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Instructional Archive

Rear-Facing Carseats With European Beltpath Routing

imageEuropean beltpath routing. If you’re not already familiar with the term – let me explain. It references a particular way to install a rear-facing convertible or infant carseat without using the base. European belt routing is only for installations using the vehicle’s lap/shoulder seatbelt. It does not apply to installations using the lower LATCH anchors or to installation of the infant seat base. Only a few seats sold here in the U.S. allow European belt routing but it has become a popular feature so we decided to make a list of which seats currently available allow it.

Benefits of European Belt Routing:

When the shoulder belt is routed behind the shell of a rear-facing child restraint it helps to maintain a semi-upright position during a frontal crash. Limiting the downward rotation that a rear-facing seat makes during a frontal crash has several potential benefits. Maintaining a more upright angle during a crash means the impact loads are distributed more to the back of the child – which is ideal. The more a rear-facing seat rotates downward in a crash the more the impact loads are applied to the child’s shoulders and neck – as it stretches, pulling away from the body. The other potential benefit of maintaining a more upright orientation during a crash is that it may reduce the likelihood of the carseat striking the back of the front seat or console directly in front of it.

Installation Issues & Incompatibilities:

The biggest potential issue with Euro beltpath routing is that some seatbelts aren’t long enough to accommodate this routing. If that winds up being the case in your vehicle – you can install the seat without the base using the traditional seatbelt installation method instead. None of the carseats that allow Euro bethpath routing actually require it. They may recommend it, but they don’t mandate it. That’s because the carseat manufacturers understand that it’s not possible in all vehicles due to seatbelt length which varies from vehicle to vehicle.

 

Rear-Facing Carseats that Allow Euro Beltpath Routing:

Infant (Rear-Facing Only) Seats

Model Rear-Facing Wt Limits Rear-Facing Ht Limits
Cybex Aton 4-32 lbs. up to 30"
Cybex Aton 2 4-35 lbs. up to 30"
Cybex Aton Q 4-35 lbs. up to 30"
Graco Classic Connect SnugRide 35* 4-35 lbs. 32" or less
Maxi-Cosi Mico AP 5-22 lbs. 19-29"
Maxi-Cosi Mico NXT 5-22 lbs. 19-29"
Nuna Pipa 4-35 lbs less than 32"
Peg Perego Primo Viaggio 4-35 4-35 lbs up to 32"
UPPABaby Mesa 4-35 lbs 32" or less
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*Graco now officially allows European beltpath routing ONLY with the Classic Connect Graco SnugRide 35. This update is retroactive and applies to all Classic Connect SnugRide 32/35 models.

 

Convertible Seats

Model Rear-Facing Wt Limits Rear-Facing Ht Limits
Combi Coccoro 3-33 lbs up to 36"
www.CarseatBlog.com  © 2014 All Rights Reserved

coccoro euro beltpath routing

 

CarseatBlog Quick Tip: Proper Harness Tightness

One of the top 3 mistakes we see at checkup events is a harness that’s too loose. Nearly *every* infant seat I see when I’m out and about has a loose harness. How do you know if your child’s harness is tight enough?

Also, see The Pinch Test.

CarseatBlog Quick Tip: Checking Install Tightness

Aren’t quite sure how to tell if your carseat is installed tightly enough? Here’s how you check.

Caps for Sale – converting your retail model Evenflo Maestro into an institutional model without cup holders

CapsForSaleCaps for Sale was one of my favorite books when I was a kid and it also makes an appropriate title for this blog! :)

As many of our readers know, retail models of the Evenflo Maestro come with cup holders that are permanent once they are attached to the shell. However, “institutional” versions of the same seats (sold to CPS programs) come without cup holders. In their place are little plastic caps that cover the holes in the shell where the cup holders attach. While most parents (and kids) are happy to have a carseat with dual integrated cup holders – those features take up a little extra room. For a parent or caregiver trying to fit two carseats side-by-side or 3-across the back of a small or mid-size vehicle – the lack of cup holders on the Maestro can make the difference between installation success and failure. 

    

I recently discovered that Evenflo will sell the little caps separately to consumers who own Maestro models. Now, if you’ve already attached the cup holders then this info won’t help you because you can’t detach the cup holders once they’re locked into place. If you try to pry them off, you’ll probably wind up damaging your seat and no one wants that to happen. However, if you have a new Maestro that hasn’t been “assembled” yet, you can call Evenflo Customer Service (aka Parent Link), give them your Maestro model # and order “Armrest Cap” (Item # 24101591). For a pair of caps, it should cost around $7.50 with shipping included.

FYI – It’s very important to cover the holes in the shell with either the caps or the cup holders otherwise your child can get a finger trapped in there.

  

Side-by-side difference:

The Ultimate Manufacturers’ Name Guide

Britax has gone and done it again. Way back in the ‘90s they were once known as Brit-axe, pronounced like Britain. Then they decided that to sound more Southern, they needed to give their “i” a long sound, so they became Br-eye-tax (can’t you just hear some Southern Belle pronouncing that?). Now they’ve changed again (sheesh, make up your minds already!) and we’re left scratching our heads. Carseat manufacturers are no different than any other companies we come across in our daily lives where we wonder how to pronounce their names. Here’s a list of the manufacturers and their pronunciations.

babytrend

Baby Trend: Bay-bee Trend. Bet you didn’t see that one coming.

Britax logo_G+R_CMYK

Britax: Brit-axe. Kind of like a blonde gal named Britt coming after you with an axe.

bubblebum

BubbleBum: Bubb-l Bum. Blow a bubble and stick it on your bum.

chicco

Chicco: Key-ko. It’s not Chee-ko like they tell you at BRU, for gosh sakes!

clek

Clek: The sound a rigid LATCH connector makes when it attaches to a LATCH anchor. Clek. Don’t know what that sounds like? Buy a Foonf, Oobr, Olli, or Ozzi to find out.

combi

Combi USA: Com-bee USA. I’m going to go drive the combine around the farm. A comma is used in a sentence to separate two clauses. Com-bee.

cybex

Cybex: Sigh-bex. Sigh. Cybex

diono

Diono: Dee-oh-no. Not the other way! Get your brain out of the gutter now. C’mon!

dorel

Dorel: Door-el. I wonder how many doors there are at Dorel?

safety1st

Safety 1st: Safe-tee 1st

MaxiCosi

Maxi-Cosi: Max-ee Co-zy

cosco

Cosco: Cos-co. It’s a lot like Cost-co, isn’t it? But it’s NOT. There’s no T. Cosco.

eddiebauer

Eddie Bauer: Ed-dee Bow-wer. Expensive hunter green and tan.

evenflo

Evenflo: Eeeeee-ven-flow. Oh, oops. I put a W on the end. There’s no W there either. Just like there’s no T in Cosco.

snugli

Snugli: Snug-lee. Something your husband gets late at night.

graco

Graco: Gray-co. Not Grack-o crack-o. Gray-co. See, nice and easy!

aprica

Aprica: App-ree-ka. Japanese for stroller. Not really; I’m guessing since I don’t speak Japanese.

teutonia

Teutonia USA: Too-tony-ah USA. Why couldn’t they have spelled it the way I did?

harmony

Harmony: Ebony and Ivory, live together in perfect Har-mony!

kiddy

Kiddy USA: Kidd-ee USA. Here Kiddy Kiddy

kidsembrace

Kids Embrace: Kids Em-br-ace each other in friendship and goodwill

orbitbaby

Orbit Baby: Or-bit Bay-bee. I wonder if they’ll book my trip to Lifesavers for me. Oh wait, that’s Orbitz. Nevermind.

pegperego

Peg Pérego: Peg Per-eggo. Leggo my eggo Peg. If you say it fast enough, it sounds right. They’re Italian, you know.

recaro

Recaro: Ruh-car-oh. Ruh-roh. I need a Scooby snack!

safetrafficsystem

Safe Traffic System: Safe Tr-aff-ic Sys-tem. Whaddya know? That one was easy.

summerinfant

Summer Infant: Sum-mer In-fant. Oh how I wish it was summer right now!

 

tomy

Tomy: Toe-mee. Toe-mee. Toe-mee. Toe-mee.

thefirstyears

The First Years: The Fir-st Yeers. As opposed to The Last Years.

jjcole

JJ Cole: Jay-Jay-Coal. You expect more because of the double initial. You should expect more because of the double initial.

 

So there you have it–now you’re the cool kid on the block who knows how to say all the baby brand manufacturer names. You can impress all your friends when you get together for mimosas and mojitos at playgroup. I double-dog dare you to say Chicco after you’ve had a couple of cocktails ;) .

*We would like to acknowledge that this blog marks an important milestone for us. This is our 1,000th published blog post! Thank you to all our readers who have proven throughout the years that we weren’t crazy to believe that other parents and caregivers would also be interested in a blog about carseats and child passenger safety! :)