If you’re traveling in a car of any sort with a baby on board, you need a car seat. You are mandated by law (in most areas) to have a car seat for your child from when they are a new-born until the age of 13. After that, they have become a necessary part of ensuring your baby’s safety while traveling.
In recent years, many people have chosen a pickup truck to be their mode of transport. I can’t blame them. Have you seen the capabilities of a midsize pickup truck? Those things are useful. Great for hauling cargo or equipment, they have shot up in popularity, becoming one the most popular vehicles sold.
Will a pickup truck be able to accommodate a car seat?
It’s easy to think that a truck can’t facilitate a car seat, given that one doesn’t usually associate pickup trucks with being child friendly. Most car seats are placed in the back seat of cars. Will a truck be able to do the same? Yes, it will.
Of course, whether you use a convertible car seat, what size car seat you use, and if you will have it rear facing all depend upon the amount of space in the cab of your pickup truck.
Car seats Galore: Types of Car seats according to Age
Your child is going to go through their fair share of car seat changes as they grow up. You can buy a convertible car seat that can be adjusted as your child grows up, or you purchase a new one or borrow from a friend. Whatever you choose to do, you should know about the many child seats available and which type to use for each age group.
Starting from oldest to youngest.
Children above Thirteen (13)
If you have a child older than thirteen (13) years old, they may have started asking to sit in the front seat next to you. They want to feel like a grown-up. If they are still a little too short, you should insist on them sitting in the back seat, but if you feel comfortable using a booster chair, it should not be a problem.
Just make sure they know how to operate their seat belt properly.
Under Thirteens (13)
Still too young to be upgraded to the front seat but definitely at the stage where they are beginning to outgrow their forward-facing car seat.
These are children that are at the age where they are going to school and have reached the set height and weight (four foot nine (4’9), thirty-onekilograms (31)/sixty-ninepounds (69) respectively) to be upgraded to a booster seat.
Car seats for your Toddlers and pre-schoolers
At this age, your little one is going to need to be entertained because they’ve reached their inquisitive stage. We would suggest forward facing car seats to keep them occupied. In addition, they are going to need some leg room to wiggle their legs around.
If you have a convertible car seat, it would be a good time to convert it into a forward-facing seat, your baby will appreciate the window view, plus you can keep a better eye on them should they start getting cranky.
Car seats for new-borns to toddlers
For this age group, it is best to opt for a rear facing car seat. Rear facing car seats are the best car seats to have in a pickup truck, especially for safety purposes. The back of the car seat provides the baby with head support so they can sleep in comfort. In addition, a car seat such as this has a low injury risk rate in the event of an impact.
Types of rear facing seats available
- The convertible car seat is equipped with a five-point harness system and easy to adjust between forward facings seats and rear facing.
- The all-in-one car seats.
- Rear facing car seats.
Installing your baby’s car seat
Installation methods will also differ from that of a standard car. However, it is important to note that if the truck’s cab can hold approximately 85% of the car seat’s weight, it’s fit for installation.
The difference in an installation depends upon the tether; this is simply how cars and trucks are designed. If your car seat is forward facing, you will have to check to see if your truck has a top tether.
Tethering and where to find the tether in your truck.
Any automobile, be it a car or pickup truck, will have a tether located in the backseat, especially if it was manufactured after 2001. If you are having difficulty locating it, you can consult your truck’s user manual.
Behind the seat
The tether anchor can be found behind the truck’s seat in the majority of trucks. However, in some cases, parents may be required to fold the seat down to locate it.
Without doing this, it will not be possible to fit the car seat correctly, putting your child’s safety at risk so, while it may make the entire process annoying and time-consuming, it needs to be done.
Car seats and Seat Loops (look behind your seats)
Not to be confused with the other form of loops, the webbed form. The installation of these is a little tricky, and it’s a good idea not to fiddle too much with things without at least taking a look at the user manual provided by the vehicle manufacturer.
The loop works much like webbing loops. You need to run the car seat tether through the loops and then attach it to the back of the seat next to it.
If you have these basic functions of the setting taken care of, the rest of the process works much like a standard car installation.
If you’re still struggling or are worried that you may not have installed the car seat correctly, you can contact your local child passenger safety technicians (CPST). They are there to assist parents are installing car seats properly.
Instead of tethers, there may be Webbing loops
Usually placed behind the seat’s headrest, webbing loops are used in place of tethers in certain cars and trucks. To install your baby’s car seat, pass the tethers into the loop, then attach the anchor to the middle seat’s headrest using the same webbing loops.
Fix the car seat into place using either a seat belt or latch mechanism. Once that is completed, you can adjust the amount of giving the loops have; you can loosen or tighten it according to your child’s needs.
The best car seat for a pickup truck
BRITAX ClickTight (Boulevard version) Convertible Car Seat
Super simple car installation for any parent, with an adjustable harness to keep you comfortable. Manufactured with a steel frame, side impact protection, and a base that can absorb impact in the event of a crash.
A car seat created with safety standards in mind while also being easy to use, and because it is a convertible car seat, you do not have to purchase a different car seat as your child grows older.
The Chicco KeyFit 30
Created with a latch system and five-point harness, this is one of the easiest car seats to install. Lined with energy absorbing foam so that the car seat remains in place.
It has an adjustable headrest that can be completely removed so you can use the same seat as your baby grows. It is also machine washable to maintain a neat and clean seat for your baby—an impressive care seat by any standard.
The Chambers Safety first guide 65 convertible car seat
An excellent convertible car seat for parents. It is a compact car seat that will fit well even in a small car or crew cab truck. It can be used as a rear facing seat or a front facing seat, depending on your needs.
Equipped with side impact protection and created with premium quality fabric. In addition, an impressive car seat that will fit into smaller rear rows and in larger vehicles provided other passengers with a roomy back seat.
Graco Nautilus 65 LX 3 in 1
One of the best car seats to use in an extended cab truck. Quick and easy installation, this is car seat meets international standards of safety. An incredibly safe convertible car seat with energy absorbing foam and a steel frame would keep your baby safe if your vehicle crashed.
It also provides side impact protection due to the use of side impact soft foam. In addition, the car seat has a unique latch installation that works with just one click to keep pace with your busy life as a parent.
It has a removable seat cover that is machine washable and harness straps that are super easy to clean; just use a damp cloth. Unfortunately, it does not work in the rear facing position as it is built with toddlers and older children in mind.
Almost forgot to mention, parents, this convertible car seat has a cup holder.
Diono 2019 Radian 3RXT
The all-in-one convertible car seat is going to accompany your child from a new-born baby well into their toddler years. One of the best convertible car seats you can find can fit into pickup trucks, a small car and can even be used for air travel.
Among some the convertible car seats that can be used in both the rear-facing and forward-facing modes. The convertible car seat hosts a log-lasting steel frame for your child’s maximum safety and security. Because it can be used in any seat position, you do not have to change the car seat as your child grows. It also boasts a harness point to keep your baby’s movements limited and to keep them safe in the event of an accident.
It is made to fit into a compact car space and is one of the best convertible car seats for parents with pickup trucks. Constructed with your baby’s safety in mind, it’s built with memory foam and quality fabric which, along with the car seat cover, is machine washable (lifesaver, honestly).
Supporting a latch system that will click to let you know once the seat properly fits into place. The maximum weight limit for which the car seat fits children rear facing is twenty (20) kilograms/ forty-five (45) pounds.
Britax ClickTight (Marathon Version)
Another notable addition to our list of the best convertible car seat for pickup trucks. Like many baby seats currently available, it can be used like forward facing seats or a rear face car seat for infants.
It can easily be put on any list for the best car seat, not only because it can be used from when your baby is an infant until they reach school going age but also because of its safety features that will ensure your child will remain safe, sitting in this seat even in the event of an accident.
Made to support everything from your baby’s shoulder to their heads with a padded harness and steel frame to keep them safe at all times. The chest clip and harness work to minimize their movements to protect them at all times.
You can Place Anywhere!
It can be placed anywhere from a small car to pickup trucks and front seats (just remember to disable the passenger airbag). However, unlike many car seats that can’t fit in a compact car with small seats, this is not the case for this car seat.
These are made to provide you and your child safety (like the side impact protection feature), comfort, and versatility, all packaged into a single product.
It is even mess-friendly with removable cover seats (machine washable, parents), which can be removed without uninstalling the entire seat; this is not a product that requires a lot of fuss to work.
These are just some of the many products available to parents looking for something to keep their child safe and comfortable during the many car rides they will be taking during their life.
Remember before purchasing any car seat to take your pickup truck’s space and specifications into consideration. Not every car seat will be able to fit into every pickup truck. So, before you go out and purchase something that is supposed to last you quite a several years, read the product reviews, your truck’s user manual, and whether or not the car seat you want will fit into the car you have.
There is also no harm in picking a seat that is not convertible and changing to another car seat once your child grows out of the first one.