Harness Buckle Tips

As parents ourselves, Graco takes great pride in the quality and safety of our products, and always strives to provide products that meet the needs of our consumers. And, we take customer feedback very seriously.

For our consumers who are experiencing difficulty unbuckling the harness buckles, we have provided tips to help make it easier, which are to:

  1. Lift the lever and pull the shoulder harness straps (refer to Image G to the right)
  2. Tilt the top of the buckle toward the child’s abdomen (refer to Image H to the right)
  3. Press in at the top of the red button (refer to Image I to the right)
  4. Pull tongues out of the buckle (refer to Image J to the right)

Also, we have found that sometimes the buckles don’t function as expected because they need to be cleaned.  To clean your buckle, turn the restraint over and push the retainer through the harness strap slot.  Place the buckle in a cup of warm water and gently agitate the buckle, pressing the red button several times while it is in the water.  Do not submerge the harness webbing and do not use soaps or lubricants, only rinse the harness buckle with warm water. Shake out the excess water and allow the harness buckle to air dry. Reattach the harness buckle into the same slot and re-check harness for correct installation according to the car seat manual before use.

In our effort to continue evaluating the need for further improvements, we want to encourage you to provide feedback on these tips and let us know if they are helpful.  Please comment below or send us an email at blog@gracobaby.com.

Ashley Mowrey

Ashley is the PR and Consumer Engagement Manager at Graco. She loves catching up with friends on Facebook, relaxing at the beach and playing baseball with her three boys, Evan, Chase & Connor.

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13 Responses to “Harness Buckle Tips”

  1. Trina February 25, 2013 at 4:13 pm #

    I have the Graco 40 and just started using it (maybe 6 times total now). Since the start that red part of the harness has been ridiculously difficult to unlock. There were two times already that I didn’t think I was going to be able to get her out. I thought it was just me and my bad hands, but my family is having difficulty with it too!

  2. Candy February 25, 2013 at 4:27 pm #

    I have a Nautilus bought on 9\5\12 and it is just absolutly hard to get my 2 year old out. The new buckle style is terrible. I have 2 myride 65 and the buckles are easy to use. We have only used the Nautilus a few times because its so hard to use that its a pain. I can only hope Graco comes up with a solution to this problem quickly. My buckle is not dirty and has been hard to use since new.

  3. Ramona Sabas February 25, 2013 at 4:57 pm #

    I have two my ride 65′s one with the older groved buckle and one with the new flat buckle. My older my ride is a dream just what I wanted in a seat no complaints; but the newer seat with the flat buckle is a nightmare and I regret the purchase. The seat has buckle issues it gets stuck I thought It was just me but my husband was once ready to cut the straps off after 10 minutes of trying to unbuckle. And this seat also has strapping issues you have to pull at different angels to adjust properly. Please Graco recall these buckles before a child loses there life in what parents trust will keep them safe in an accident.

  4. Andrea February 25, 2013 at 5:37 pm #

    I found that if I do not have a child in the seat it unbuckles FINE but once I put my daughter in the seat it is like her weight counters the buckle somehow…the last time she was in the seat I had to take the seat out of the car, remove the harness from the back of the seat and take her out, at 5 in the morning at the babysitter’s when it was 5 below zero out…GOOD TIMES…Graco Customer Service has been wonderful though and I am happy with our resolution, I just hope they recall the buckles and go back to the old style before something bad happens. Also, I see Other Seat makers are using these buckles I hope they catch on and stop before there are many more issues.

  5. Danielle Koch February 25, 2013 at 6:38 pm #

    I am just going to suggest that you actually SOLVE the problem by switching to a more user friendly buckle, People are deciding against buying your seats to to the difficult buckle, so switching to a better buckle, even if it means more expensive production cost, will likely be more profitable for you in the end.

  6. Tina C February 26, 2013 at 6:16 pm #

    I thought it was just me as well, until my husband pointed out he was struggling to get our daughter out of our Snugride 30. We now have to adjust the straps each time we buckle her in or take her out of the seat. Image G is a little disconcerting considering the straps are likely to graze/rope-burn an infant’s neck in the process, which is why my husband and I loosen each harness one at a time. It’s comforting to know concerns are being heard and addressed though.

  7. Sheila J March 14, 2013 at 6:00 am #

    I’m discusted that your “tips” are the solution. We deserve better than that! We currently have the old style and new style and have issues with BOTH buckles, EVERY time we get out of the car it consists of me tugging and pulling and sometimes, my kids having to “crawl out” and around the buckle.

    You know what my BIGGEST FEAR IS? What if we are in a car accident and I have to get my kids out of their seat (or them get themselves out) due to a fire, submurged in water, or any other DEADLY scenerio in order to SAVE THEIR LIVES and I am sitting there struggling with their stupid buckles! It’s not just about the day to day struggles of getting our childeren in and out of the seats, this is about SAVING LIVES!!! PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE step up to the plate and DO WHAT IS RIGHT…. a recall or refund our money!!!

  8. Sheila J March 14, 2013 at 6:02 am #

    I’m disgusted that your “tips” are the solution. We deserve better than that! We currently have the old style and new style and have issues with BOTH buckles, EVERY time we get out of the car it consists of me tugging and pulling and sometimes, my kids having to “crawl out” and around the buckle.

    You know what my BIGGEST FEAR IS? What if we are in a car accident and I have to get my kids out of their seat (or them get themselves out) due to a fire, submerged in water, or any other DEADLY scenario in order to SAVE THEIR LIVES and I am sitting there struggling with their stupid buckles! It’s not just about the day to day struggles of getting our children in and out of the seats, this is about SAVING LIVES!!! PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE step up to the plate and DO WHAT IS RIGHT…. a recall or refund our money!!!

  9. Ken R March 29, 2013 at 3:41 pm #

    Ok – gave the cleaning method a try and it seems to have solved the problem. I do wish that the buckle was easier to open to begin with, as it does require more than a fair amount of effort to release it.

  10. Marla L June 10, 2013 at 2:19 am #

    Just wanted to say that I hope those “tips” work because I’ve owned a Graco Nautlius for about a week now and I’m having incredible difficulty with the buckles. I just finished spending 10 minutes trying to get a crying, freaked out toddler out of his car seat that “won’t let me go!” I can’t help but think about different emergency situations that require that I be able to get my kids out of the seat as quickly as possible, and how this car seat is not conducive to those situations. I’m definitely unimpressed after spending my money on this to have it be so ridiculously hard to use.

  11. Marcella July 16, 2013 at 11:04 am #

    Hi, I was actually very excited to buy one of your convertible car seats until I heard about this and have seen how much of a hassle this is and I’ve decided again buying the car seat I was so very excited about! I just do not think it is worth the risk that I may or may not be able to take both my little girls out of their car seats during an emergency. Maybe if you fix the buckle and go back to the old ones like the one that is in the snug ride my 3 yr old used (manufactured in 2010) as an infant I would be ecstatic to buy from your company again. But as of right now I am not willing to risk it!

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  1. Important Harness Buckle Safety Information | Graco Heart to Heart Blog - February 11, 2014

    [...] For more information and tips, visit: http://blog.gracobaby.com/2013/02/25/tips-opening-and-cleaning-your-harness-buckles/ [...]

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