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Help with Houdini- Son escapes from car seat

Posted by on Aug. 3, 2013 at 8:43 PM
  • 12 Replies

Does anyone have any suggestions - my son continues to be able to get out of his car seat. He is 3yrs old, hi functioning autistic. He is in a 5 point harness now. We have tried the following which were unsuccessful:

houdini stop

Bee safe guard

booster seat with shoulder harness

explanation of danger 

please help if you have tried anything that worked. We are so worried about his safety. Thanks.

by on Aug. 3, 2013 at 8:43 PM
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by on Aug. 4, 2013 at 2:38 AM
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We had the same problem with our 4 year old until recently. We bought him an Evenflo Securekid 400, at the suggestion of a car seat safety tech. The chest clip is notoriously difficult for little ones to undo, and there is a company who makes a cover for the clip, in case he ever figures it out. 
This is the seat-

and this is the clip cover-

we haven't had to buy the clip cover yet, he hasn't really tried to get out of the seat. He loves to sit and strum the elastic inside the cupholder like a tiny guitar! bonus! (it's meant for holding smaller cups in place)

Another option is the EZ-On Max vest... you would need to have it professionally installed, the places that do wheelchair ramps and stuff like that install them, and it can be quite expensive, but I've heard insurance covers it most of the time. It's a harness that you use in place of a car seat (JUST as safe/effective) You put the vest on the child, and clip the vest to the straps you have installed in your vehicle. Here's a link-

Hang in there! I know how nervewracking it is to be driving down the freeway, and have a little houdini decide to break free! I hope this helps you :)

by Kari on Aug. 4, 2013 at 7:19 AM
1 mom liked this

Well you don't have to worry about his IQ, that is for sure! Those seats are hard to get out of. I don't have any advice as my son liked the security of his seat but I would like to welcome you to the group and hope you find the support and feeling of community that I have. WELCOME~!

by Platinum Member on Aug. 4, 2013 at 7:27 AM

Sorry momma I know this can be a scary situation. I don't have much to say as my ds does not do this. I hope you find something soon though. Welcome to the group 

by Bronze Member on Aug. 4, 2013 at 7:42 AM

Sorry, no answer, but her is a bump for you.

by Darby on Aug. 4, 2013 at 7:54 AM

The first response has some great ideas!  Good luck!

by on Aug. 4, 2013 at 9:21 AM

Thank you so much for taking the time to post your response. These are very helpful suggestions, and my next step after posting this is to start reviewing the options via the links you sent. Thanks again! :)

by Bronze Member on Aug. 4, 2013 at 9:55 AM
A frontier 85 is also more difficult to get out of. Ds kept escaping his grace nautilus (at age 2-3) so I got the frontier And age 5 hes just now figuring out how to escape.
by Jen on Aug. 4, 2013 at 10:23 AM
1 mom liked this
I am a child passenger safety technician and wanted to tell you that using other products to replace or alter the chest clip is not safe or recommended.

The first question I have is if the harness is tight enough. Generally, if it it's tight, they can't open it.

If that isn't the problem, I recommend calling the company to let them know. They need to know that is happening with their seat.

It basically comes down to a discipline issue. You need to let him know that you will not tolerate it. I would start to set up fake trips to a place he loves. Tell him you are going there and remind him to leave his seat alone. The second he messes with it, stop the car. Fix it. And tell him you're going home. No more special trip (for ice cream, or what ever).

He is definitely too young for a booster so please don't do that. Kids need to be 4 and 40 lbs at least but more important, they need to be mature enough to sit still and leave their belts alone.

Another idea we use as a last resort is putting sticky back Velcro on the chest clip. A lot of kids don't like to touch it so they leave it alone.
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by Gold Member on Aug. 4, 2013 at 11:04 AM

Purchase a seatbelt lock you can buy at  It worked for my son.

by on Aug. 5, 2013 at 6:33 AM

 This made me laugh because it's EXACTLY what I called our daughter then...she's 16 now. She's NOT autistic btw!

We literally had to stop the car several times if we took long trips...she could escape before we got of the driveway!

She finally stopped but I never had a real solution.

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