Last Updated: May 19, 2017 / safest convertible car seat reviews
Best Convertible Car Seats
Over the first ten years of your child’s life you could end up purchasing three or four types of car seats. Wouldn’t it be amazing if you could start with one car seat and it would fit your child properly from birth through boostering?
A car seat has always been the number one item that parents buy before the birth of their babies. A convertible seat is one that can be installed rear-facing and be converted into front-facing.
We've tested dozens of car seats and found big differences between good and bad ones. A children’s car seat is one of the most important purchases you'll make to keep your baby safe, so it's crucial that you get the right one.
Keep reading for everything you need to know before shopping for a convertible car seat.
Choosing a good one can be slightly overwhelming because there are tons of car seats on the market! Therefore I've narrowed them down to 3 and only reviewed car seats from well-known brands that have provided the safest greatest car seats for many years.
Some parents just look at the price tag and have the inclination to buy the cheapest one. That's a bad investment and a recipe for disaster. I know many people with many children. I suggest spending a little more money on a car seat so that it will last through the years, and you won't have to keep buying a car seat every time you have a baby.
I send thanks to all the car seat experts, paediatricians, and parents who contributed to this handy information guide. In this guide you will learn the basics and be able to check out our award-winning convertible car seat picks. Read on to save time, money, and unnecessary stress!
What makes our guide different from other guides is that we continuously improve our knowledge, and provide the best possible choices available on the market. This page is up to date and I update it as things change.
WHAT IS A CONVERTIBLE CAR SEATS
Children’s car seats are split into groups from infant seats to toddler booster seats with each group designed to provide the right protection as your child grows.
They got their name because they start off rear-facing and convert to forward-facing. It's important to remember that the American Academy of Paediatrics recommends that all children rear-face until they're two years old.
The convertible car seat can be used from birth to about 60 or 70 pounds. One thing that's really important to remember is that car seats are made of plastic, and over time start to get brittle. Check with the manufacturer how long the car seat should be used.
Accidents can happen anytime. It doesn't matter where you are, while in the car with babies, you have to take all the precautions you can before anything happens. It's also crucial to correctly install it in a car. Always read the manufacturer's guidelines and follow governmental directives.
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CONVERTIBLE AND OTHER SEATS
Since the car seat is essential for your baby's safety, which type should you start with?
A convertible car seat is the next step after an infant car seat. Convertible car seats can be positioned either rear or forward-facing. They have a similar harness system to infant car seats with higher weight-height limits.
When your child meets the requirements for age, weight, and height, a convertible seat can be turned around and installed in a forward facing direction until a child is ready for a booster. We have selected the best car seats based on price, performance, quality and safety.
The main difference between infant and convertible car seats is that an infant car seat clicks into a base in your car. You can remove the car seat from the car with the baby in it, whereas a convertible car seat will stay in your car once you install it.
HOW WE TESTED AND RATED
All of the car seats we tested, and for sale in the United States, have passed federal safety standards for car seats. As a result, those car seats can be considered as providing an extra protection based on their crash test performance.
Why do we choose one convertible car seat over another? There are a number of reasons for this, which are discussed below.
Children's bodies are different from adults’ and far less force is needed to cause serious injury. That's why getting the right children’s car seat to fit their growing body as it changes is so important.
With their small size and undeveloped muscle and bone infants must have a special type of seat that faces the rear of a vehicle to help protect them in the event of a crash. For starters read the owner's manuals for both the vehicle and the safety seat to understand proper placement in the vehicle and proper placement of harnesses to hold the child in the safety seat according to the manufacturer's instructions.
Babies’ heads are about a third of their body weight and their neck muscles are weak. So if they're facing forward, there's risk of their head being pulled forward by the force of a crash causing severe neck and spine injuries.
Our tests have proven that a seat without side protection will leave your child's head, neck, and body at risk of hitting the side of the car causing serious injury in a crash.
This footage looks dramatic, but this rear-facing convertible car seat is performing exactly as it was designed to - to protect a child in a frontal crash. The impact on children’s heads in crashes is a major cause of injury and death, which is why we went beyond even the government's standards to develop new crash test methods for children’s seats, which incorporate a simulated front seat back to more accurately evaluate crash protection in a real crash.
Based on customer reports of recent car seat testing we are now urging parents to move older babies from their rear-facing infant carriers to a rear-facing convertible seat sooner rather than later.
This crash test shows you how dangerous it is to hold children or not restrain them properly. We tested infant and rear-facing convertible seats using a 22-pound dummy representing a one-year-old child. In more than half of the infant seats the dummy's head hit the back of the front seat.
That happened only once during testing of the convertible seats. Based on those results we a recommend that all children be moved to a rear-facing convertible seat by their first birthday even if they haven't yet outgrown their rear-facing infant seats. Although many children will have outgrown those seats by this time, a child is technically too tall for a rear-facing infant seat when s/he exceeds the tight limits or his/her head is less than one inch from the top of the carrier shell.
Along with crash performance ratings we evaluated each seat for ease of use and installation. Safest convertible car seats that rate well in our tests have features that help you install the seat correctly and make necessary adjustments as your child grows. You can learn more about how to purchase the right car seat for your child in our car seat buying guide.
Before your baby is born you'll need a rear-facing car seat. Remember that you won't be able to leave the hospital without one. This type of seat provides the best protection for babies and toddlers.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR WHEN BUYING
A buying guide featuring some of the best car seats for babies that meet federal safety standards to provide the best protection for your child.
All car seats have basic safety features that meet the minimum guidelines. When you start getting into premium convertible car seats, you'll see some revolutionary and innovative features. Some of them might feature steel bars or a complete steel frame.
Another thing to look for is a five-point harness. Almost all car seats feature the 5-point harness which ensures that your child has not moved in an accident.
A lot of convertible car seats have additional safety features, such as head support and other things. Make sure that your child will not be moving in an accident.
Another great safety feature on the convertible car seat is the tether. The tether is a strap at the back of a car seat which distributes any force from an accident from the car seat to the car. Not all car seats have a tether that can be used when the seat faces the rear.
The next topic is comfort. When you first start using the convertible car seat for a newborn, your child will be in the flattest lying position. As the child grows, s/he will move into a more upright position. It's a matter of our busy lifestyles, but we really spend a lot of time in the car.
So you want the car seat to be nice and comfortable for your child. Look for a nice plush padding, a comfortable material easy for you to clean in case an accident happens.
Let's talk about convenience. As your child grows you’ll have to reposition the harness correctly on your child's body. Some of the premium car seats allow pulling up on the harness to easily reposition it. That is much easier than having to read through the harness.
I highly recommend that feature in a convertible car seat. Another premium feature is the click and save technology which makes an audible click every time you readjust the harness.
If you're planning on traveling, you might think that you'll never take the convertible car seat with you. Convertible car seats are fabulous to have on an airplane. Check with a car seat manufacturer if they're FAA approved. We evaluated ease of use, safety and lifestyle factors to help us pick the best car seats for your little one.
Here are our award winning safest convertible car seat picks and what they provide.
|BEST CONVERTIBLE CAR SEATS IN 2017|
|Graco 4Ever All-In-One
Out of the 3 choices I'd recommend the Graco 4Ever when performance and reliability count. So I decided to give it a closer look. Here is our award-winning convertible car seat described.↓
CONVERTIBLE CAR SEAT REVIEWS
Here are my favorite features and all about the Graco Convertible Car Seat.
It takes your baby from newborn to 10 years of age.
This is a car seat that grows with your child and is good for up to 10 years with respect to the adjustments that you can make as your child grows. It goes from a car seat with a child insert for newborns to a backless booster for children up to a hundred and twenty pounds.
Very big on the safety features, especially the side impact, Graco All in One is a car seat that I feel very confident to put my child in and know that he will be safe.
Graco convertible car seat has an infant insert that is very easy to clean. it's removable, so you can slide it out once your baby is bigger. It has a couple of cup holders, which are great for smoothies that your baby loves.
Its very convenient handle allows you to adjust the height of the seat up and down very easily, of which which I like the convenience.
What makes Graco convertible car seat different from other car seats on the market? It’s the best all in one car seat that fits well and correctly at every stage.
Overall I really like the Graco 4Ever Convertible Car Seat. I love that it has a reinforced steel frame which has a 10 years’ life. The reclining options are amazing for ensuring a comfortable ride for the child and also perfect fit in various sizes of vehicles. And it's worth the price!
When you are buying a car seat, safety is the most important thing to take into consideration.This is a sturdy and easy car seat to use and a true life and money saver!
The 4Ever is FAA approved for airline use *with the harness*. It has a 10-year lifespan, and it must be replaced after any crash.
With comfort, meticulously tested safety features, ease of use and versatility, it is no wonder why the Graco 4Ever has been such a huge hit with parents.
Installs easily with LATCH or seat belt
It's a bit heavy
I like the Britax Marathon car seat, made in the USA, and it has a ClickTight system that allows for quicker and secure installation.
When you turn the little knob, the flap opens and you can put your seat belt right through it and secure it while it's closed. You can install it easily by using a seat belt.
The seat has a soft pliable memory foam. There is a cup holder that you can attach on either side. Kids love cup holders.
Wherever you read about car seats, Britax Marathon is one of the best rated for safety. This is exactly why I like this car seat. Another reason I love it is that it's really easy to install. Extremely convenient and highly recommended!
Got a small car?
The Britax Marathon is a car seat that can be installed in many small cars. Simply the best convertible car seat for small cars!
It has side impact protection. The quality of the fabric makes it easy to clean. It’s really great for positioning your infant to the right height and for comfort as your baby gets bigger. One of the great features of Britax is the integrated steal frame which will absorb a lot of impact during a collision.
Britax marathon is suitable for children from birth to 65 pounds. It will rear face up to 40 pounds and you can face it forward one year and 20 pounds.
Parents want the safest car seat possible for their children, and Britax is a name you can trust. Their award-winning safety and designs are something parents have counted on for years.
High rear facing height limits
Short crotch buckle
Diono Radian is one of the best and safest convertible car seats on the market!
The first thing I noticed about this seat is the quality. It is extremely durable and sturdy. It features a latch system, energy-absorbing foam, and a steel frame. It very easily folds for transport or storage.
The Diono Radian car seat grows with your child from infant to 120 pounds and is usable as a forward-facing booster seat. One of the best rear facing convertible car seat on the market.
It's very stylish and the material is machine washable if dirt does not come off by spot cleaning with soap and water. It cleans very easily and most of the material is stain resistant.
Another thing I like is that it has adjustable height and harness. Its removable seat pad is looks amazing. The Diono Radian is one of the best rated car seats on the market.
The Diono Radian convertible car seat is great for travel, FAA certified for air travel, and NCAP crash tested, which is a crash test that is about twice the strength of the standard crash test, so it is very durable and safe. It’s the best baby car seat. According to our experts this was voted as the best baby car seat in 2016 in the US.
It is excellent for toddlers and babies! It offers ease of use and comfort throughout the growth of your child.
So it's definitely a worthwhile investment that you will use for a very long time. The Diono Radian is a convertible car seat that will bring you peace of mind while you’re on the road.
Feels very solid & sturdy but is still comfy
It's a bit bulky
I was certified as a Child Passenger Safety Technician in 2015. I feel that it's my duty to warn people to read their car seat's manual and vehicle manual information about child safety seats cover to cover.
I recommend that you invest in the best option on the convertible market if you possibly can, because those extra additional safety features really can make a difference in an accident. Choose the best convertible seat for your baby with lots of safety features. Look for a convertible car seat with side impact protection.
You need to have a car seat from the day you take a newborn infant home from the hospital. A car seat is an essential part of car safety. Car seats save lives!
You will use this piece of baby gear for many years, so it's a decision you want to make carefully. Choose a sturdy one!
The Graco 4Ever has ticked off all the boxes for what matters to me in a car seat. I want one that allows extended rear facing, has a straightforward installation, is comfortable for my child to sit in for a while, and has excellent features easy to use. Graco has a well established reputation for being a leader in car seat safety.
If you're looking for a car seat that fits your child from birth, is easy to install, and is safe, then look no further than the Graco 4Ever Convertible Car Seat. Click here to check to latest price on Amazon.
The Ultimate Convertible Car Seat Comparison Guide