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Outgrown

Do you get sad when your child outgrows a carseat?  Maybe they are moving on from rear-facing to forward-facing and you lament about the reduction in safety?  Perhaps the carseat was a sentimental favorite?  Or maybe you’re happy because you’ve always hated the fashion on the carseator were looking for an excuse to buy something new?

My son has been mainly riding in boosters for some time.   He’s over 9 years old and is now over 4 feet, 7 inches tall and nearly 80 pounds.  He’s just about to outgrow the tallest combination seat on the market in 5-point harness mode, the Britax Frontier 90 (or Pinnacle 90).  His days as a CarseatBlog model are numbered.  I am sad, but he sure is happy!

frontier90outgrown

5-point Harness at 9 years old. Britax Frontier 90 (cover lifted at shoulders to show harness straps)

Happy Child Passenger Safety Week!

RibbonSeptember 14-20 is National Child Passenger Safety Week. We at CarseatBlog would like to thank technicians, car seat manufacturers, safety advocates, and parents for everything they do to keep kids safe in the car.

If you need your car seat checked, many organizations are holding events on Seat Check Saturday (September 20) or throughout the week. This is also a good time to share safety information with friends and family.

  • Keep children rear-facing until at least 2 years old.
  • Keep children in a harnessed seat until they fit properly in a booster seat and are mature enough to sit properly in the belt (usually a minimum of 5 years old).
  • Keep children in booster seats until they fit properly in an adult seatbelt. The seatbelt should sit low on the hips, touching the thighs. The shoulder belt should cross the middle of the shoulder, and the child’s knees should bend at the edge of the seat when s/he is sitting all the way back.
  • Children should ride in the back seat until at least 13 years old.
  • Wear your seatbelt, and put down the phone while driving. Kids learn from the adults around them.

Resources to find a local event or fitting station:

Safe Kids USA

NHTSA

2014 ABC Expo Update: What’s New from Cybex

We have a few updates from Cybex, including a look at their new infant seat, the Cloud Q, which was the Best in Show winner at last night’s JPMA Awards–the third year in a row Cybex has won.

Cybex Cloud Q  Cloud Q color selections  Cloud Q JPMA Award

What at makes the Cloud Q unique in the American market is that it reclines, much like the Kiddy infant seat we previewed at last year’s ABC Show, but has yet to materialize.

Basically, as an infant seat it looks nearly identical to the Aton Q. But pop the seat out of the base, pull a handle at the back, and push down…and the seat reclines fully flat. You can do this with the baby in the seat, and can recline/un-recline it while it’s in a compatible stroller. (It can install in the stroller frame facing toward or away from the parent.)

Cloud Q True Blue  Cloud Q Hawaii

Not to worry: safeguards make it impossible to use the seat in the car while fully reclined. There’s no way to snap it into the base that way, and the beltpath on the seat (for baseless installs) closes while it’s reclined, making it so the seatbelt can’t be inserted.

Cybex Cloud on Priam Cloud Air Q on Priam

Here’s a demonstration:

Other changes that make the Cloud Q different from the Aton Q are a 11 positions on the harness height adjustment (vs 8 on the Aton Q), 5 panels on the canopy (vs 4), and a handle that’s a bit sleeker. We also measured the chest clip at about .5 inch smaller.

The prototype weighs 12.6 lbs, which is heavier than many other seats, but keep in mind that the recline feature is bound to add some weight.

There are also some new fashions, including for the Aton 2.

Aton 2 new colors

Attention, Canada! Canadian certification is in the works for Cybex infant seats and will be of “highest priority” as soon as the ABC Show is over.

Next up is the Cybex Solution M-Fix booster. This is similar to the existing Q-Fix, but includes three main changes.

First, the headrest recline on the M-Fix adjusts with a lever. On the Q-Fix, you had to pull up on the headrest and kind of wiggle it into place. Second, the height adjustment is different. On the Q-Fix, the head and torso support move up and down together. On the M-Fix, the torso portion stays in place while the head support moves up and down. Third, the LSP side-impact protection on the M-Fix consists of bolsters that pop out at the touch of a button, verses the fixed outer pillows on the Q-Fix.

Here are some comparison photos of M-Fix and Q-Fix:

Q-Fix vs. M-Fix front view  Cybex M-Fix vs Q-Fix side view  Cybex M-Fix vs Q-Fix side head  Cybex M-Fix vs Q-Fix

The Q-Fix is also getting a slight change. The new model will be called the Solution Q2-Fix and will have bolsters constructed of a different material.

In strollers, Cybex is introducing the Agis M-Air 3 and 4 (depending on how many wheels it has). The stroller has an adjustable-height handle and adjustable-height canopy (so taller and smaller kids can be equally protected). There’s a large basket, one-foot brake, and a one-handed pull-up fold. It will accommodate kids to 50 or 55 lbs.

 

Cybex Agis M-Air 3

Not car-seat-related, but there is a new line of baby gates by Regal-Lager-owned Qdos. The Crystal series is clear, while the Spectrum series comes in several colors to better match specific decor.

Qdos clear   Qdos colored

Another blast from the past. Epinions.

My first child was born in 1998.  We used our Century Smart Fit infant seat for about a year.  That’s when I began my journey as a child passenger safety advocate.  After having great difficulty finding a convertible that fit rear-facing into my Saturn SL2, I ended up with a Britax Roundabout.  Sometime later, I had similar difficulty in finding a combination seat and finally happened upon the Century Next Step.

So, here is a blast from the past, about a month after I started Car-Seat.Org and Car-Safety.Org in 2001.  It was my very first online carseat review at Epinions. at the same time as my original Britax Roundabout review.  We all have to start somewhere!  I was a top reviewer for the Kids & Family category for a while and made at least a few hundred bucks over the years.  I’m glad I deleted the vast majority of my reviews before Epinions shut down its community earlier this year and locked out authors from their accounts.  Yes, Epinions is now a throwback too!

epinions logo