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Child Seats

h2osurf

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Year, Model & Trim Level
99 Sport 4x4
Hey guys, just found out I'm going to be a father, due date isn't until October but I'm starting to do what I can to prepare. One thing that's been nagging me is I have 99 Explorer Sport... are there child seats that will work in the back seats? I know the seats themselves are loose as they are designed to fold forward and aren't necessarily secured in the "seating" position. I don't think this model has child seat hooks... any advice? Ideas?
 



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A Wise Guy

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If you pull your seatbelt all the out until it stops then let it back in you should hear a ratcheting sound. You want to put the seatbelt into that mode when installing the baby seat because it will not let you pull more seatbelt out until it goes all the way in first. Thus securing the baby seat into the truck. Also on my '98 I had to use pool noodles to take up the space between the trucks seat and the base of the baby seat. One noodle cut to the width of the baby seat three times then taped together to hold them into a triangle worked perfectly. A piece of 12 guage wire works well for feeding the seatbelt through the baby seat if your hands don't fit. When you think the seat is tight enough make it tighter.
 






abomb

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For the first 3-9 months or so you'll be using an infant carrier, get one with a removable base and use the center belt to secure the base only. You can use them in the outer positions too, but if you use a rear-facing carrier with a base, you have to move the seat up a bit because they take a lot of room. Otherwise you can belt just the carrier in, but angles are important with rear-facing and it's a PITA to buckle and unbuckle just the carrier. If you put the carrier in the center I found you didn't have to move the seat. We had a Graco carrier with an adjustable base, I found putting it in the middle with it adjusted all the way up would have the seat at the right level.

Our daughter outgrew her carrier around six months, I replaced it with a different graco seat, also in the middle rear-facing, didn't have any problems.

This winter I used a Britax Marathon 85 forward-facing on the passenger side, it was a pain to get it in with the seat belt because then you use the little clip that comes with the seat it's difficult to adjust the slack in the belt... you'll see. Once it's in it's not so much of an issue, the Marathon 85 has an odd belt path that doesn't really work too well with any car (and I've used it in three).

Congrats!
 






h2osurf

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Thanks for the advice and the thoughts. Just a little frazzled and due date is still a long ways off.
 






2TimingTom

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Being that it's a sport, getting the infant carrier through the front doors, passed the seat in the forward position and into the infant carrier base.......won't be fun. It's not impossible, just not ideal. A 4 door will work better. Putting a child in the front seat under 10 (just guessing on the exact age) is a great way to get a ticket and potentially your kid taken away from you- back seat is the only option.
 






Baddecision93

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Thanks for the advice and the thoughts. Just a little frazzled and due date is still a long ways off.

You'll do fine, I'm sure. The fact that you're already thinking about this is a really good indication of the kind of parent you'll be.

My little girl just turned one. Believe me, the base + infant carrier is definitely the way to go when they're itty-bitty. Center seat with the belt ratcheted to a locked position through the base is the ticket, in my opinion.
 






2TimingTom

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You can swing by a fire department and they should be able to show you how to install a seat properly. It's not hard, but it's also easy to not do correctly.
 






A Wise Guy

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You can swing by a fire department and they should be able to show you how to install a seat properly. It's not hard, but it's also easy to not do correctly.

Some will do it by appointment only because they need to have their certified seat person on duty. Same goes for police departments. Best thing to do is call the non emergency number and ask.
 






jad2411

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Hospital gave us a schedule on seat adjusting dates and times at a local shop.
But yeah on a sport is a PITA and I never felt secure with the rear seats not being steady so I got a 4door :)
 






A Wise Guy

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If you have a seat with the metal clip (you will know it when you see it) that goes onto the seatbelt to keep the belt from slipping you won't need it if your seatbelts ratchet in. Thus life got a little easier. But of course don't take my word for it double check the instructions that came with the seat. They have really good lawers who wrote those.
 






h2osurf

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I'm definitely thinking of upgrading to a 4 door, I can't imagine getting a carrier in and out will be fun or easy.

I didn't know that about fire stations, definitely something to look into and see what they have to say. My biggest concern with a seat back there is the seats don't "lock" down and have about 4-5 inches of movement and I don't see how that will be a solid base.
 






2TimingTom

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If you get a 3rd gen Explorer (if you stay in the Explorer family), it should have the LATCH anchor points. These make installing a child seat nearly impossible to screw up. I have them in my VUE and love them. I really wish my Explorer had them.
 






jad2411

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If you get a 3rd gen Explorer (if you stay in the Explorer family), it should have the LATCH anchor points. These make installing a child seat nearly impossible to screw up. I have them in my VUE and love them. I really wish my Explorer had them.

It will need to be 2003 and up, LATCH was mandatory after sept 2002, so 2002 explorers didn't get it
 






A Wise Guy

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My biggest concern with a seat back there is the seats don't "lock" down and have about 4-5 inches of movement and I don't see how that will be a solid base.

The seatbelt is holding the seat in place against the seat. The seatbelt will keep the baby seat from moving forward.
 






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