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Safety Archive

Evenflo Buckle Recall: Convertible and Combination Harnessed/Booster Seats

Recalled “QT” Buckle

After the recent Graco recall of the same AmSafe “QT” buckle, we figured it was only a matter of time until Evenflo recalled their convertible and combination seats with the same buckle. That recall will be officially announced by NHTSA sometime later today. The good news is that Evenflo already stopped using those QT buckles so most Evenflo products with a recent DOM (Date of Manufacture) shouldn’t be affected by this recall.

Evenflo carseats NOT affected by this recall include Tribute, Triumph and Titan 50. Evenflo infant seats are also not included in this recall.

NHTSA finally announced the recall and stated that Evenflo is voluntarily recalling more than 1.3 million carseats for buckles that could increase the risk of injury if the child could not be removed quickly in an emergency. “The buckle may become stuck in a latched position, making it difficult to remove a child from the seat. This could prove critical to a child’s safety in the case of an emergency.”

evenflo

Model Name Model # Starts With Affected Dates
Chase LX and Chase DLX  (Original Chase model) 329 8/23/2011 through 3/3/2014
Chase / Chase LX / Chase Select (New Chase model) 306 6/12/2012 through 10/3/2013
Maestro / Maestro Performance 310 8/22/2011 through 10/17/2013
Momentum 65 / Momentum 65 LX  and Momentum 65 DLX 385 3/4/2013 through 8/26/2013
Secure Kid LX / Secure Kid DLX / Secure Kid 100 / Secure Kid 300 / Secure Kid 400 and Snugli Booster 308 12/13/2011 through 3/3/2014
Symphony (all models) 345 or 346 10/2/2012 through 8/26/2013
SureRide and Titan 65 371 6/20/2012 through 10/17/2013
www.CarseatBlog.com    ©2014 All Rights Reserved

 Keller 65 DLX65Evenflo SureRide

What you need to know if you have a recalled model:

The “fix” for the recall is a different buckle. Registered owners will receive a letter notifying them that their seat is affected and directing them to call customer service (aka ParentLink) or visit www.buckle.evenflo.com to order the replacement buckle. If you already know you have a recalled model CLICK ON THIS LINK to order your replacement buckle(s). You will need the model number and Date of Manufacturer (DOM) of your seat.

The model number and DOM can be found on a white sticker. If your carseat is installed you will have to uninstall it to find the white sticker – it is usually on the back or the bottom of the shell. Your sticker probably looks something like this:

Evenflo DOM Sticker - recall info

 

Official Buckle Recall Information from Evenflo (including contact info, buckle cleaning tips, buckle replacement instructions and videos) can be found here:  www.buckle.evenflo.com

Statement from Evenflo:

Dear Safety Advocates:

Thank you for being a trusted partner and helping Evenflo keep children safe!  As you know, we have a 90 year history of putting safety and consumers above everything else and appreciate your partnership in doing this.

On Friday, April 4th, Evenflo will announce a voluntary recall of select convertible car seats and harnessed booster seats due to an issue in the harnessed crotch buckle.  The buckles meet all requirements for crashworthiness, but may become resistant to unlatching over time due to contaminants (like food and drink) that are present in everyday use by toddlers.  Evenflo is taking this proactive, preventive action to address an issue that was recently observed by NHTSA.

Our goal is to make this experience as easy for the consumer as possible and we will be sending replacement buckles to consumers and developing videos to show them how to install the new buckle.   While consumers wait for their buckles, we are recommending that they clean the buckles thoroughly, as instructed on the back of the buckle, if they are experiencing any issues.  All relevant information can be found at www.buckle.evenflo.com

Evenflo has worked to put the needs of our consumers first and hope that we can count on your support as we work through this issue and continue to strive for excellence as we build our products for the future.

FYI – Only the “QT” buckle (pictured above) is recalled. The buckles pictured below are NOT included in this recall so if your Evenflo convertible or combination harness/booster seat has a buckle that looks like either of these – don’t worry about it, it’s fine.

Evenflo Buckle – NOT Recalled

 

Evenflo Buckle – NOT Recalled

 

Graco Expands Buckle Recall to Include Additional Convertible & Combination Seats

If you are the owner of a Graco convertible or combination seat that has one of the recalled buckle designs pictured below, and your carseat was not included in the initial recall period because it was made either before or after the initial recall period of January 2009 – July 2013, please note that your seat is now included in this expanded recall.

From Graco:

“To alleviate any additional concerns, Graco has decided to include the harness buckles used on all toddler convertible car seats and harnessed boosters manufactured from 2006 through 2009 in its recent recall. For any concerned parent or guardian, we will continue to offer a replacement harness buckle at no cost. Consumers can place their order online at GracoBuckleRecall.com and  can continue to use their car seat while waiting for the new buckle. We want to stress that our car seats are safe and effective in restraining children. For additional questions, consumers can contact our customer service team at 800-345-4109 or consumerservices@gracobaby.com.”

MODEL NAME                     AFFECTED DATES

Argos 70

Argos 70 Elite

5/1/2011 through 7/31/2013

Classic Ride 50 10/1/2011 through 9/30/2013
Comfort Sport

Ready Ride

10/1/2010 through 9/30/2013
Cozy Cline

Step 2

1/1/2006 through 4/30/2010
My Ride 65

My Ride 65 with Safety Surround

4/1/2009 through 7/31/2013; and 9/30/2013
My Ride 70 5/1/2012 through 7/31/2013
My Size 70

Size 4 Me 70

Head Wise 70 with Safety Surround

1/1/2012 through 7/31/2013; and 8/3/2013
Nautilus 3-in-1

Nautilus Plus

Nautilus Elite

10/1/2007 through 7/31/2013; and 8/19/2013
Smart Seat

Smart Seat with Safety Surround

12/1/2010 through 9/30/2013; and 10/9/2013, 12/25/2013, 1/10/2014

From NHTSA: 

On March 7, 2014, Graco informed NHTSA it would be including an additional 403,222 seats in this recall, including certain model year 2006 through 2014 Argos 70 Elite, Ready Ride, Step 2, My Ride 65 with Safety Surround, My Size 70, Head Wise 70 with Safety Surround, Nautilus 3-in-1, Nautilus Plus, and Smart Seat with Safety Surround. The defect involves difficulty in unlatching the harness buckle. In some cases, the buckle becomes stuck in a latched condition so that it cannot be opened by depressing the buckle’s release button. It may be difficult to remove the child from the restraint, increasing the risk of injury in the event of a vehicle crash, fire, or other emergency, in which a prompt exit from the vehicle is required. Graco is offering to replace the buckle with a new design, free of charge. Registered owners will be notified beginning around early April 2014, and offered the free replacement buckle. All other owners may contact Graco at 1-800-345-4109 (toll-free) or 1-330-869-7225, or online at www.consumerservices@gracobaby.com.

Where do they grow these giant kids?

Boost_Til_8We’ve all seen it before. I’m talking about the information in pamphlets and flyers regarding kids and booster seats. Most read like this: Kids should remain in booster seats until they are at least 8 years old, unless they are 4’9″ tall.

Excuse me? I don’t know where this age 8 came from but where I live we don’t see too many kids who are almost 5 feet tall at 8 years or younger. I’m sure they’re out there but seriously, most 2nd and 3rd Graders are NOT the size of small adults. So what gives?

Honestly, I have no idea why it’s so common to see age 8 listed as the “magic number” when kids can graduate to the adult seatbelt. Yes, I realize that it often says “at least 8″ but trust me when I say that it’s not the “at least” part that most parents remember. Most don’t even remember the 4’9″ part of the message. So where does that magic #8 come from? They sure aren’t referencing the CDC growth charts!

Maybe it’s a social change thing. We’re still getting a lot of parents used to the idea that their 6 and 7-year-olds need a booster. Perhaps we’re worried that we’ll turn them off completely and they’ll think we’re all nuts if we tell them the truth. And age 8 seems like a reasonable number for most parents to ditch the booster seat, right?

8 year old still needs a booster!

Wrong.

Most 8-year-old kids do not fit safely in the adult seatbelt of most vehicles. Sure, there are always exceptions, like some 3rd row seats which are clearly designed with smaller people in mind. But generally speaking, most kids do not actually pass the 5-Step Test until they are at least 57″ (4’9″ tall). For many kids even 57″ tall isn’t tall enough to get optimal belt fit.

Now, let’s have a look at those handy-dandy CDC growth charts. An 8-year-old boy who measures in the 95th percentile for both weight and height is 35kg (77 lbs) and 54″ tall.  And an 8-year-old boy who measures in the 50th percentile for weight and height is 25kg (55 lbs) and 50″ tall. According to the growth charts – a boy who measures in the 95th percentile for height won’t hit 4’9″ (57″) until he is 9 years old. That kid in the 50th percentile won’t get there until he’s 11. And a kid in the 10th percentile for height will be 13 before they reach 4’9″.

So I’d like to know where they grow these huge 8-year-olds that everyone seems to be referencing? We know that we’re failing epically at keeping kids in boosters until they are really big enough to fit properly in the adult seatbelt but maybe our “helpful” literature and awareness campaigns are partially to blame? I think it’s time to ditch all references to 8-year-olds and move to something more realistic like 10-12.

NHTSA Questions Graco’s Logic Regarding Recent Buckle Recall

NHTSALast month, Graco recalled close to 3.8 million carseats due to an issue with sticky buckles. However, they did not issue a recall for 1.8 million infant carseats, including all the various SnugRide models, which have used the same buckle in the past. Many parents have questioned the decision not to recall the infant seats, and now NHTSA has ordered Graco to explain their reasoning. Graco will have until March 20 to respond to the agency’s request.

preemie

In the meantime, if you do need a replacement buckle for a Graco infant seat, you can request one by calling Graco 800-345-4109  (Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.). For more info on the buckle recall please see:  https://www.pages02.net/newellrubbermaid/harness-buckles .  For Canada, please see the Transport Canada Recall Information and Graco Baby Canada.