Car seats - How do they fit until they are 2??

Clara - posted on 11/13/2011 ( 23 moms have responded )

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So I have seen all these posts about keeping your kids in car seats until 1 as law and preferably until 2. I am in Australia and I am wondering if there is some difference in the car seats because I know our law here is at least 6 months before turning them around. My first daughter grew out of her rear facing seat at about 8 months and I turned her around then (it was a convertible rear or forward facing but she just plain didn't fit anymore) and my second daughter is just 6 months and is basically riding with her knees in her face already. How are we meant to keep them in car seats until 2 when they don't fit in the standard Australian carseat???

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Sneaky - posted on 11/14/2011

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The difference between Aus car seats and others is that we have a requirement that baby seats and child car seats must be rear tethered. All the Swedish and US ones you see that go up to 25kg rear facing have a tether that wraps around under the seat to an anchor point, so they don't meet the Australian standard. It's shit, but yes, you can get rear facing seats up to 12kg in Australia, anf if you contact your seat manufacturer, you might actually find that they have performed stately testing up to 16 kg rear facing so you could potentially keep them rear facing even longer, it is just a PITA to keep lifting them in and out over the rear tethers :o(

Karen - posted on 11/13/2011

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as long as their weight is still within the seat limits, children don't mind sitting with legs crossed or knees bent. it doesn't look comfy, but i can assure you that the kids don't mind. i rear faced my son until just after 2 years, and to be honest, he HATED forward facing for a while because he was not comfortable with his legs hanging down. he kept trying to fold them up like he was used to and got upset when he couldn't. so for a while after we turned him, we would change his seat to rear face if we went on longer drives so he would be more comfy.

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Christa - posted on 11/20/2011

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They fit b/c their legs bend. Finding a high weight limit RFing seat is best. It's 500 times safer (not a made up number!) to RF :) My 31 month old daughter is RFing in a Graco MyRide and she is still just find an comfortable.

Merry - posted on 11/16/2011

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Just do the best you can Clara, it's tough in your country and you obviously care for their safety so I'm sure you will be able to find a good solution even if it means forward facing early.

Clara - posted on 11/16/2011

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Well I triple checked my car seats and they both say not to rear face past 9kg. And I don't have the extra money to spend on new, more expensive, car seats. Stupid Australian laws. Also, my 18 mo has no control over her legs (partial paraplegic) so I fear she would be kicking herself in the face every time I put the breaks on. My youngest is still on around 8kgs at 6 months and will be leaving her rf as long as possible but she is so long that she is kicking the back of the seat and rocking the car seat =S I have it tightened as far as it goes but it just doesn't stop it rocking...

Jennifer - posted on 11/16/2011

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She will definitely be turned at 2. Somewhere between 18 months and 2 I think. We'll see. Could be longer..I don't know yet

Merry - posted on 11/16/2011

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Yeah with how little rylie is she could probably be rearfacing til she was 8! I'm all for rearfacing but if Eric hits 4 and still is fitting rearfacing I'll put him forward. I think by 4 their bodies are better proportioned enough to be able to handle a crash better.

Jennifer - posted on 11/16/2011

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lots of front/rear facing combo seats have the top tether in the US. It definitely is not required but a lot have them. My son is almost 3 and has been forward facing since 1. He never complained of "dangling leg pain." My 6 month old will rear face longer but I'm not sure how long. I doubt till 2.5 years but longer than 1 for sure. We'll see :)

Clara - posted on 11/14/2011

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I think its something to do with the anchor points in cars. my number has a citroen and it doesn't have rear tether points so we can't put car seats in it.

Stifler's - posted on 11/14/2011

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Stops them from sliding around lol maybe Australian cars have different back seat shapes or something.

Merry - posted on 11/14/2011

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Yeah idk, our seats never have that top tether, idk. I wonder what does it do? Our seats don't get thrown from the vehicle and their only attached at one spot. Weird

Merry - posted on 11/14/2011

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They're tethered! Just not at the top like that. Ours are by either a seatbelt or a latch system.. Are your seats attached to the seat at the bottom too? Or just at the top? .

Stifler's - posted on 11/14/2011

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Um so other countries don't even have to be rear tethered? That's more unsafe than forward facing IMHO.

Stifler's - posted on 11/14/2011

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The one i have is from big w so not very hard to find. I thought you had to change at 8kg too but it's not law that you have to just that you can.

Merry - posted on 11/14/2011

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Unfortunately in Australia you don't have very good options, there are seats that rearfacing to 12kg. It IS proven safer to rear face as long as possible" legs being bent is a nuissence, not a danger.
I'm in USA and my son is 2.5 and he's comfortably rear facing, here we have seats designed to rear face a lot longer so he is completely happy rear facing.
Try to find a seat rear facing 12kg and keep her rear facing as long as you can!
Maybe there's a way to petition your government to allow safer car seats. Because there's many safer seats but you just can't use them in Australia.

Alexandra - posted on 11/14/2011

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you should buy the next step car seat because it seems that your child is too big for the current one.

Karen - posted on 11/13/2011

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Yeah, I'm not really sure what Australian car seats are like, but just from reading other posts on here it seems that your carseat laws are really slack comapred to everywhere else. The seat I have (in Canada) rear faces until 30lbs (13.6kg), forward faces to 65lbs (29.5kg) and boosters to 100lbs (45.5kg) but you can get some that are rf'ing to 45lbs (20kg). My son was a chunky little guy and was 24lbs (11kg) by 7 months but leveled out and at 26 months he's only 26lbs (11.8kg) so I can still turn him rear facing on longer trips. I'd say in your case the best you can do is keep them as long as possible. It's sad that your seats don't have higher limits to them...hopefully one day soon that will change!

Clara - posted on 11/13/2011

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Hey Karen, I checked the limits on our seats last night. The one that I have (one of the most popular in Aus) says to rear face only until 9kg and to get a new seat at 18kg. My little 6 mo is 8kg now. My eldest wouldn't be able to rear face at all as she is about 12kg. I had a look on aus carseat websites and I couldn't find one that would rear face past 9kg. Maybe Aus standards are just dodgy!

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