I hear a lot of people say that their kids would never stand for being rear faced that long, but in my opinion, carseat safety is not negotiable in our house. If you want to go somewhere, you buckle up in your appropriate seat. Even now, my children don't complain. I have two in high back boosters (ages almost 10 and almost 8) and two in harnessed seats (ages almost 6 and almost 4).
We have loved our Britax seats for extended rear facing. They are a bit more costly, but are so worth it in the long run. Our seats still look like they are in great condition and one is going to expire this year. We have a Roundabout and a Marathon for our younger two girls.
Check out this article on the AAP's new stance on extended rear facing.
Keep your toddler in a rear-facing car seat until age 2 (not 1)Lori O’Keefe
New research indicates that toddlers are more than five times safer riding rear-facing in a car safety seat up to their second birthday. Following are some safety tips for car seat use:
All infants should ride rear-facing in either an infant car seat or convertible seat.
If an infant car seat is used, the infant should be switched to a rear-facing convertible car seat once the maximum height (when the infant’s head is within 1 inch of the top of the seat) and weight (usually 22 pounds to 32 pounds) have been reached for that infant seat as suggested by the car seat manufacturer.
Toddlers should remain rear-facing in a convertible car seat until they have reached the maximum height and weight recommended for the model, or at least the age of 2.To see if your car seat is installed properly and to find a certified passenger safety technician in your area, visit www.seatcheck.org or www.nhtsa.dot.gov/cps/cpsfitting/index.cfm. You also can call 866-SEATCHECK (866-732-8243) or 888-327-4236.