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The best car seat is the one that fits your child, vehicle, budget, and lifestyle and has the features important to you. Let us know in the comment section what questions you have about this review of the Graco 4Ever DLX Grad car seat. Safety experts generally agree that it is better to stay rear-facing longer, as is staying in a seat with a five-point harness for as long as possible before switching to a seat belt–dependent booster seat. Also, the Extend2Fit 3-in-1 has a shoulder-harness height that’s over an inch shorter than the Convertible’s. We would never want any caregiver to move their child into a booster seat prematurely.

Find car seats for your child by brand, or look up the details of a specific car seat model. However, it can be carried into the aircraft only when it is compact enough to fit into the overhead bin or under the seats in the airplane (4). “The 4Ever DLX Grad 5-in-1 Car Seat is the first product on the market with five true modes of use, offering the versatility, customizability and longevity needed for first-time parents and growing families alike.”

Some infant seats—including three of our picks in this guide—come with an anti-rebound base or a load leg, added safety features that can improve the seat’s performance and stability in a crash. The tether is located on the top rear of convertible, combination, and all-in-one car seats. It’s adjustable and has a hook and strap that connects to one of your vehicle’s tether anchors. Most rear-facing car seats in the United States do not use a tether for installation. However, installations vary from model to model, so you must review your particular car seat’s instructions and your vehicle’s owner manual carefully. If you travel with your children often, you should consider choosing from our list of the best graco car seats to ensure optimal security.

We’ve installed the 4Ever in a number of vehicles over the years and discovered that this recline position can be a bit tricky because 80% of the 4Ever’s base must be on the vehicle seat. In addition, the entire base must be flat on the vehicle seat but there can be a gap between the back of the 4Ever and the back of the vehicle seat as long as the car seat is installed correctly with less than one inch of movement at the belt path. This seat works for babies ranging from 4 pounds up to 30 pounds or 30 inches; like our other picks, it can accommodate most preemies who are able to travel in a car seat.

graco car seat

If you choose to use a seat belt to install your car seat, pay close attention to how to  “lock” your seat belt according to the vehicle’s owner manual. Before installing your car seat make sure you understand the function and location of the vehicle and car seat parts that are used in installation. In addition to its generous 50-pound rear-facing weight limit (with a seat belt install), the Extend2Fit 3-in-1 facilitates extended rear-facing riding with the same unique design feature as the Convertible has.

If you’re planning to use the SnugRide SnugFit 35 DLX mostly with its base, this shouldn’t be a big deal. We also caution car seat shoppers against getting talked into infant seat and stroller “systems” where compatibility is the main selling point, since the payoff is bound to be short-lived. The time period in which most families actually use an infant seat and a stroller together is relatively brief—usually graco turbobooster around a year or so—whereas a stroller is likely to be around a lot longer. So we believe it makes sense to choose the best infant seat and the best stroller individually, each on its own merits, rather than settling for a subpar version of either. Adjusting the Extend2Fit harness height is better than most with non-rethread adjustment on ten levels with two different buckle strap possibilities.

The Boulevard can be used in the rear-facing position for kids up to 40 pounds (the size of a typical 4-year-old, and an average rear-facing weight limit for a convertible car seat). But we think it could be difficult, in practice, to actually keep a kid rear-facing in the Boulevard for that long. Unlike with our other convertible picks, with the Boulevard the design of the seat itself doesn’t really accommodate larger kids in the rear-facing position. Our top pick, the Graco Extend2Fit Convertible, has a pull-out extension panel to create extra legroom.

When you press down on the key and turn it clockwise, the bottom of the seat lifts up, opening to reveal the guts of the operation. You then weave both the lap and shoulder portion of the vehicle seat belt through the appropriate slots—they’re labeled for either the rear- or forward-facing position, depending on which you’re using. Finally, you push the seat bottom closed; you’ll know the lid is secure when you hear a satisfying click. Before selecting a model best suited for your needs, make sure to acknowledge the safety features and measurements to find the right fit for your family. For the car seat to properly install, measure the back seat of the car you will be using to determine how much room is available.

It has one of the best crash test analysis results in the group, is easy enough to install, and offers many comfort features. With features like dual cup holders and a padded headrest, this seat is sure to please. It’s made for older kids who still need a booster, but it looks more grown-up. It has a 50-pound minimum, so it’s definitely geared towards older kids, and the 60″ height maximum is the highest that Graco has ever had. We love to see this as, in reality, we have found that only around 50% of kids pass the 5-Step Test at 57″.