Post # 1
I’m a FTM due mid-March. Long story short, DH and I registered for an infant carrier/car seat with two bases, which we’ll use in our two cars when the baby is little; and then we registered for two bigger car seats for when the baby outgrows the infant one. One of our family members just ordered one of the bigger seats off our registry and had it delivered to our house. It arrived today. Of course in the meantime I’ve learned all kinds of things I never knew before about car seats, like expiration dates and all kinds of other factors that affect the overall structure and safety of the seat.
So I guess my question is twofold. First, should we keep the bigger seat(s) for when the baby outgrows the infant one? Or return them and keep the store credit for a year from now or whenever the baby needs the bigger seat? I didn’t open up the box yet, so I haven’t checked the manufacture or expiration dates. (It’s the Britax Marathon 70-G3, if that matters at all.) I guess I’m just worried that, receiving the seat so far ahead of when we’re going to use it, now we’re going to risk the seat expiring before baby’s even close to outgrowing it.
And then my second question is, if we do keep it/them, are there proper storage precautions we should take? They’re fairly cumbersome, obviously, and we have very little closet space in our house. So they would have to be stored either in our basment or attic, neither of which is temperature controlled. Is that something to worry about? I mean, I guess the seats would be subjected to even more extreme temps sitting in a car in the dead of summer or winter, so I’m thinking that’s not an issue, but just want to make sure there’s not some difference there that I’m not thinking of.
Thanks, all! 🙂
Post # 3
@LoveMikey: Whoops, can someone please move this to the babies or parenting board? Thank you!!
Post # 4
@LoveMikey: Most car seats are good for 5-7 years! So if you can find a place to store it (and I wouldn’t put it in the attic or basement), I’d keep it.
But if you can exchange it for something else, I would do that!
Post # 5
Just a note, I don’t have babies yet. I learned all of this from working for my mom in her daycare.
Carseats (for a toddler) are usually good for 6-10 years after the date of manufacture. Every brand is different, so I suggest looking at the seat to see when it was made and when it will expire. There should be a sticker somewhere on the back or side of the seat that will tell you everything you need to know. Babies usually outgrow the infant seat around 1 year old or shortly after that, depending on their height and weight, and then they can start using the bigger toddler carseat until they reach the max height or weight restriction set by your local law.
The only real reason a seat should not be used is if you got it second hand (actually, never do that) since you don’t know it’s history. Like if it was involved in a collision. Collisions compromise carseats whether or not the kid was in the seat at the time, so they should be thrown out afterwards.
You shouldn’t have a problem storing it, and it doesn’t sound like it’s going to be for a super long time. Keep it out of the elements and at a fairly steady temperature and it will be okay. Sometimes the instruction manuals give advice on how to store the seat when you’re not using it, so see if yours says anything.
Post # 6
You could store it, but until you know you have everything else you need immediately I wouldn’t unbox it and would probably plan to exchange it for something more useful. It will be awhile before you need the car seat.
Also if you plan to buy a lot of other britax items I believe they give you the marathon for free if you purchase a certain 5.
ETA: it’s actually this deal and not the marathon but still a nice car seat.
Post # 7
Thanks, ladies! I didn’t open the box to check the sticker yet, so I didn’t realize the life span was so long. That is comforting at least. But as for storage, it’s really attic, basement or nothing, so that is something for me to think about. Just out of curiosity, if a seat can last that long in a blazing hot/freezing cold car, what’s the danger of storing it in the basement/attic? Both spaces are clean and dry, just warm in the summer and cold in the winter — nothing close to the extremes of a car outside, though. That said, I’ll definitely check the manual to see what the manufacturer suggests. I just love to also have real-life insight as well for these sorts of things.
I absolutely would NOT purchase a second-hand seat, or accept a hand-me-down! That much I already knew was a major no-no. 🙂
@MsJ2theZ: We don’t have any immediate plans for more Britax items, but that is really good to know. Thanks!
Post # 8
@LoveMikey: “Just out of curiosity, if a seat can last that long in a blazing hot/freezing cold car, what’s the danger of storing it in the basement/attic?”
My thoughts exactly.
We had a baby capsule (up to 4-6 months only) and kept it in our shed in between babies, no problems.
And: If you want to see the instructions (for storage purposes) without opening the box, there’s a good chance you can find the instruction manual online somewhere. If you can’t, you might be able to phone the manufacturer and ask.
Post # 9
It should be fine to store in either place, as long as it won’t get wet and mildewy. I wouldn’t store it too far away though, my friend ended up moving her son out of his infant seat and into his baby/toddler seat (5-40lbs rear facing) at 3 months. He is a big, long boy and it made no sense to lug him around in the infant seat when he was perfectly comfortable in the bigger seat.
ETA: The Marathon 70-G3 is also 5-40lbs rear facing and is perfectly safe with the infant insert for a 5lb baby. If you end up having a long baby, you might find it’s easier/more comfy for them in the larger seat sooner than you’d think!
Post # 10
@paula1248: Awesome, thanks. Glad to hear you had no problems with yours! I’ll definitely look up the instructions online and check it out. I don’t want to make assumptions about the basement/attic before I do all my research. But I appreciate the real-life, first-hand feedback for sure.
@saraja87: Yeah, I think there’s a good chance our guy will be pretty big too. Thankfully our attic is just a staircase away from our bedroom and super easy to access! So if we do store it and do need it sooner rather than later, it’ll take all of 30 seconds to grab it and bring it downstairs.