at what age do you move your child up to the bigger car seat?

Elizabeth - posted on 03/22/2010 ( 200 moms have responded )

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i have seen alot of my friends with babys the same age or younger then mine in the front faceing car seats.. when are you suposed to move them over?

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Melissa - posted on 03/23/2010

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I chose to add this video from youtube.com because it shows both crash tests for forward and rear facing. This is what changed my mind to keep my son rear facing. Until the child is 2-3 years old the spine hasn't fully developed, which is why age is more appropriate than weight in this situation. This video tells a personal story (which you can disregard) but also has many other fact pulled from other websites (which are listed-so you can check those as well). Please watch this before making your decision.



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q8gU9zzCG...

Raven - posted on 03/29/2010

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Seriously Madilyn! In Europe they keep their children rear facing until they are at least 5. It's sad that most American's don't get it.

Rebecca - posted on 04/02/2010

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Until they weight limit on the car seat or their head is above the back of a convertable seat. Leave your kids rearfacing as long as possible.

http://www.cpsafety.com/articles/StayRea...

"Second, there is not a single documented case of children's legs, hips, etc. breaking or being injured in a crash due to longer rear-facing. There are plenty of cases of head and neck injury in forward-facing children that could have been prevented if the child had remained rear-facing. However, even if a leg or hip were broken or injured, it can be fixed. A damaged spinal cord (from forward-facing too soon) cannot be repaired and subjects the child to lifelong disability or death."

Raven - posted on 03/30/2010

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From carseat.org:

When can I turn my baby around to face forward in the car?

When he is at least one year old, and preferably longer. (Swedish children ride rear-facing until at least three years old in safety seats made to fit larger children.) In a crash, an infant's spinal cord may stretch if she is riding facing forward, and the baby could die or be paralyzed for life. This is true even for babies who have strong neck muscles and good head control.

Most convertible safety seats can be used facing the rear up to 30 pounds and a few to 35 pounds. So there is no reason to turn your baby forward before age one and risk spinal injury. Do not use an infant-only seat if your baby weighs more than the maximum shown in the instructions (20-22 lbs. for most, 30 lbs. for a few infant-only seats) or if her head is within an inch of the top edge of the seat. When using a convertible seat rear-facing, make sure the child's head is below the top of the safety seat, so that the head is not exposed to contact with the vehicle interior.

Why is facing rearward so important?

Babies have heavy heads and fragile necks. The neck bones are soft, and the ligaments are stretchy. If the baby is facing forward in a frontal crash (the most common and most severe type of crash), the body is held back by the straps, but the head is not. The head is thrust forward, stretching the neck. Older children and adults wearing safety belts may end up with temporary neck injuries. But a baby's neck bones are soft and actually separate during a crash, and the spinal cord can tear. It's like yanking an electrical plug out of a socket by the cord and breaking the wires.

In contrast, when a baby rides facing rearward, the whole body--head, neck, and torso--is cradled by the back of the safety seat in a frontal crash. Facing rearward also protects the baby better in other types of crashes, particularly side impacts. For more information, go to "Rear-facing vs. forward-facing."

Is it safe for my rear-facing baby’s feet to touch the vehicle seatback?

Some older convertible safety seat instructions said that a child should face forward when her feet touch the vehicle seatback or if the legs must be bent. However, there is no evidence that longer legs are at risk of injury in a crash, and these instructions have now been revised. Most children learn to fold up their legs for comfort when their feet touch the back of the vehicle seat. The only physical limit on rear-facing use is when the child's head comes near the top of the safety seat. At this point, the child should be moved to a rear-facing convertible restraint, or, if the child is already using one and is over one year, he should be turned to face forward. For taller rear-facing children, the concern is not potential leg injuries but possible head contact with the vehicle interior in a severe rear impact or during rebound from a severe frontal collision. This can be controlled by using a rear-facing seat equipped with a rear-facing tether (Swedish style).

Madilyn - posted on 03/29/2010

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Raven. I hear ya! some people I talk to online are flabbergasted how USAins don't value their children's safety.

The Graco My Ride 65 is RF to 40 and FF with 5 pt til 65 and is only $145 give or take a few $

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Lynette - posted on 04/14/2011

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ive just brought erf carseats for my boys as my youngest has reached the rf limit on his combi seat and im not going to turn him, my eldest who has been ff will be turned to rf he has also at not even 3 yrs outgrown his ff seat thats supposed to last to 4 yrs, im not ready to put him in a booster without a 5pt harness and they dont make them over here for his weight so an erf seat was our only option to keep him in a secure harness

Melinda - posted on 04/03/2010

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I had to purchase a new conversion car seat. My son is 9 months and just about 24 lbs.

Celeste - posted on 04/03/2010

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My childrens doctor says it's not the age of your child that tells u when to change car seats but the weight of your child and the weight printed on the car u have.

Karen - posted on 04/02/2010

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I'm still confused as to why anyone thinks people on here are calling others stupid or being rude.

Thanks op for asking this question, I think it has helped lots of babies be safer in their cars. :)

Laura - posted on 04/02/2010

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the rule is 1 yr, 20 lbs...but studies have shown kids still don't have lots of head control (heads are still large proportionately). Try to keep them rear facing up to 2 years. My husband finally insisted on turning our son around (21 months) so he can socialize better with siblings.

Davine - posted on 04/02/2010

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I whole heartedly agree. Just because you believe something and are pulling things from unfortunate situations, does not make someone better. I understand that some people think that what they are saying is absolutely iron clad. But what happens when they disprove this theory like they do about every other reccommendation on how to take care of a child. ie: one day your child is suppose to sleep on their back then the next it is their stomachs...and everyone will be on here calling eachother stupid. that isn't helpful. All this poor woman did was ask when you are suppose to move them. Of course we all should give our opinions and tell our stories, but this is just crazy! I stand by my original statement, be safe, but do what you feel is best for your child!!!! And whether any of you like it or NOT....the general rule of thumb and more people than not on this thread have said 1yr and 20lbs!!!!!

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Misty: I think it's great that you kept ur son rear facing till almost 2 but you can't just tell people to ask their doctors because some people have commented that their doctors are the ones who have advised them to turn their children around sooner than a year even in some cases! It's NOT up to DOCTORS! You at MINIMUM need to obey the law and hopefully have the common sense to continue rear facing even longer!



Do you know how many women on here have said, " My doctor told me I could forward- face my son once he was 20lbs so I turned him around at 7 months because he was already 20lbs! ".......DOCTORS DON'T ALWAYS KNOW BEST! I'm glad in your case he did though!

Joanne - posted on 04/02/2010

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I switched my son to a front facing car seat when he turned a year, he was also 23 pounds.

Misty - posted on 04/01/2010

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As I just found out at my local D.M.V every state has its own laws but your doctor can tell whats best for your child but at my son was only 15pd at 1 year my doctor told me that its at least 20pds AND a year old !so we a toddler seat car seat that was also rear facing seat , and he stay rear facing till he weight 20 pd ,so he was almost two before I turned he around ,I believe Safety first ! THE LAW 2nd !

Shelley - posted on 03/31/2010

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I moved mine to his bigger seat at 7 months but still had it rear facing until he was one which is the recommended age I moved him just because the baby seat I felt was to snug plus I barely could carry it anymore anyways.

Natalie - posted on 03/31/2010

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I'm from Nova Scotia, I have a safety 1st for him(that we hate) that is rear facing 5-35lbs, forward in harness 22-50lbs and booster 40-80lbs. But it's awful for adjusting the straps and really really hard to get tight enough on him, which is why we want to switch the evenflo generation(like we have for his older brother thats already over 35lbs). Try calling your nearest childrens hospital (my boyfriend did this when our daughter seemed too long for her infant seat) they should have the information for you(ours does carseat clinic's a few times a year, where they take you seat out check it over and teach you to install it properly for your child).

Adriana - posted on 03/31/2010

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I belive it's based on your childs height and weight. Your local police station should have a child safety seat officer who should be able to answer questions like this one.

Outi - posted on 03/31/2010

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the infant carrier is to 20 lbs and at least one year old. Although all of mine outgrew their carrier by 10 mos and at that point I put them in forward facing 5 point harness seats. There are seats that work both forward and rear facing and I've heard that its ok to keep your kid rear facing until like age 3 or 4 but I just always put them facing forward after they grew out of their carrier so around 10 mos

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Natalie: There's an Eddie Bauer one in Canada that has very similar specs to the Radian otherwise you may have to order from the US website cuz I've never heard of Radian in BC where I'm from! Where are you at?

Sondra - posted on 03/30/2010

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depending on the baby's weight you may want to get a convertible car seat because it can be used either rear facing or forward facing.

Natalie - posted on 03/30/2010

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In the province I live in it's illegal to forward face a seven month old,

Is Radian avi. in Canada? I tried the babies r us canadian site and couldnt find it.

[deleted account]

And which one would that be Karen?! ;)

Amanda: Karen's right....nobody's mad! Some of us are just passionate about certain things and all I see these ladies doing is offering information to help other women make more informed decisions! No harm, right?

P.S. I think you meant to say that ur daughters were forward-facing at 7 months??

Karen - posted on 03/30/2010

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I don't see anyone getting mad Amanda. This thread is actually going really really well compared to another one going on right now.

Amanda - posted on 03/30/2010

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I love that some of the moms on here are actually getting angry... its hilarious! As you ladies keep saying there are laws and they differ from place to place. Where I live the law says that they are to remain rear-facing untill 20lbs OR 1 year. So my daughters were rear-facing at 7 months. Call me stupid I really dont care I made the choice to switch them before a year and it has worked wonderfully. Its not like anyone is trying to force you to switch your children before you are ready so I really don't understand why you are getting so mad.

[deleted account]

Katrina: my Eddie Bauer has the same specs as the Radian! Natalie, you can order it or pick it up at Babies R Us!

Natalie - posted on 03/30/2010

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Katrina do you have a website where we can check out that seat? If they rear face that long we may get them all one for in our van(primary vechile) and use the others as back-ups(grandparents or daddy's car) when needed

Katrina - posted on 03/30/2010

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That's great Natalie, but your oldest can still rear face too! I ordered a Radian XTSL after seeing that video (and getting our tax return) and it just came today. It rear-faces to 45 lbs, and after that forward faces to 80 lbs with the 5-point harness and super latch. My son is 2 1/2, 30 lbs and around 36 inches tall so he will rear face in it for quite a while. It looks like it has 5-6 inches above his head too. I'm so happy with it and it was super easy to install! I'm in love. :) lol

Natalie - posted on 03/30/2010

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the only child that wont be rear facing is our oldest, because he's too heavy(he's 2.5yrs and 35-36lbs) for the weight limit on most Canadian carseats ubt is in the evenflo generations ment for children 20-100lbs(and we plan on using the harness system until he outgrows it according to the seat not the grandparents that want to let him in a booster now), our two youngest(both 11months and too big for the infant carriers) have the evenflo triphum seat that rear faces to 30lbs(hubby calmed me down and checked the seats after I freaked out wanting all new ones), it's our middle son that will need a new seat(was supposed to be getting a generations 65 for his birthday to become a big boy) because even though he'll be 2 in a few weeks he's only 25lbs, we're now planning to get him a trimphum instead because we love those two seats for their tension knobs so you always know they are in tight enough

Christy - posted on 03/30/2010

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I turned my oldest daughter to front facing when she turned a year old it was a very new experience for her she was kind of scared because she could see the cars coming at her, that is also when I will move my youngest is at a year old, but those carriers with the child are so heavy they make my back and arms hurt at night from carrying her and it around she is only 6 months at 13 lbs right now ,

Raven - posted on 03/30/2010

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Thanks Dana! You're right, I was going to post the story, but got super excited to see the grandfather made a video. I think seeing it first hand allows people actually vision themselves in that situation. It's sad that it has to be like that, but at least this family can know that they are making a difference.

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What an awesome idea to post the video Raven......we can talk till we're blue in the face but sometimes it takes something like that to make it real for people! Hopefully it makes a lot more people think!?

Karen - posted on 03/30/2010

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Yay Natalie and Amanda! If anyone wants to see older kids rear facing I just added a pic of my almost 4yo and my 2.5yo to this group.

Amanda - posted on 03/30/2010

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ok after watching that video i'm turning my son's convertible seat to rear facing and when we have the money getting my daughter a new seat. My son is 22 months and 24 lbs my daughter is 3 and around 27 lbs....

Natalie - posted on 03/30/2010

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After seeing that video, I'm getting my kids new seats that rear face as high a weight/height limit as I can find, their lives are worth everything to us, why would we not spend every cent we can to protect them

Alicia - posted on 03/30/2010

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It is important to read the weight and height requirements for your car seat. Not every car seat is the same. Some rear facing seats only go to 20 lbs but others can go as high as 35lbs. My 3 year old daughter was in her rear facing seat until she was about 2 1/2 years because she did not reach the weight or height requirements.

Raven - posted on 03/30/2010

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After watching this video, no one can argue that forward facing is safe.

Amanda - posted on 03/29/2010

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@Laura i'm happy you said you kept him rear facing i was going to be very very worried....

Laura - posted on 03/29/2010

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I moved my baby up to a bigger carseat at 4 months, just because I have back problems and could no longer carry the infant carrier; HOWEVER, i did keep him rear facing until he was 25 lbs!

Kayla - posted on 03/29/2010

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i was told by health nurses and have also read that once they are 1 year old it is safe to move them into the forward faceing seat

Jodie - posted on 03/29/2010

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I live in Texas and State Law that the child HAS to be 20 lbs and 1 years old. Some officers carry a scale in their cars and have every right to weigh your child to make sure that they meet the weight requirement to be forward facing. If your child is forward facing and it's 20 lbs you'll get a lovely ticket that won't go off your driving record. They also check to see if the car seat is put in properly if the officer has the time to do it. We have places where I live in Texas that you can take your car seat and have in installed the right way for no cost what so ever.

Casandra Aka Casi - posted on 03/29/2010

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I moved my daughter from carrier to front facing car seat at 20 pounds about 9 months old..My son went from front facing car seat to booster seat at 40 pounds just over 3 years old.

[deleted account]

I didnt switch my last daughter over until she was 1 as I felt it was safer to have her rear faced. The research I did said it was better to have them facing the rear as it lessens the impact on their bodies if god forbid you happen to have an accident.

Natalie - posted on 03/29/2010

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look into the laws for carseats in your province/state, call the local dept. of motor vechiles, or check childsafe.ca. I had issues with it because my older son when we lived in Sask. CA was allowed to forward face once he could sit, where my younger son (we moved when he was born) has to stay rear facing to a year because we are in NS,CA. Recently I have heard rear facing is the best position for your child in a crash, over seas its normal to rear face a child as old as 5 years old, we are planning to rear face our children until the limits on their carseats(35lbs), regardless of age.

Amanda - posted on 03/29/2010

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The Law says age 1 AND 20 lbs but they are starting to say to keep the child in a rear facing as long as possible because it's safer. Just be sure your child is 1 and 20lbs. Also, be sure that if they are still in a carrier car see that you're putting the handle back after securing it to the base. I know here in CO it's a $94 ticket if your caught with that handle up. You can also get a huge ticket if they aren't in the proper seat or secured right in it.

Katrina - posted on 03/29/2010

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I'm sorry, but control and stability sitting up are not indicative of spinal cord development, and even an adult with fully developed neck muscles can't hold their head in place in an accident. Accidents DO happen regardless of which way your child is facing, but I'd rather my son be rear facing in an accident than forward facing - which multiplies his risk of head/neck injury by 5!

Megan - posted on 03/29/2010

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They cannot be front facing until after a year. My son was over the weight limit in his baby car seat before he was 1 so I had to get one that faced backwards for 3 months until he was old enough to face forward and then I just turned it around!

Davine - posted on 03/29/2010

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My son is almost 13 mnths now and a little under 20lbs but way too big for the infant carrier. I have since switched him to a forward facing car seat, but he is strong! I would definatley make sure you stick with the One year and about 20lbs...but also use your judgement, if you feel your child doesn't have a lot of control and stability sitting up then go to a bigger rear facing seat. The law is the law, but use your best judgement, and accidents happen no matter which way your child is facing. Its really what you feel comfortable with! ( I suppose much like the debate of whether or not seat belts is the safest) But to be clear once again I am saying at least 1yr and 20lbs

Karen - posted on 03/29/2010

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Katrina you're gonna like the Radian. I love mine and wish I had all Radians, it's definitely gonna last the longest. And I'm jealous you got the new one that goes to 45. :drool:

I also have a Graco Myride and a True Fit. Both are nice but I love my Radian, then the MyRide then the Truefit.

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