Is the base of the carseat required?
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If you are talking about an infant car seat, you normally don't need to have the base installed (UNLESS the instruction book says you do-some seats cannot be used without the base). However there are a lot of "mistakes" or more chance for error if you are using just the seatbelt to install the seat. You need to have the proper angle of 45* and using a seatbelt can make this hard to achieve. If the base is too loose, I'm not sure if you mean the base to the vehicle seat or how it attaches to the baby seat. If it is the vehicle seat, you need to tighten the seatbelt or UAS clips. The base should not move at all (or within 1 inch either way when installed properly). If you mean the baby seat to base, then there is something wrong with your seat and you should check for recalls.
If you are talking about child seats (rear/forward facing), you don't need to use the base either. I find that in rear-facing the base is very convenient because it helps hold it properly. Especially if you are installing it in the middle position, sometimes the seat has bumps/divets and doesn't sit smoothly. With forward facing, I find the base is more of a bother then a help. Remember to put the back foot out under the seat when forward-facing. Most times forward-facing fits better without the base. However they are all different and you should see what "FITS" better with your vehicle. Make sure the seat cannot move more then an inch, if it does - TIGHTEN it. Check with a car seat installer if you have troubles. There are always checks you can take it to. Remember the car seat instruction book is always the rule.
I dont think there is a law that requires using a base for your carseat. I never used mine, I absouletley hated it! I have my daughter in the middle of the back seat and with the base I couldnt reach her to give her her plug. I tried the base I even had it instaled and it moved around to much I thought.
Emily - posted on 02/23/2010
Check the model of your car seat. With some carseats, the base IS required.. others it's not. If it is required and it still seems loose, take it to your local police station.. there are often officers who are trained in car seat installation and they can help you.
Mel - posted on 02/25/2010
It depends on the state. I had the local fire dept. install mine. Because of the shape of the seats(bucket, etc.) they put hard foam under the base to stabilize it. This worked and another trick is to get in the car and put your knee on top of the seat when tightening it. Our FD DOESN'T CHARGE TO INSTALL SEATS, BUT I HAD TO CALL IN ADVANCE TO SEE WHEN I COULD GET IT INSTALLLED. (SORRY, MY CAP LOCK IS GOOfy sometimes) Hope this helps you.
Angel - posted on 02/24/2010
It is not needed but for the convinience of it Babies R Us used to sell the bases alone that way you could have one in both cars if wanted. I'm not sure if they still do. or you can probably order one from the manufacturer directly. They weren't that expensive.
Katherine - posted on 02/24/2010
NO!!! It's NOT! Not in ANY state (we're military, so I had to check) Which is GREAT for me because it made everything too tight in my small car! If the base was required, they wouldn't make the baby carseats with the notches for the seatbelt in them - see?
Sarah - posted on 02/24/2010
Thank you for posting this question. I have noticed lately that the carseat base in my car seems to be getting looser & this makes me worried. I'm a first time mom & I didn't realize that for some carseats the base might not be necessary. I will have to check this out. I think it's also a good idea to get your carseat looked at by someone who's experienced in inspecting or installing them.
Amy - posted on 02/24/2010
Pay attention to your car seats user's manual. SOME car seats require the use of a base, if yours does not, then your manual will have instructions to install without the base. I know my first evenflo car seat had to have a base, but my newer model carseat has the seatbelt slots for use without.
You can also take your vehicle and car seat to get it installed and checked out. They may have a suggestion for getting the base in there nice and tight. Here is a link to locate the nearest car seat check
Rosie - posted on 02/24/2010
you do not need the base. there are slats on the carseat at kindof where it dips by the childs waist to allow for you to put a seat belt through. every carseat i've seen has this feature. i'm sure that some care seats may not have this feature, but i've never come across one.
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