May 2013 Moms

seatbelt or latch installation?

We have the graco snugride 35 car seat and I drive a Honda Civic. Which is better/safer, the seatbelt or the latch installation method? Thanks in advance for any advice

Re: seatbelt or latch installation?

  • I think the latch is preferred if your car has them according to the britax bsafe instructions. DH installed with latch and ill say it is rock solid in there.

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  • If your car has the latch system that's what you should use, it's the safest way and get much tighter than the seatbelt.
    BabyFetus Ticker
  • In my car it is latch on the window seats and seatbelt in the middle. The fireman checked and it said so in the manual. He did not look like the guys on Chicago Fire but he did a bang up job installing DD's seat.


  • Thanks so much ladies!


  • kcwnckcwnc
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    It depends on the car and how many child seats you have in the back. The center seat is the safest in most cars if you only have one child seat. My car only has the latch options on the two window seats. We installed ours in the middle with the seatbelt per the manual and my ff hubby.
  • I think LATCH if safest if your car has it, though be sure to check the manual on which rear seats to use.

    There was a new article out lately that once your child and carseat reach a certain weight limit, I think it was 60lbs combined, that it is safer to then use the seatbelt.

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  • image HaleyEliza:
    We have the graco snugride 35 car seat and I drive a Honda Civic. Which is better/safer, the seatbelt or the latch installation method? Thanks in advance for any advice

    We have the same carseat and also drive a Honda civic! We actually went to our local police station to have the carseat installed, and the officer who did it said the latch was better for our car. However, it also depends on where you are putting the carseat. Are you planning to put it in the middle or behind the passenger seat?
  • My car doesn't have the latch so just installed it today with the seatbelt like the instruction Manuel and it doesn't move at all, I also have the same car seat, can't wait for her first ride in it home in Thursday!
  • We were just dealing with this last night, although I drive a Jeep. We only have LATCH on the window seats, if I want to use the middle seat it is seatbelt only, per the car manual. We tried installing in the middle with the seatbelt, but could not get a good fit. The base just seemed off, no matter what we did, and it kept coming loose when I would test it. We moved to LATCH on the window seat and it is rock solid, much more secure, so we chose to keep the seat there. I believe both my car manual and car seat instruction manual said to go with whatever installation method was the most secure.
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  • KLJ3KLJ3
    250 Answers 500 Love Its 1000 Comments Fourth Anniversary
    We have a Graco and a Honda Civic, and we have the LATCHs only for the window seats. Even though we read that the middle is technically safest, and that seatbelt installation is just as safe as the LATCH system, the carseat installation expert at our county public health office told us to use the LATCH system.
  • From what I've been told latch behind the passenger seat is the safest.
  • We took our seat to the fire department to have it installed and they used the latches. If you can get a car seat specialist to give you advice or do it for you, I highly recommend it. We live in a small city and they have free car seat clinics once per month free of charge where they make safety recommendations, show you how to use the seat and install it for you. Very worth the time and peace of mind!
    BabyFruit Ticker
  • Like the pp said we either could go with Latch behind the passenger or seatbelt in the middle. We went with the Latch because we ended up being able to tighten the seat down and it is not budging. With the seat eat it was still wiggling.
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  • We have the same car seat and also a civic.  We installed with the latch and then I also put the seat belt to give extra piece of mind.  I plan on installing a 2nd base in our PT Cruiser same way as well.  They both will be behind the passenger seat since we also have an 8 year old dd.   
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