10-Year Blogiversary Celebration ~ Clek Fllo Mammoth Convertible *Giveaway*!

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This summer marks a full decade of CarseatBlog.com! We can hardly believe it. In some ways, it seems like not so long ago that we began writing about carseats, child passenger safety, and vehicle safety. In other ways, it feels like we’ve been doing this for eternity! 😀 Along the way we’ve shared a lot of laughs, made amazing friends, written over 1,500 blog posts and reviewed over 120 carseats and boosters!

Whether you’re new to CarseatBlog.com or have been with us since the start in 2008 – we’d like to share our celebration (and our cupcakes) with you! You are the reason we’re still here 10 years later, still blogging away, always looking for ways to improve our content and better serve our readers.

For the past 2 months, we’ve been celebrating by giving away some awesome carseats! Consider it a personal “thank you” from Darren, Heather, Kecia, Jennie, Alicia, Katie and all of our guest bloggers at CarseatBlog!

This week we’ve partnered with our generous friends at Clek, to give away their new Clek Fllo in Mammoth! Mammoth is a charcoal grey fabric made of 100% Australian Merino wool, with no added flame-retardant. Besides being luxuriously soft, Mammoth is a body-temperature regulating, naturally hypoallergenic, breathable fabric.

This giveaway is open to residents of both the USA and Canada!

Clek Fllo Specs:

  • Rear-facing: 14-50 lbs (40 lbs. in Canada), 25-43”, able to sit upright alone, head at least 1” below top of headrest
  • Forward-facing: 22-65 lbs., 30-49”

Features:

  • Designed for extended rear-facing
  • Steel anti-rebound bar
  • Lockoffs for rear-facing and forward-facing
  • Advanced side-impact protection
  • Steel sub-structure with structural headrest
  • 5 sets of harness slots
  • Adjustable crotch strap: 2 separate lengths and 2 buckle positions
  • EACT Safety System: The Energy Absorbing Crumple Technology Safety System is an aluminum honeycomb that sits under the child, designed to absorb crash forces.
  • Narrow: Fllo is one of the narrowest convertibles currently on the market
  • Extended warranty on 2018 models: register your 2018 model Fllo within 90 days to receive an additional 2-year extended warranty.
  • Mammoth cover made from soft 100% Australian Merino wool, with no added chemical flame-retardants.

How to Enter Clek Fllo Mammoth Giveaway:

  • Leave us a comment below (required to be eligible to win), then click on Rafflecopter to qualify yourself.
  • For extra entries, be sure to follow the Rafflecopter instructions to like and follow our Facebook page, like and follow the Clek Facebook Page and tweet about the giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Now for the fine print – winner must have a USA or Canadian shipping address to claim the prize. Only one prize will be awarded. Only one entry per household/family, please. If you leave more than one comment, only the first one will count. We reserve the right to deem any entry as ineligible for any reason, though this would normally only be done in the case of a violation of the spirit of the rules above. We also reserve the right to edit/update the rules for any reason. The contest will close on September 30, 2018, and one random winner will be chosen shortly thereafter. If a winner is deemed ineligible based on shipping restrictions or other issues or does not respond to accept the prize within 7 days, a new winner will be selected.

Please note: If this is your first comment at CarseatBlog, or if you are using a different computer/device or a new email address, your comment may not appear immediately. If you are in the US or Canada, your comment is not lost; it just goes into a moderated queue where it has to be manually approved by one of us. This may take a few hours depending on our availability. If you are outside of the US or Canada, your comment may be blocked by our system. Thank you for understanding, as this is the only way we have to manage spam comments.

Good luck!

Advertisement

Turbo, Take Me Away: Review of the Graco TurboBooster TakeAlong Booster Seat

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Once upon a time, traveling with child restraints was a bulky, heavy, complicated endeavor. In recent years, more lightweight travel options have appeared, especially in the realm of booster seats. The downside to some of these options is that while they’re highly portable, they tend to lack the structure and support kids are used to. Enter the new Graco TurboBooster TakeAlong, which might be the perfect marriage of portability and convention.

TurboBooster TakeAlong Specifications

  • Weight range: 40-100 lbs. (highback and backless)
  • Height range: 43-57 inches (highback and backless)
  • Age range: 4 years and older (highback and backless)
  • Lowest belt guide: 14″
  • Tallest belt guide: 19.25″
  • Measurements
    • Base, widest point without cup holders: 15.5″
    • Base, widest point with cup holders: 18.5″
    • Width of base at back of seat: 15.5″
    • Width at torso wings: 17.5″
    • Seat depth: 14″
    • Internal width at armrests: 11.5″

TurboBooster TakeAlong Features

  • Available in highback (converts to backless) or backless-only models
  • FastAction fold strap for easy disassembly
  • Six headrest/belt guide positions (highback use)
  • Two retractable cup holders
  • EPS foam in head portion
  • Detachable belt guide (backless use)
  • Carry bag for backless portion

  

Portability

Before we look at how the TurboBooster TakeAlong fits with cars and kids, let’s take a look at what makes this seat unique: It’s folding and portability.

10-Year Blogiversary Celebration ~ Cybex Sirona M Convertible *Giveaway*!

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This summer marks a full decade of CarseatBlog.com! We can hardly believe it. In some ways, it seems like not so long ago that we began writing about carseats, child passenger safety, and vehicle safety. In other ways, it feels like we’ve been doing this for eternity! 😀 Along the way we’ve shared a lot of laughs, made amazing friends, written over 1,500 blog posts and reviewed over 120 carseats and boosters!

Whether you’re new to CarseatBlog.com or have been with us since the start in 2008 – we’d like to share our celebration (and our cupcakes) with you! You are the reason we’re still here 10 years later, still blogging away, always looking for ways to improve our content and better serve our readers.

During the next 10 weeks, we’re celebrating by giving away some awesome carseats, so stay tuned! Each week will feature a new giveaway promotion and your odds of winning something are pretty darn good. Consider it a personal “thank you” from Darren, Heather, Kecia, Jennie, Alicia, Katie and all of our guest bloggers at CarseatBlog!

This week we’ve partnered with our generous friends at CYBEX, to give away their new Sirona M with SensorSafe 2.0 Convertible! Sirona M is a feature-rich technology seat, designed to be used with an app. The app tells you if your child has undone their chest clip, if they’re in the safe temperature zone, or if you’ve walked away from your vehicle without your child. The SensorSafe 2.0 app also includes your instruction manual and some vehicle-specific information as well. SensorSafe 2.0 works in conjunction with a receiver plug that is inserted in your vehicle’s ODB port. Winner will have their choice of available Sirona M fashions!

CYBEX Sirona M Specs:

  • Rear-facing 5-40 lbs., head at least 1″ below top of headrest
  • Forward-facing 22-65 lbs., 49″ or less

Features:

  • SensorSafe 2.0 integrates important safety technology into the smart chest clip
  • No-rethread harness with 12 height positions
  • 10-position adjustable base
  • L.S.P. (Linear SIP) bolsters
  • Lockoffs for both RF & FF
  • Push-on LATCH connectors
  • Infant insert
  • Cupholder

   

How to Enter Sirona M Giveaway:

  • Leave us a comment below (required to be eligible to win), then click on Rafflecopter to qualify yourself.
  • For extra entries, be sure to follow the Rafflecopter instructions to like and follow our Facebook page, like and follow the CybexUS Facebook Page and tweet about the giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Now for the fine print – winner must have a USA shipping address to claim the prize. Only one prize will be awarded. Only one entry per household/family, please. If you leave more than one comment, only the first one will count. We reserve the right to deem any entry as ineligible for any reason, though this would normally only be done in the case of a violation of the spirit of the rules above. We also reserve the right to edit/update the rules for any reason. The contest will close on September 23, 2018, and one random winner will be chosen shortly thereafter. If a winner is deemed ineligible based on shipping restrictions or other issues or does not respond to accept the prize within 7 days, a new winner will be selected. Good luck!

Please note: If this is your first comment at CarseatBlog, or if you are using a different computer/device or a new email address, your comment may not appear immediately. If you are in the US or Canada, your comment is not lost; it just goes into a moderated queue where it has to be manually approved by one of us. This may take a few hours depending on our availability. If you are outside of the US or Canada, your comment may be blocked by our system. Thank you for understanding, as this is the only way we have to manage spam comments.

Good luck!

Rear-facing is no longer 5x safer. Really?

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You may have heard that the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recently updated their recommendations on rear-facing. As usual, there’s some good news and some bad news. As with our carseat reviews, we will discuss both the good and the not-so-good and try to offer some perspective lacking in national news coverage of this update.

The Good News: The basic recommendation for rear-facing has NOT changed. “The Academy continues to recommend that all children ride in a rear-facing car safety seat as long as possible, up to the manufacturer’s stated weight and length limits.” This updated guidance from the AAP now better matches NHTSA’s policy for consistency in messaging. The authors of CarseatBlog have strongly supported Extended Rear-Facing (ERF) for over 15 years and continue to support this practice.

ERF in 2003 – now off to college!

The Bad News: As we reported a year ago, a major study from 2007 was found to be flawed. This study was the main source of injury data to compare rear-facing child restraint systems (RFCRS) to forward-facing child restraints (FFCRS) in the USA, for children up to 23 months old. It was also the basis for the erroneous ‘Rear-facing is 5x safer’ statistic. Newer research found some contradictory data, causing the original study to be retracted. A revised study, by some of the authors of the original 2007 study, concluded, “Non-US field data and laboratory tests support the recommendation that children be kept in RFCRS for as long as possible, but the US NASS-CDS field data are too limited to serve as a strong statistical basis for these recommendations.” This led to the evolving AAP advice that, “…while the trend was for rear-facing to be superior to forward-facing for children under 2 years, the numbers were too low to reach statistical significance.” Definitely not as compelling as 5x safer.

More Good News:  The reason there is no significant real-world information is because the sample size of injuries to children in car seats is so low during the 22 year study period that there simply isn’t enough data to compare rear-facing to forward-facing conclusively. In fact, all these studies included less than severe injuries just to do an analysis, because there are so few data points for severe/fatal injuries to kids in child restraints. According to the revised study, “NASS-CDS data indicate an extremely low injury rate in children up to 2 years of age in both RFCRS and FFCRS. It turns out that both rear-facing and forward-facing car seats do a very good job of protecting children within the relevant age/weight/height limits!

Because the real-world injury data in the USA no longer supports that rear-facing is significantly safer for kids up to 23 months old, the AAP removed the portion of their policy statement recommending that kids remain rear-facing until at least 2 years old. Also, since the original study is retracted, we have to pretend that it never existed. Therefore, we can no longer claim that rear-facing is proven to be five times safer than forward-facing. We can’t even say that statistics prove that rear-facing reduces the real-world risk of serious injury for kids up to 2 years old [or to any age] in the USA.  On the plus side, the 2011 AAP policy on rear-facing to at least age 2 led to a lot of awareness about the safety advantages of rear-facing.

Let’s take a step back and examine the most recent AAP policy statements to put these minimum age recommendations in perspective. Fundamentally, the policies on rear-facing haven’t changed, except for the inclusion of minimums. For over 15 years, the AAP has continued to recommend that kids remain rear-facing to the limits of their car safety seat. In essence, “as long as possible.”

AAP 2018: All infants and toddlers should ride in a rear-facing car safety seat (CSS) as long as possible, until they reach the highest weight or height allowed by their CSS’s manufacturer. Most convertible seats have limits that will permit children to ride rear-facing for 2 years or more.

AAP 2011: All infants and toddlers should ride in a rear-facing car safety seat (CSS) until they are 2 years of age or until they reach the highest weight or height allowed by the manufacturer of their CSS.

AAP 2002: Children should face the rear of the vehicle until they are at least one year of age and weigh at least 20 lb. Infants younger than one year who weigh 20 lb should still face the back of the car in a convertible seat or one that is approved for higher weights. For optimal protection, the child should remain facing the rear of the car until reaching the maximum weight for the car safety seat, as long as the top of the child’s head is below the top of the seat back.

Clearly, this is not the end for extended rear-facing. The retraction of the main study supporting ERF in the USA is indeed a big loss, but not a total surprise because this study had known flaws long before this retraction. Again, the fundamental guidance HAS NOT CHANGED. We still recommend kids remain rear-facing, preferably for 2 years or longer if they are within the rear-facing height and weight limits of their carseat. In particular, parents should pay close attention to the seated torso height limit of the rear-facing seat (which typically requires 1″ or more of shell above the head).

As always, we like to remind parents that these recommendations from the AAP are safest practice guidelinesThey aren’t rules or laws. The rules a parent must follow are those printed in their car seat and vehicle owners manuals, on the car seat labels and in any relevant state law. CarseatBlog endorses the AAP guidelines for added safety. We also like to offer perspective by looking at the BIG picture. The biggest reductions in risk come from the following simple steps:

  1. Drive unimpaired and undistracted
  2. Keep all passengers properly restrained according to the instruction manuals and state law
  3. Kids under 13 years in an appropriate rear seating position

So please, buckle up and drive safely!

See our Rear-Facing Links Guide for additional information.