Last year I was sent the Britax Dualfix car seat by to review. We’ve been using it for the last 2 months now in the baby rear facing mode and this is how we’ve got on with it.
The Dualfix got delivered the week before Christmas when I was 36 weeks pregnant and I was very excited to receive it. Firstly this was a heavy package, the car seat weighs 14.7kg and is a solid and big piece of baby equipment. I asked my husband to help me unbox it and was very impressed with the design and the quality.
We’d been given a demonstration of how to fit this when we were looking for car seats in John Lewis and it seemed straightforward enough. Being the organised person my hubby is he actually fitted it the morning I went into hospital to have the baby! I’d advise making sure you practise fitting this well in advance of this deadline. It was so easy to fit, the isofix clips simply slotted into the car and the indicators on the side turned green to show it was in the correct place. The next step was to slide the bar down to the floor and again an indicator turned green to show it was installed correctly. This couldn’t have been any easier to install.
Positioning the car seat
Along the side of the Dualfix are markings to show that the car seat is reclined to the correct position. As we have a newborn we are using it rear-facing in the fully reclined position, it’s easy to see that this is correct as the arrow points to the marking. As Darcey grows up we can simply change the angle by holding down the 2 buttons on the base and changing the incline.
Inside the car seat is a height adjustable headrest, when using with a newborn you need to make sure this is pushed all the way down and then as the child grows you simply pull it up to ensure that the head is always being supported. We are also using the newborn insert in the car seat at the moment.
This is the number one selling point for me and the reason I so desperately wanted to try out the Dualfix. The car seat will rotate 360 degreess which makes it so much easier to get her in and out of the car. I simply have to press the large button at the front of the base and she swivels around to face the door. This makes a huge difference to anyone with back and mobility problems as you are taking the baby from your chest and putting it straight into the car seat in front of you. There is absolutely no strain on my back or bending involved at all. If the car seat didn’t rotate then I would need to lift the baby away from me and angle her to get her into the car seat, the heavier she gets the more pressure this would put on my back. Also having her face me when I put her in the car seat makes it a lot easier to ensure the straps are correctly done up and tightened when you have a tiny scrunched up newborn. Once she is safely strapped in I simply press the large button and swivel the car seat into the rear-facing position and it locks into place.
The Dualfix retails around the £300 mark which is more expensive than the standard baby bucket car seats, it is about £100 more, but then it does also work forward-facing up to the age of four meaning that you won’t have to pay for the next stage car seat .
Therefore buying the Dualfix from Birth can save you a bit of money in the long run. I’m happy to know that I won’t need to change the car seat until she’s 18kg or approximately 4 years old.
I absolutely love the Dualfix it looks and feels so much sturdier than the bucket car seats that I used for the boys.
I wouldn’t have been able to fit it in the car due to the weight of the unit but Hubby did this and said it was really simple, once it’s fitted it’s there to stay as well so I don’t have to worry about moving it. It can easily be removed from the car if needs be and transferred to another car with isofix mounts and is simpler than the car seats that need to be secured with a seatbelt. However due to the weight this will be permanently staying in my car.
The design is fantastic and the baby is so safe in this car seat. The rotation is the number one selling point for me and makes my life a lot easier. It’s stylish as well and the fabrics are all easy to clean if baby does have an accident.
It hasn’t made any difference to me that it can’t be removed from the car and attached to a pushchair. I made sure when buying my pushchair that it had a good pram unit for her and there has been a lot of advice lately telling parents not to leave their babies in car seats for long periods of time. I feel a lot happier removing her from the car seat and lying her flat in the pram when we go out. Luckily she’s not a baby that wakes up as soon as I remove her from the car seat and pop her in the pram.
It is more expensive than other bucket car seats and isofix bases however it will last from birth until 18kg or approximately 4 years of age. So you need to think about the cost of the next stage of car seat that you won’t need to purchase when you have the Dualfix.
I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this car seat to any prospective parents out there. If you have back, mobility or strength problems then this will make your life a whole lot easier. If you know you are having a c-section then you don’t have to worry about getting baby in and out of the car and putting undue pressure and stretching on your scar. I just wish that they had something like this years ago when I had the boys, it would have saved me a lot of money in chiropractor fees!
Britax have supplied me with this car seat to review however the content of the review and the opinions are all my own.