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Can you put a carseat in a pickup truck? Are pickup trucks even capable of housing one in the backseat? Do you need special tools or attachments to install one?
Carseats are essential safety items in cars today. Although they don’t come standard with every purchase of a new car, mandates have been passed requiring children below 13 years old to sit in the back with a carseat appropriate for their height and weight.
Carseats are responsible for saving a lot of lives since they have been mandated as a must in all vehicles with children passengers. The added safety it affords has provided the sense of security parents all over the world whenever they have their precious children aboard.
But is this contraption just for cars or can it be installed in a pickup truck?
Here’s some good news: carseats fit in most cars. There are also special attachments that can retro-fit older cars if they aren’t readily accepting of this new addition to the driving experience.
Check the aptly named Safety 1st Jive 2-in1 Convertible Carseat if you’re looking for carseats you can place in your pickup truck for your precious child.
Types Of Carseats
There are different types of carseats because carseat manufacturers understand that children grow up rapidly. The different types of carseats are meant to accommodate the different ages, sizes, heights, and weights, ensuring safety every step of the way through the different stages of growth.
Here are the different types of carseats you can place in pickup trucks:
Infants And Toddlers
For infants and toddlers, rear-facing carseats are the best safety equipment in pickup trucks. In the event of a collision, the carseat will act as a safety cocoon even if it is pushed back by the front seat. The high back should act as a stop to prevent the child from being crushed into the rear seat.
Should there be any glass present, the rear of the carseat will receive the majority of the dangerous shards while keeping the occupant safe.
This type of carseat is appropriate for children 2 years and below.
3 Types Of Rear-Facing Seats
Nowadays, rear-facing seats are rare since manufacturers opt to cater to what parents demand. Rear-facing carseats only serve one purpose and young children quickly outgrow these. From a practical viewpoint, rear-facing only carseats aren’t a good investment in the long run.
Rear-facing seats usually come with a base that you can leave in the car. This will help you click the carseat into place conveniently. These carseats also have handles for easy carrying. Infants up to 35 pounds and not longer than 35 inches can easily use rear-facing only carseats.
Convertible carseats are the more practical safety equipment to get based on how you can “convert” it from rear-facing to forward-facing when the need arises. These carseats are also noticeably bigger so that they can accommodate bigger children.
These types of carseats don’t have the handles or bases rear-facing only carseats have. They do come with a 5-point harness for the shoulders, hips, and between the legs.
Perhaps the best investment you can make this early for your child as it can be used as a rear-facing, forward-facing, or booster carseat.
Toddlers And Preschoolers
For toddlers and preschoolers, forward-facing carseats are recommended. With longer legs and their curious nature, these children will enjoy the leg space afforded by these types of safety equipment. It will also them entertained by the sights outside the car window or any entertainment devices you have for rear passengers.
Forward-facing carseats can accommodate children weighing up to 65 pounds.
School-aged children who exceed the forward-facing carseats height and weight limits can use booster carseats in pickup trucks. This is typical for children who have reached a height of 4 feet 9 inches, weigh more than 65 pounds, or are 8 to 12 years of age. Children under 13 years of age are still not allowed to sit up front.
Children 13 years old and above are allowed to sit in the front seat, provided they are able to wear the seatbelts properly.
If they’re not tall enough to use the seatbelts, relegate them to the back seat. If they insist on seating up front with you, you could always let them use a backless booster seat to raise their height to the appropriate level.
Shopping For Carseats
OK, now on to shopping for carseats for your pickup truck and other vehicles you own.
Is there such a thing as the best or the safest carseat? Well, we have a list of the top-rated carseats you might want to check for your pickup truck. But, as for the best or the safest? Well, it all boils down to installing the proper seat for the child and how it fits securely to the attachment points.
And no, price isn’t a good indicator of what would determine a carseat to be the best or safest.
Instead, try looking at the production date of the carseat. Don’t get one that’s too old. There should be a label on the product that clearly states the model number and manufacturing date. It should also have a product manual or set of instructions that come along with it.
Definitely stay away from those that have manufacturing issues or obvious product defects, broken or missing parts, and are damaged (no matter how superficial the damage looks).
If you’re buying second-hand, make sure you know the item’s history. Why is the owner selling it? Is it a product that has been subject to a recall? Has it been involved in an accident?
Don’t buy carseats that have figured in a crash no matter how minor the collision may have been. The carseat should be in pristine condition and not have any visible cracks. The item should still be under warranty and the manufacturer should still be in business for customer-related issues/questions.
Last but not least, get one that’s age or size appropriate for your child. The design is the last thing you should consider.
List Of Carseats For Your Vehicle
Ok, so we promised you a list of carseats for your pickup. Here are the top-rated carseats available in the market today:
Other Things You’ll Need To Keep Them Kids Occupied
Kids strapped into a carseat are bound to get restless. Can you blame them? With nothing to look at but the back of your seat or whatever they can manage to see over the dashboard or windows, this is one of the best times to keep their brains engaged.
Supplying your kids with something to entertain them while you transport them from point A to point B is going to be one of your priorities.
Let Them Watch Educational Videos
One of the quickest ways to keep young children entertained is to play educational videos during the drive. This is also one of the most convenient ways to engage their minds as all you will need is a video player, a few movies or clips should be enough for a short ride.
You’ll need these essential items:
- iKross Universal Car Tablet Mount
- Fangor 10” Dual Car DVD Player Portable Headrest CD Players with 2 Mounting Brackets
- HD JUNTUNKOR Portable DVD Player with 10.1” HD Swivel Display Screen
Let Them Doodle
Everyone knows that children love doing activities that involve art. This lets them get creative while using their hands. And once they get some drawings going, you can rest assured that it’ll be a nice ride all the way.
So bring along some art supplies to make the ride more enjoyable.
Mind you, art materials can get messy. Make sure you have a protective layer on your seats to keep them in good condition after your tyke finishes his/her masterpiece.
Bring Toys For Girls And Boys
Kids love toys. ‘Nuff said. Bring toys.
Make sure you bring something as convenient as the Wikki Stix Traveler Playset to keep their toys in one place after the ride is over.
If they insist on bringing their favorite toys, make a deal with them to just bring one or two to keep the mess down to a minimum.
Keep Your Truck’s Rear Area Organized
Keeping the rear section of your pickup truck should be one of your biggest priorities. Teaching children how to keep their area clean as early as possible will help them develop good behaviors for the future. Tell them to put their things and toys away when they’re done instead of leaving them scattered all over the place.
Use these organizers to keep your pickup truck spic and span before, during, and after the ride.
Sing Some Songs Together
You could help them develop an early interest in developing their musical talents by singing songs together.
Keeping your child safe at all times is a full-time job. This is true inside your home and inside your car. The proper use of car safety devices and practicing defensive driving is one way to ensure each trip you take with your child starts and ends well.
There are different types of carseats and you should pick one that is appropriate for your child’s needs. Take into consideration their age, height, weight, and other needs.
And just to ensure that no member of the family gets left behind, we’ve also included a product you might like for your fur babies to ride along with your real babies. Here’s a mat to keep your rear seats free from fur and other damage pets might unknowingly commit: Dog Back Seat Hammock
Related Topic: Keep your cool and keep everyone safe. Don’t tailgate. Read more here: Why Do Pickup Truck Drivers Tailgate?
How Do I Enforce Wearing Seatbelts To My Children?
The easiest way to do it is to show them that you wear seatbelts before driving off. Young children learn best when they see adults doing things repeatedly. Being consistent in this manner will make them more conscious about emulating your actions when you get into your car. So, buckle up so they’ll wear their seatbelts before you drive off.
Are Carseats Required On Planes?
There are special provisions for children on planes. Ask the flight attendant to help you secure your child before take-off. They have the experience needed to do this safely without sacrificing your child’s safety. Make sure you observe how they do it so that you can do it yourself next time with little to no supervision.
What If My Child Carpools?
Carpooling is a common practice amongst parents. The question is: Can you ensure your child’s safety inside someone else’s vehicle? Well, you can discuss these matters with the parents you have carpooling arrangements with. Ask them if they can provide the necessary seats for everyone’s safety or let them use your own carseats. The most important thing is that children are seated properly and buckled in.