Need advice on Booster and Car seat placement

Dionne - posted on 08/09/2012 ( 13 moms have responded )

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I am renting a car for the weekend and was wondering what is the proper placement for the carseat n booster seat. Should the car seat go in the middle and the booster to one of the sides? Or vice versa?

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Katie - posted on 08/10/2012

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A booster seat MUST have a shoulder strap and a lap belt weather it has a back on the booster or not. if the car has a hump in the middle then do not put a car seat or a booster seat in the middles place as the seats need to sit properly on the seat.

Rose - posted on 08/10/2012

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Most towns you can go to the fire station or police station and they will check you seats to make sure the placement is correct and they are installed correctly into your car. Most is free of charge or ask for a small donation. Every time I get a new seat for one of my kids I bring it down to one of the two places. Thats what I would recommend doing for yourself

April - posted on 08/10/2012

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then i absolutely would not put a child in the middle seat if there is no shoulder belt. tons of people here have said middle is safest, which is true, IF there is a shoulder AND lap belt. ask your rental provider for the car's manual.

Merry - posted on 08/10/2012

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Boosters that use a seatbelt absolutely MUST have a lap and shoulder belt. Lap belt is not enough. For a car seat you have to check both the car seat manual and also the car manual.

Honestly for EVERY seat you should be reading the manual and the cars manual. Make sure you're doing it right. A mistake in car seats is risking death, so always be sure.

Merry - posted on 08/10/2012

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Middle seat is safest. So you want the least safe child to be in the most safe spot. So, an infant seat or a rearfacing covnertibe' are both the safest seats. Next safest seat is a 5 point harness front facing seat. Next safest is a seat belt high back booster, and least safe is a backless booster. So, say you have one booster and one front facing 5 pt harness, put the booster in the center and the harness seat on a side, preferrably on the passenger side so if you park on the street you're not pulling your kid out into the road side.

But in every situation all rules go out the window if you can't get a snug instal. If the center seat feels wobbly or wiggly then use both sides. A tight instal is far more important then placement.

If kids are both in the same stage of seat then place the youngest one in the center.
Like my two are 1 and 3 years old, both err facing, both in the same seats. So my 1 yr old is in the center.

April - posted on 08/09/2012

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In my car, the car seat does not fit rear facing behind either side unless we push the seat up as far as it goes. Obviously we can't put the car seat behind the driver's side because both my husband and I would be crushed by the steering wheel. The middle spot is out because the lap belt is too short, so that leaves the spot behind the passenger seat. Also, i am very curious as to whether or not just a lap belt is okay for a booster seat or if they need the shoulder strap too. The middle seat in my car only comes with a lap belt and that's it, but I don't have a child that is big enough for a booster, so I don't know much about booster seats.

April - posted on 08/09/2012

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also, what kind of car seat and booster seat do you have? what kind of car is it that you'll be renting?

April - posted on 08/09/2012

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How old are your children? How much do they weigh and how tall are they? The child using the car seat should rear face for a minimum of 2 years or until he/she has maxed out the limit for rear facing in terms of height and weight. My son will turn 4 in December. He is 40 inches and 33 pounds. His car seat limit for rear facing is 45 pounds. There is no specific height restriction on the Diono (formerly sunshine kids) car seat, but obviously if the child's head is touching the top of the shell, then it's time for a new seat. As for your very general question, I did hear that the middle is the safest spot accident-wise, but many times, it is not possible to put a car seat there. I'd put the car seat behind the driver's side and the booster behind the passenger side, if they'll fit. My friend Laura Hoffmann can also give you advice.

Amy - posted on 08/09/2012

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The safest place for the car seat to be is the middle however I have found that in my car if the car seat is in the middle my sons booster seat gets shifted so they both are next to a door. It's not as safe but a very close second.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 08/09/2012

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Either way, for car seats, or any seat, the safest spot is in the middle. How old is your little one in the car seat? They are recommending staying rear facing as long as possible now. I cannot remember the weight limit though. I will try to find someone that is more educated than myself.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 08/09/2012

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Yeah, car seat rear facing in center, and booster on the side is the most safe. If you cannot do that, one on each side should be sufficient.

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