Tuesday, July 17th, 2012
Just before a friend’s baby reaches a year old, I can count on her emailing me a “what convertible car seat should I buy?” question. It often comes with some panic attached, because usually the baby outgrew her infant seat more or less that morning!
With a car seat, you’re not buying for looks, you’re concerned about safety, easy of use, and value. You need to drop some serious dough, and you don’t want to have any regrets. I believe that all the car seats on the market that have the JPMA seal are well-built and tested. But this week, when a dad friend sent an SOS about needing a convertible car seat for his 11-month-old daughter, I had to mention that Britax has just launched updated versions of five of their convertible car seats, often considered the elite in the category. If you’re shopping for one of these latest-and-greatest, look for a Britax convertible seat with ”G3″ in the name. There’s new technology in the padding, including side-impact protection as well as updated padding in the harnesses. Integrated steel bars make the seats extra-sturdy, and a new tether works like anti-lock breaks so that the seat surges forward in stages if there’s a sudden accident, reducing crash forces. Also, the three most expensive versions (the Advocate, Pavilion, and Boulevard) offer simpler, easier-to-use buckles that can’t get twisted up.
The Advocate is the top-tier seat, at $380. And Britax is going to let us give one away! Here’s our request. We need you to fill out this survey about your driving habits. We’re partnering with Safe Kids Worldwide to help make the roads safer for all families. As part of that, we need moms to talk to us about the reality of driving with kids, especially those under age 2. For me, that included driving when I was bone-tired, steering while baby Grace was vomiting behind me and I could do nothing to soothe her because I was on the FDR highway circling Manhattan, and lots and lots of trips with the same freakin’ CD playing over and over and over again. (Good thing I like it: It’s Elizabeth Mitchell’s You Are My Sunshine and it’s engrained in my brain forever.)
Got similar tales? Unlike with most of our giveaways, leaving comments here won’t win you anything, though we do, of course, welcome your feedback! To win the new Advocate car seat, click here (or above!) and take our survey. It’s subject to the official rules here, and the survey is up from today through Thursday, August 2, 2012. Goody luck, and safe driving!