*Please note that we are not safety professionals. We follow the recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), car manufacturers, and car seat manufacturers for correct installation and car seat safety.
As a household of two working parents, weekend time is precious to both of us in many ways. Between my husband’s work schedule and my weekend time devoted to this blog, we’re always trying to find a balance that helps us be at our best for our kids. These days, we try to spend solo time both out of necessity, as well as, quality time for each of us to enjoy one on one time.
My husband is all about being on daddy duty on the weekends. He loves riding around town with the boys in his ultimate dad mobile. From running errands to taking them to the playground to burn off energy, he loves his days out with all three kids.
As the resident car seat installer in our household, my husband is pretty well versed when it comes to car seat safety for our kids. When CYBEX sent us the new CYBEX Sirona M with SensorSafe 2.0, no one was more excited to check out the new features. He spearheaded the car seat installation in his dad mobile for Baby B! Here’s his take on daddy duty and car seat safety tips from a dad of three:
It’s definitely not easy, but getting out with my sons is something I try to do on a regular basis. The fresh air is good for all of us and it makes me feel good to know that my wife is getting her alone time, since she spends much (all) of her time taking care of us. My number one tip for dads (of multiple children) to get out with their kids is to just go for it. It’s not as hard as I anticipated and for the most part, the boys go easy on me when I am with them alone.
As my wife mentioned, I am the car seat installer in our house. Here are my tips for car seat safety:
Rear Facing vs Forward Facing
Baby B is now ten months old, so he is rear facing in his new car seat. We follow the AAP’s recommendation for rear facing and plan on keeping him in this position until he is at least two years old and preferably up to when he turns 4 years old or when he is 40 lbs. Rear facing installation in the CYBEX Sirona M with SensorSafe 2.0 is for children 5-40 lbs and significantly reduces the risk of injury in case of a head-on collision. In a head-on collision a rear-facing seat distributes the strong front-impact forces across the seat’s back, significantly reducing the strain on the child’s neck and head. Due to this, both B and C (2.5, 35 lbs.) are both rear facing in their car seats. A is 5.5 and nearly 50 lbs., so he sits forward facing in his convertible car seat.
The LATCH installation is my preferred method for car seat installation in my dad mobile. LATCH is an acronym for Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren and refers to a pair of fixed Lower Anchors (or bars) and a Top Tether anchor that are built into your vehicle. LATCH can provide an easier and more consistent installation.
- USING LATCH GUIDES for the CYBEX Sirona M
- Locate the lower LATCH anchors or the symbols indicating their location.
- If the lower LATCH anchors are hidden behind the crease between the seat back and seat cushion, install the supplied LATCH
Guides to the lower LATCH anchors for easier installation.
- To install, connect the two LATCH Guides to the two lower LATCH anchors by sliding the LATCH Guides into the crease and under the lower LATCH anchors.
There are many safety features that I look for such as side impact systems that provide an added layer of safety in the case of a side-impact collision. The CYBEX Sirona M with SensorSafe 2.0 features an adjustable Linear Side-impact Protection system (L.S.P.), increasing the level of safety in case of a side-impact collision. The L.S.P. system can be individually adjusted on the door facing side of the car seat and can absorb up to 25% more impact forces in a side-impact collision in combination with the head and shoulder protectors.
My favorite part about the CYBEX Sirona M is the SensorSafe 2.0 feature that monitors the well being of our son while my car is in motion. The car seat comes with a small vehicle receiver that I easily installed in my car’s OBD2 port. It is simple to download the app and make the connection to the receiver. The SensorSafe 2.0 sends an essential alert that will that promptly sends an essential alert to the vehicle receiver and my cell phone for any accidental reasons such as if our son is left behind in the car, if he tries to unbuckle himself while my car is in motion or if the back seat is too warm/cold or if he’s been seated for too long. This is all monitored through a user-friendly app that is easy to use and also provides information on installation, how-to videos, FAQs and more.
Adjustable Features & Ease of Use
When it comes to other car seat features, things that I look out for are related to the comfort for my boys and ease of use for me. This car seat has a 12 position height adjustable headrest and a one-hand adjustable recline. The CYBEX Sirona M with SensorSafe 2.0 provides an added layer to my peace of mind that B is safe and comfortable in his car seat.
I also appreciate features that make my usage and handling of the car seat easier. With this car seat, I can easily use the one-hand adjustable recline to properly fit the car seat in my vehicle. It also features a dual level indicator that provides easy confirmation that the car seat is installed correctly. The best added feature is the easy entry for me to place B in the car seat because of the magnetic belt holders.
While being a dad of three little boys is not a walk in the park, I love to embrace what my wife likes to call “our happy chaos”. I’m not successful every time, but I try to find ways to get things done while enjoying quality time with our boys. My wife agrees that daddy duty out of the house are especially nice, so that she can get time at home alone to catch up on work.