Happy New Year! Hope it’s off to a good start for all of you. Ours is great so far. I went for a long walk today with the baby and the dog (the Moby Wrap is amazing. 2.5 hrs walking, and I barely noticed I was carrying the baby at all). And I made another diaper from my recycled thrift store fleece shirt and Cat In The Hat pj’s. Feeling productive.
Yesterday I bought a used carseat for our son. I know, I know – that’s the one thing that you’re not ever supposed to buy used. Well, that and a crib (but we already got a used crib, so I figured I better go two for two and get the carseat too).
A few months ago, I orderd a Britax Marathon carseat online. It was $220, which was apparently quite a bargain – every other place I’ve seen them they tend to be at least $250. I love that carseat. It’s solid and secure – it feels like it’s part of the car. And it’s just buckled in with the seatbelt – our cars aren’t new enough to have the LATCH system. But Britax makes an awesome buckle-in system, and I love how safe the seat feels.
We’ve been using an infant seat that my best friend lent us (gasp – another used carseat) in our other car. Her baby is two now, and outgrew his carseat last year, just before our son was born. But now she’s pregnant with number two, and we’re going to give her seat back to her. Plus, our son weighs 19 pounds now, and the infant seats are only rated to 20 pounds. So we needed another carseat for our other car. It’s quite a process to get the seat secured into the car, so taking it out and switching it from one car to the other isn’t very practical (although I did actually consider that as an option).
I knew I wanted another Marathon. They’re rated to 65 pounds, so they’re really the only carseat you ever need. And I just like how safe they feel. I was willing to pay full price if necessary, but I decided to just take a quick gander at craigs list first. Sure enough, someone was selling a seat that was virtually identical to the one we have – for $75. I got the model number and checked the Britax website to make sure that it hadn’t been recalled. It looks like it’s never been used – the lady said it was the carseat in their second car that rarely got used. The house was in a very fancy part of town and worth about a million dollars. There was a brand new Audi in the garage and everything was shiney, new, and obviously well taken care of. They assured me that the seat had never been in an accident, and I believed them.
So there you have it. We got a super safe carseat for $75, and saved the world a bit by recycling rather than buying new. Each to their own, and I’m sure some people wouldn’t feel comfortable buying a carseat used. But it’s easy to check recalls online, and my mindset is to buy used whenever possible. I know that we could get a new carseat for not much more than $75, but I prefer a gently used but top-rated carseat for the same price. We rarely use my car anyway, but when we do, I’ll feel good knowing he’s in such a good carseat.
How about you? Have you ever gone against the prevailing wisdom and bought a carseat or a crib used?