View Full Version : Car Seat For 3 YR Old

02-25-2002, 05:40 PM
I'm trying to figure out what is the best and safest car seat to buy for my toddler. I saw the new car seat out called the mission (?) booster seat. Does anyone know if it is up to par? I'm also trying to figure which car seat is better Graco or Century? And which one from them would be the one to get.

Christina :o

02-26-2002, 10:03 AM
If your child is JUST 3 years old, then I'd suggest you try to find a seat with a harness. Pretty much all three year olds aren't ready for a belt positioning booster, where they can move around in the belt like you can, and also still really benefit from the 5 point harness, which spreads the crash forces around their body better.

The Safeline Mission Control seat is a high back belt positioning booster. So I'd skip it.

Most seats out today allow the child to use the harness until 40 pounds. So if your child is just 3, and already 40 pounds, I'd recommending calling around to find a Britax Super Elite. It is large and expensive ($200), but it allows a child to stay in a harnessed seat until 80 pounds.

If your child is still closer to 30 pounds, there are several easy to find choices. The Evenflo Apollo, Evenflo Express, the Graco CarGo varieties (choose one with a front harness adjuster), the Century Berverra Ascend, and the Century Next Step DX all have harnesses that can be used to 40 pounds, then the seat can be used as a booster to 80. And the harness slots are high enough for most kids, so they'll outgrow the seat by weight, not height.


03-07-2002, 05:04 PM
Dear Toby,
Sorry for not getting back to you sooner. I've had all the members in our family sick, including myself. I thank you so much for the info. We decided to go for the Cargo seat. I'm having trouble finding out which ones have the front harness, and have a cup holder, mesh bag if possible, and can the toddlers sleep in them without falling all over the place. One last question, After she stops using the harness, can this seat use a regular car seat belt, and if so will it move all over the place? :D

03-08-2002, 01:24 PM
It looks like the Grand CarGo has the front adjuster on the harness. The Ultra CarGo has the front A-lock adjuster (like most convertibles). The Treasured CarGo is the one to avoid. The MyCarGo has no harness (just belt positioning booster).


After your child reaches 40 pounds, you will take off the harness, and use the seat with just the lap/shoulder belt (doesn't work with a lap only belt). It doesn't usually move all over the place, but it isn't installed tightly in one spot like when you were using the harness.


03-13-2002, 09:01 PM
Dear Toby,
Sorry for trouble you again. My husband doesn't want to go with the cargo seat. He is now intested in purchasing our 3 year old a Britax. I read in the baby bargain book about the Super Elite. How is this car seat compared to the roadster, and the other seats like the roadster? Sorry, I can't remember the exact names. We are also intrested in purchasing our 1 year old a car seat. The book said the roundabout is the best, and then they said the freeway plus iso fix is good also. So which of these is best? Then they say that the company came out with the king seat, which is replacing the freeway. So, does that mean that people should buy the king instead? Help!!!!!!!!!!!!

03-14-2002, 10:20 AM
Hi Christina.

I'll do your 1 year old first. Is your child still rear facing? Can your child still be rear facing? Children can stay rear facing until they are at the rear facing weight limit (30 pounds on most seats) or until their heads are within an inch of the top of the shell. The bare minimum is 12 months and 20 pounds. So if your child is still rear facing, or is just 12 months and could be rear facing for another 6-12 months, I'd go with a Britax convertible, either the RA or the Advantage.

If your child is already forward facing, and you won't be turning him/her back around for whatever reason (like already reaching those limits), and you won't be having any more children, then go with the forward facing only seat.

The two major forward facing only choices are the Expressway, which has latch attachments, and the King, which has a really neat, easy way of getting installed.

Your 3 year old is harder. The Super Elite, which is getting more available, is definitely an option. It will keep your child in a harnessed seat for some time to come. In fact, probably until your younger child outgrows the Britax seat you are buying now, at which point your older child can move to a belt positioning booster. That would be a fine scenario. Remember that the SE is wide and heavy.

Is it necessary to get the SE? I don't have enough info to know. If your child is less than 40 pounds, you can get a combo seat that has a harness that will last to 40 pounds, then will convert to a belt positioning booster. I like to see children stay harnessed to at the very least 3 1/2, but hopefully longer. After that age, it is partly a matter of behaviour, which varies. It is never a bad thing to have your child harnessed longer, it is just harder to find seats that do that, and in practice, is it far more of a pain than using a bpb seat.

If you think a combo seat may do it, try looking at the Evenflo Apollo. It has some nice features that the CarGos don't have.