FF 50# $130

the britax marathon/boulevard/decatalon - RF 33# FF 65# $210-$300

the sunshine kids radian65/radian 80 - RF 33# FF65/80#

the following are FF only seats and would only be ones to look at if your child is at least 2 and FF:

the britax regent - FF 80# $270 (on sale 240)- this seat will last most kids the longest

the Graco Nautilus - $150 FF 65# then converts to a High Back Booster and then to a backless booster, this seat is new on the market and only in some walmarts right now, it should be in them all by the end of feb.

please PM me if you want/need more help or post your questions on in the car seat section

oh and i wanted to add that my 2 1/2 yr old is happily RF and both my kids will stay in 5pt carseats at least till they're age 6



answers from Nashville on

Sorry. I bought one by how comfortable the seat felt... how cushiony it was. I have been using it for a long time. I am not sure what you are talking about when you say that you want something that is convertible. Mine is not convertible that I know of. When she grows out of this one, I will have to get one of the booster seat things. The one that I have has several slits in it so I could put the straps in low or high and that way she can go a few years like that without growing out of it.
I don't remember what I bought but I like it. The seat felt more cushiony and comfortable than any of the rest.



answers from Little Rock on

My husband and I bought the Britax Marathon for our little one. We put her in it at 10 months, but kept her rear facing for a while. She is now 19 months old, and forward facing. I absolutely LOVE this carseat! It is so much easier to install than the cheaper ones we used with our first daughter. The latch system is easier to use than with most other carseats, too. You can get the Marathon at Target now. It costs $269 on their website, and they have lots of different covers. We bought the plain gray one. It will seat up to 60 pounds, so we'll be using this until she's ready for a booster seat.

Hope this helps! You've gotten lots of great responses.



answers from Clarksville on

We did lots of research as well and opted for the evenflo triumph convertible car seat. It is super comfy, as far as seats go and has great safety ratings on consumer reports (was one of the best rated models when we bought ours 1 year ago. The only down sides are: rear facing strap adjustment is difficult when the seat is securely position in the vehicle (the adjuster knob ends up pushed into the seat itself and won't turn very well) but forward facing it is great, the other issue is major clean up (my son got sick in it once and it doesn't come apart enough to wash the vomit out easily- I spent hours with a q-tip and pipe-cleaners and a hose trying to get it rinsed out all the way). It vacuums easy though, just not washes. It is the only seat I have experience with and all in all I would buy it again over another model because I hardly used it much rear facing anyway and only have had to deep clean once, so the comfort and safety overrule the issues in my mind. Hope this helps!
B.T.W. we were told a really good secret for installing a seat super tightly once from a car-seat safety specialist: if your vehicle seats recline back then recline the vehicle seat half way, install the car seat completely with the LATCH and tighten down as much as possible, then pull the vehicle seat upright (this may take 2 people one to pull/push seat from behind and one to hold release lever until seat is upright) and trust me the car-seat won't budge a cm least yet an inch!



answers from Lafayette on

We have the Britax Decathlon and LOVE it!! They are more pricey but I find it's well worth the money.



answers from Baton Rouge on

I did a lot of research and also asked other mothers I know which one they use. I found that the Britax Marathon was used most by the mothers and also seemed to have the best reviews through research online. I am very happy with it and the weight limit goes up to 60 lbs. They are not cheap and they have some that are much cheaper but I wanted to make sure my child was as safe as possible so I spend the extra money to make sure she was safe. I see a couple of people mentioned to you getting one second hand but from everything I have read they do not suggest buying a used car seat.



answers from Chattanooga on

We have the Britax Marathon covertible. Rather expensive, but well worth the price. We bought them when my daughter was 6mths and she will be 4 in August and is just now beginning to grow out of it. We have a second child that will use the carseat as soon as he gets to big for his infant seat. We love our Britax carseat so much, that we will be purchasing a Britax booster for our first child. Keep in mind, the safety of the convertible seats. The Britax brand are tested above what the standard guidelines are for safety testing on carseats. I would higly suggest, you researching the seats that you are interested in and reading the reviews of other parents on each model so make your decision. Hope this helps.



answers from Birmingham on

We have a Britax Roundabout and really love it. We've used it since my daughter was 10 months old but don't know how long it will last. It goes up to 40 lbs and she's 24 lbs now so hopefully it will last awhile. The one bad thing was that it did not fit in my car rear facing. It can go rear facing but my backseat is apparently too small for it to fit properly. So we had to install it forward facing when she outgrew the infant seat. I thought the most important thing was that it fit properly in the car. I tried other brands and I had the same problem with all of them in my backseat and obviously I wasn't getting a new car. I drive a Toyota Highlander.



answers from Biloxi on

We have Britax Marathon and we LOVE it!



answers from Huntsville on

We are currently using Cosco brand car seats in our cars. One car has one that is for backward (infants) and forward facing (up to 40 lbs I think). Then our other car has one that is for 20 to 80 (I think..). It is only forward facing & you take off the 5pt harness later to use as a belt-positioning booster seat. I can't remember how much the first one cost, but the second one was about $45 at WalMart. We couldn't afford the top brand stuff at the time. I think these work just as well!

You may be able to find one second-hand from a consignment shop to save money too. Almost all of my daughter's clothes have been bought from the Kids Market sale that is held twice a year in Huntsville, AL. We LOVE shopping there!

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