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Discussion Starter #1
All right, the search engine on this board sucks.

So what were people discussing not too long ago about car seat saver mats, to put on the seat itself so the child seat doesn't make marks?
 

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Lionheart makes the one I'm thinking of; around $14 at Babies R Us. Don't know where else it is available though. Its great; a big rubber seat thing that is about 1/4" thick and protects the seat perfectly.
 
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If you need a seat saver in a pinch, a beach towel has worked extremely well in my grandparent's Grand Cherokee Limited.

Michelle

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The exact same one from rightstart.com is at Toys R Us also. I just bought an infant carseat since Toys R us had a 15% off sale. There was a free gift offer if I spent $75. So I bought 2 of the seatsaver for 12.99 each along with the infant carrier carseat to get my $75 free gift (a baby monitor).
 

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Just got the seat saver in my Ody yesterday. Works great, but did interfere a little bit with my Century EZ-LATCH retrofit kit. I cut back the rubber, and used the spare pieces to drape between the top of the seat and the tether to help protect from damage there.

The rubber is tough, a little difficult to cut. I like it overall, but took me a little longer to get the seat in as tight as I wanted, since the rubber tends to make the seat a little harder to push down. Did the recline the seat back first before tightening trick and it helped alot.

Just wanted to let people know who use EZ-LATCH to be aware of these issues..

-SJ

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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by shinjohn:
Just got the seat saver in my Ody yesterday. Works great, but did interfere a little bit with my Century EZ-LATCH retrofit kit. I cut back the rubber, and used the spare pieces to drape between the top of the seat and the tether to help protect from damage there.

The rubber is tough, a little difficult to cut. I like it overall, but took me a little longer to get the seat in as tight as I wanted, since the rubber tends to make the seat a little harder to push down. Did the recline the seat back first before tightening trick and it helped alot.

Just wanted to let people know who use EZ-LATCH to be aware of these issues..

-SJ

</font>

Excellent comments. Unfortunately, this is exactly why this product is considered an "aftermarket product" and would not be recommended by a certified technician.

Speaking only as a parent, I use this product myself on all our seats. Even so, I also had to fold the sides back to fit the EZ LATCH and other LATCH anchors. I also make sure it is very tight. If you cannot get a tight fit using this product with your carseat, it is probably safer to do without it.
 

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Hey Caviller,
Was taking pics of stuff this weekend, so just thought I'd post a pic or two of my seat saver/EZ-Latch install. I know this is not difficult to visualize, but thought some may find it interesting.
-SJ





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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by caviller:

Excellent comments. Unfortunately, this is exactly why this product is considered an "aftermarket product" and would not be recommended by a certified technician.

Speaking only as a parent, I use this product myself on all our seats. Even so, I also had to fold the sides back to fit the EZ LATCH and other LATCH anchors. I also make sure it is very tight. If you cannot get a tight fit using this product with your carseat, it is probably safer to do without it.
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We just this week started using a belt positioner high back booster seat for our son. Given the comment about the difficulty of getting a tight fit with a Seatsaver, do people think it is as important an issue for booster seats? As booster seats use the regular seat belts, it seems that tightness of installation isn't as important. Is this logic good?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Ideally, you'd have your son in a seat that belts him in with its own 5 point harness--like the Britax Super Elite or the Fisher Price Futura 20/60.

The law stops at age 4 or 6, but physics doesn't. And strapped in is the safest way. Now that there are solutions to do just that, I plan on doing it. My kids will be harnessed in until 8 years or 80 pounds.

Overkill? Nah. Physics works. Belts made for the "average adult male" don't, not for kids.
 

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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Steve Pert:
We just this week started using a belt positioner high back booster seat for our son. Given the comment about the difficulty of getting a tight fit with a Seatsaver, do people think it is as important an issue for booster seats? As booster seats use the regular seat belts, it seems that tightness of installation isn't as important. Is this logic good? </font>
A seatsaver might still help protect against spills, but as you say, fabric gouges should not be a problem with a BPB.


Belt positioning boosters combined with lap/shoulder belts are a safe restraint for kids when used properly. Indeed, a front-facing carseat with a 5-point harness and a higher weight limit is safer, but this is not practical for everyone, especially now since finding one of these alternatives is difficult. Similarly, 5-point harnessess are safer for adults, too, but they aren't in high demand. This is partially because modern 3-point lap and shoulder belts do a reasonable job at occupant protection when combined with airbags and other safety features.
 

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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by adam1991:
Ideally, you'd have your son in a seat that belts him in with its own 5 point harness--like the Britax Super Elite or the Fisher Price Futura 20/60.

The law stops at age 4 or 6, but physics doesn't. And strapped in is the safest way. Now that there are solutions to do just that, I plan on doing it. My kids will be harnessed in until 8 years or 80 pounds.

Overkill? Nah. Physics works. Belts made for the "average adult male" don't, not for kids.
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In theory a 5-point restraint could provide more protection. But all the belt positioner boosters that I have seen (that also have the 5-point straps) say to use the 5-point up to weight 40 lbs, then to use as a belt positioner above that weight.

I assumed that they weren't manufactured to allow the 5-point to properly restrain a weight over 40 lbs (or weren't certified beyond that), and that was why for kids over 40 lbs to use the car's 3-point belt with the seat. I would think federal safety standards for the vehicle's belts are designed for potentially very heavy adults. My thinking is to observe the booster seat mfg. ratings to not use the 5-point over 40 lbs, as that would be unsafe.

If that is correct, why would someone plan to continue to harness their kids in the 5-point well beyond what appears to be the safety limit of the 5-point? Do the two booster seats that adam1991 mentions specify that they can be used with the 5-point harness up to 80 lbs? Or, Adam, are you using both the 5-point PLUS the vehicle's seat belts over the shoulder? If that's the case, if the car's seat belts fail, what's holding onto the 5-point belts?

Sorry to type so much, just trying to usderstand the best way to use the booster seat. Thanks!
 

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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Steve Pert:
In theory a 5-point restraint could provide more protection. But all the belt positioner boosters that I have seen (that also have the 5-point straps) say to use the 5-point up to weight 40 lbs, then to use as a belt positioner above that weight.

I assumed that they weren't manufactured to allow the 5-point to properly restrain a weight over 40 lbs (or weren't certified beyond that), and that was why for kids over 40 lbs to use the car's 3-point belt with the seat. I would think federal safety standards for the vehicle's belts are designed for potentially very heavy adults. My thinking is to observe the booster seat mfg. ratings to not use the 5-point over 40 lbs, as that would be unsafe.

If that is correct, why would someone plan to continue to harness their kids in the 5-point well beyond what appears to be the safety limit of the 5-point? Do the two booster seats that adam1991 mentions specify that they can be used with the 5-point harness up to 80 lbs? Or, Adam, are you using both the 5-point PLUS the vehicle's seat belts over the shoulder? If that's the case, if the car's seat belts fail, what's holding onto the 5-point belts?

Sorry to type so much, just trying to usderstand the best way to use the booster seat. Thanks!
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You are exactly correct. You should never use a seat above its recommended weight limits. The two seats Adam1991 mentioned are indeed rated higher for the harness. The Futura is rated to 60 pounds, the Super Elite to 80 (only 50 without tether). Hopefully, there will be more harnessed seats which exceed 40 pounds on the market soon.
 

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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Steve Pert:
We just this week started using a belt positioner high back booster seat for our son. Given the comment about the difficulty of getting a tight fit with a Seatsaver, do people think it is as important an issue for booster seats? As booster seats use the regular seat belts, it seems that tightness of installation isn't as important. Is this logic good? </font>
Steve, my 2 cents: so long as the seat belt is tight around the child, I don't think it would be a big problem. You would get into trouble if the use of the seat saver allowed the child and booster to move freely after buckled in. I know this sounds obvious, but many people out there drive with their seatbelts relatively loose, rendering the belts less useful.

The scenario I would see is that if the seat weren't flush against the back of the seat, and the stickiness of the seat saver prevented it from sliding back. Of course, you'd think this would be easy to spot.

I'm in agreement that you really don't need the seat saver to protect from indentation damage as much if you are using a booster.

-SJ

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Discussion Starter #16
Steve Pert:

<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">In theory a 5-point restraint could provide more protection. But all the belt positioner boosters that I have seen (that also have the 5-point straps) say to use the 5-point up to weight 40 lbs, then to use as a belt positioner above that weight.

I assumed that they weren't manufactured to allow the 5-point to properly restrain a weight over 40 lbs (or weren't certified beyond that), and that was why for kids over 40 lbs to use the car's 3-point belt with the seat. I would think federal safety standards for the vehicle's belts are designed for potentially very heavy adults. My thinking is to observe the booster seat mfg. ratings to not use the 5-point over 40 lbs, as that would be unsafe.
</font>
Let's not confuse the seats that are combination seats, acting as normal seat w/5 point harness up to 40 pounds and then booster afterward, with the youth seats that are designed from scratch to be a 5 point harness system up to 60 or 80 pounds.

They are TWO DIFFERENT BEASTS. Just seeing a seat with a 5 point harness and seeing "up to 80 pounds" on the box DOES NOT mean "up to 80 pounds using the 5 point harness". NOT AT ALL.

So the answer is YES, there are different seats on the market--and more coming every day--that are designed to use the harness well past 40 pounds, even up to 80 pounds, in a manner just like you use the harness with a 25 pound child.

I just don't want anyone to make that mistake of seeing a 5 point harness and wording that says "up to 80 pounds" and assume the two go together. You must read carefully and get the proper one.

A 5 point harness may seem like overkill, but it's not. Physics works.

As for the belt system being designed for an obese adult, guess what: your 5 year old isn't an obese adult. It's not a matter of "more is better;" it's a matter of "being designed for the specific application".

My guess is that a belt system designed for an obese adult will handle him well but will fail miserably when asked to do a proper job on restraining a 50 pound small person. You can't have something like that do everything, and the farther to the outside of the envelope one is, the worse a job the belt will do.

There is no "one size fits all". It's one size because of practicality, but it will vary its efficiency with different people MOST people will be in the safe zone, but SOME people will be at the EDGE of the safe zone.

So bite the bullet and use a 5 point harness for your child. It won't hurt, and it can only help.

[This message has been edited by adam1991 (edited 09-10-2001).]
 

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The seat saver at Right Start only covers part of the seat. If you're looking for more coverage, including the back and sides of the seat, One Step Ahead sells a "Premier Seat Protector" for single and double seats. I'm ordering one today!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Does the Premier Seat Protector say anything about preventing impressions in the seat itself?

The Seat Saver does.

I simply put a nylon cover, intended for spills only, underneath the Seat Saver. Now my toddler's heels don't hit the seat itself when they dangle down.

Best of both worlds.
 

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The Premier Seat Cover doesn't specify. It seems to have a nylon backing, to prevent spills from seeping through, and a fleecy outside for comfort. I like the fact that it is gathered, to fit the seat well without looking messy. It also has openings through which the seat belt buckle fits. We are expecting our Ody EX next Friday (and a baby next month!)-- I'll be ordering the seat covers before it arrives, and before my 6 year old's and 4 year old's boosters are ever on the seats. I'll let you know how it goes.
Estee
 

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I got the seat covers today. They dangle down too, and have a storage pocket by the feet. They are a pleasant grey fleece and have the nylon backing. There are slits for the seatbelt, and the crease at the base of the seatback, as well as the seatback itself, is protected. I highly recommend them; they're nice looking, and I think they're a bargain at $15 for a single seat or $20 for a double.
 
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