Expecting #5....Vehicle questions...

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Joined: 03/20/12
Posts: 16
Expecting #5....Vehicle questions...

We are expecting #5 in November. I realize it is early, but I am worried about the vehicle situation. We will have 2 in booster seats 2 in convertible seats and then the pumpkin seat (ages when baby is born will be 6, 5, 3, and almost 2yrs). We currently drive a toyota sienna. I really want to get three accross the back. If not I guess we will need to find a way to purchase a Suburban. Can all of you with large famlilies give me some input on your vehicles and carseats? Thanks so much!

CamelNoodle's picture
Joined: 07/28/04
Posts: 908

The narrowest carseat is the Sunshine Kids Radian. It can fit three across in most cars. It's not cheap, but way cheaper than a new Suburban. The Radian 80 goes to 80 lbs and is a 5 point harness, my 7 year old still fits fine in it.

We have a Honda Odyssey and we hear that 3 Radians will fit in the last row.

**Tiffany**'s picture
Joined: 11/21/03
Posts: 1230

Well I'm no help really we have a Ford Econoline 12 seater van. Even with 6 kids and one on the way we fit in our carseats (3 at present, 4 when baby's born well). I thought I would start a GTKY (getting to know you) question to get the board moving! If anyone else wants to ask one just start a new thread with another question!
Q1: How did you and DH/SO/Baby's Father meet?

Joined: 12/01/05
Posts: 1000

We have a Sienna. We have 3 kids in booster seats and will be adding a baby seat. This is child #6, and we have the 8-seater. I'm thinking I will have 2 boosters in the back and one booster and a baby in front. I don't want to have to crawl over the seats to put the baby in the far back. I guess you will have to go back there to seat one of your little kiddos, though. My next vehicle will be a 10-seater van, possibly a Dodge/Mercedes Sprinter.

MrsSchepp's picture
Joined: 12/30/06
Posts: 496

We have 3 in car seats. We love the Radians! Super slim Smile We bought an expedition before Finn was born because our van only had 7 seats. We love it! Plenty of room for us!

Joined: 07/20/08
Posts: 40

I agree with all of the posters saying Radians. They are the best thing ever for putting a lot of kids in one vehicle.

Joined: 03/20/12
Posts: 16

Thanks for the input, I will look into the radian. It is just a matter of being able to buckle in our two in booster seats on each side of the 5 pt. harness seat. Any thoughts on slim boosters? I have what I think is the slimmest (althought I don't remember what brand they are at the moment). I appreciate your help!

CamelNoodle's picture
Joined: 07/28/04
Posts: 908

We actually moved our DS1 out of a booster back into a Radian because it was easier to keep the Radian buckled in and have him put on the 5 point harness than buckle a booster.

Joined: 07/21/02
Posts: 1007

That is actually why we moved to a bigger car sooner than we needed--my older 2 both moved to boosters within a year of each other and it was difficult for them and us to buckle them when ds2 was in the middle with a harnessed seat. So we moved from a 5 seat explorer to an 8 seat yukon. Right now we keep the folding "access" seat in the middle row folded up so the older 2 can climb in back and buckle themselves and ds2 and ds3 are next to each other in the middle row--one ff one rf. If we have a 5th, I hope ds1 is big enough to be out of a booster (but if it is in a year and a half like we are thinking, I'm not sure!). He is almost 50 lbs now and is 8 yo. I don't think he is quite tall enough or heavy enough to be out of a booster for a while yet. Car arrangements are hard! GL with it!

Joined: 03/20/12
Posts: 16

I think my dh and I have figured out a solution...this may help other moms out there too. The main issue is being able to buckle the boys (who are in boosters). There is enough room to squeeze in the seats (although I still may buy a radian just for extra room) however there is no way to buckle in the boys in the boosters. We discovered that you can buy seatbelt extenders, that way the buckle can sit up higher and can be accessed easily.

Joined: 12/10/05
Posts: 1681

I'm in the exact same situation as you, except I'm due sooner Smile

We drive an Odyssey and, like you, will have 2 in boosters, 2 in 5 pts, and the newborn. We're going to put the two boosters beside each other in the back row with the Radian on the outside (so I can easily reach for buckling). Then the new baby and other 5 pt seat will be in the second row.

I went to a car seat clinic and fortunately they had a Radian I could test for fit. The back row did work with my turbo boosters, but I found an even narrower seat (the Harmony booster) that has a low profile and will be very easy for the kids to buckle themselves in.

Starryblue702's picture
Joined: 04/06/11
Posts: 5454

Sorry I have no advice to give! I drive a Mazda CX-9, but I only have one baby seat and one booster for DD. I love all the new stuff I read on here though! Good luck... and BTW you might want to stick with your Sienna as SUVs are CRAZY on gas milage! I had an Escalade EXT (back when I only had two kids lol) and I think I got about 13 MPG with that thing!

Joined: 03/20/12
Posts: 16

I will be checking out this harmony booster as well. We have two captains seats in the middle row, so that is where one of the 5pt. seats will go and also the pumpkin seat for the baby. I agree with pp that gas mileage would be terrible in an suv. I am thinking if we did end up with a 6th we would trade our current sienna for another sienna with the extra seat. Figuring all of this out does make me feel at ease. As much fun as it would be to drive a big SUV, with gast at 4.00/gallon, I think I would be stuck at home! Thanks for all of the input!

Joined: 01/25/02
Posts: 2023

I don't know that we are even going to have a 5th as of right now, but we may need a new vehicle at that point. We have a very old Voyager, I think. lol. It just has a lap belt for the middle seat in the back. My daughter is almost 10, but on the small side and prefers her booster, so she is still in it. My son is 7 and Utah law says booster until they are 8, so he is in one as well. And then the twins are in the convertible seat. We have one baby in the back row and one in the middle row, because I was tired of the older two fighting. lol. It is such a pain to get back baby in and buckled and such. I should move them back. Our van does have the built in car seats as well.. so I like having a booster over one of those in case I need to transport an extra kiddo, which sometimes happens.