As your kids grow, so will the need to keep up with car seat safety. For instance, when you bring a newborn home, they need to be in a rear-facing car seat in the back seat until they turn two. After that, they can move into a forward-facing seat and a booster seat down the line. Since car seats are all based on weight and length, you should plot your child growth. Even if your child is two, they might be smaller or larger than the average toddler. You can to your child’s progress to make a smarter car seat selection.
All in one seats can be used as a rear-facing seat, a forward facing seat, and as a belt-positioning high-back booster with the harness removed. Sometimes, you will be able to find an all in one that also converts to a backless booster with weight limits up to 120 pounds. Occasionally, you’ll see one with a booster mode that uses a harness, but they are pretty rare.
Every time you put your infant in a car seat, you’ll be using a harness and chest clip. You’ll have to tighten the straps enough to secure the baby. Look for clips, buckles and straps that are simple to use and tighten. They should be intuitive enough to use without having to consult a manual. No-rethread harnesses are wonderful for adjusting the harness height as baby grows.
Finding a good fit for the Britax Frontier Clicktight Combination inside your car is fairly easy. Lower LATCH connectors are included, making it easy to secure this seat. The booster's Clicktight Installation System allows you to securely install the vehicle's belt in harness mode. Two buckle positions ensure a snug and secure fit for passengers of various sizes. Color-coded vehicle belt guides give a clear indication of how to use your vehicle's seat belt in both harness and booster modes. If you have any doubts about how well you've installed the seat, simply listen for the audible "click" that confirms correct LATCH installation.
Our comments: This unique “kid-positioner” fits kids bigger, older kids when traditional boosters don’t. Its short stature boosts those bigger kids up just enough for proper belt fit while its plain design makes it look more like a vehicle cushion than a booster. Shorter adults have even been known to use it to improve belt fit! See our preview and kid-written review of this terrific product.
In many states, it is required by law for children below 1 year of age to be in a rear-facing car seat. Further, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents keep their toddlers in rear-facing seats until at least 2 years of age. It’s safest for children to remain in that seating position until the rear-facing weight limit of your convertible car seat is reached, which can be anywhere from 2 to 5 years of age depending on your child’s growth and the seat you choose.
Familiar with the Back to Sleep campaign to eliminate sudden infant death syndrome or SIDS, one of the leading causes of infant death? Called Safe to Sleep today, it urges parents to put babies to sleep on their backs, never on the stomach, until age 1. Since the start of the campaign in 1994, SIDS rates have dropped by half, which is why it was chosen by the American Academy of Pediatrics as one of the most important achievements in children's health in the past 40 years.
Features: 5-40 lbs. rear-facing, 20-65 lbs. forward-facing; Advocate model has “MAX” side-impact protection features including external energy-absorbing cushions. These models have ClickTight installation system which also acts as a built-in lockoff device for the seatbelt; deep headwings with EPP foam and energy-absorbing headrest; no re-thread harness with 14 height positions; 2 buckle positions; non-twist harness straps; energy-absorbing HUGS harness pads; “rip stitch” energy management tether; anti-slip base with impact-absorbing technology and 7 recline positions; optional newborn insert and optional harness strap covers. Optional anti-rebound bar (sold separately).
Britax is known for top-of-the-line quality. Britax car seats may cost a bit more than some others. This is because every Britax car seat is manufactured to the highest quality standards and is designed to deliver superior safety and enhanced comfort. With careful attention paid to each detail from the shell to the stitching, you can count on a well-made product. That said, Britax offers an extensive range of car seats with an option for just about every budget.
Features: 5-45 lbs. rear-facing, 22-65 lbs. forward-facing; deep headwings for enhanced side-impact protection; 10 harness height positions; no re-thread harness; 2 buckle positions; tether can also be used rear-facing; EPS foam; thick no-twist harness straps; push-on LATCH connectors; premium fabrics. Kinetic version includes an anti-rebound bar and side impact Kinetic pods.
Forward-facing only seats can be broken into two groups: forward-facing harnessed seats and combination seats. Forward-facing harnessed seats are seats that can only be used with the 5-point harness in the forward-facing position and do not convert for any other mode of usage. Combination seats are much more common and can be used with the 5-point harnesses and then converted to a belt-positioning booster seat after the harness is outgrown.
Some models tout additional protective features; one of the more commonly advertised options is enhanced side impact protection. Keep in mind crash test data is not available, so you can’t see for yourself if an added feature really does make the seat safer in a crash. If you’re on a budget, you don’t need to go with an expensive top-end model to be confident your child is safe – the fitment of the seat and where it’s positioned in your car is far more important. On the other hand, if you can afford the fully-featured model and you trust claims made by the manufacturer, added safety features may offer more protection in certain types of crashes. Use your own judgment. 

Our comments: RodiFix is a unique, high-end booster with innovative features that make it easy to install and easy for kids to buckle themselves. Deep head and torso wings plus the Air Protect cushions offer enhanced protection in side-impact crashes and make the RodiFix comfortable and supportive for sleeping. The rigid lower LATCH connectors are a huge bonus and we like the fact that it only weighs 14 lbs. We recommend only for kids over 4 years old who weigh at least 40 lbs. and are mature enough to sit properly in a booster. The RodiFix has a Best Bet rating from IIHS. See our full review of the Maxi-Cosi RodiFix here.

You may have heard that babies can ride forward-facing at 1 year old or 20 pounds from many well-meaning sources. That's the old standard, though. All children are safer if they remain in a rear-facing car seat beyond their first birthday. Thanks to higher rear-facing weight limits on car seats, nearly all toddlers can remain rear-facing to age 2 and beyond.
One of the biggest advantages is the anti-rebound bar that offers more support and safety for your child. The lowest harness settings fit smaller babies, but the model also fits babies that tend to be longer and taller (up to 35 pounds) so you can keep them in a rear-facing seat longer. The different settings for height and width make this a perfect fit for almost everyone.
Differences between Foonf & Fllo: Foonf has rigid lower LATCH connectors for forward-facing; sits up higher when rear-facing due to its unique base; has rear-facing LATCH weight limit of 25 lbs. and requires using the anti-rebound bar. Fllo has flexible (typical) deluxe LATCH connectors for both rear-facing and forward-facing, a different base that sits a little bit lower; rear-facing LATCH weight limit of 35 lbs. and the anti-rebound bar is optional.
Our comments: The Scenera NEXT is a good budget-friendly seat for babies and small toddlers. Just don’t expect it to fit many kids over age 2 or 3. Also nice for traveling since it’s so lightweight. If installing with LATCH isn’t an option then you must read your vehicle owner’s manual to determine how your seatbelts lock in order to properly install this carseat with seatbelt.  See our full review of the Cosco Scenera NEXT.  Also check out our Comparison of Convertible Seats Under $100.

Features: 5-50 lbs. rear-facing; 22-65 lbs. forward-facing and at least 1 year old (2 years old is suggested); 10-position headrest with no-rethread harness; 2 buckle positions; innovative “true tension doors” for ease of installation with seatbelt (preferred installation method); 10-position base; energy-absorbing EPS foam & side impact protection (SIP) pods; smooth harness adjustment; extension panel that can be used rear-facing for increased legroom or forward-facing for additional thigh support.
Hello! While chances are, it could be fine, we don’t recommend using a second-hand seat from any source. There may be wear or damage that you can’t see, especially in the high-backed ones. There’s also a greater chance it’s been recalled or has expired. We recommend at least double-checking that the seat is not expired, that it’s not been in an accident or is not on a recall list before you use a second-hand seat.
The CYBEX Aton 2 Infant Car Seat has almost everything that you could want in a car seat. Parents have praised it, as have safety agencies.There are a few different things that you must consider when purchasing it - namely whether the safety features, bright colors and the sleek design outweigh the somewhat steep price tag. It comes in 8 colors and is designed for babies 4 - 35 pounds.
It’s here! The day you’ve all been waiting for – the day you get to meet your new baby face-to-face. Everyone is excited to hold her. You’ve got all her clothes washed and ready, her crib’s all set up. The changing table is fully stocked with diapers, sweet-smelling baby wipes and baby lotion. All that’s left is to install the car seat you got at your baby shower so you can bring baby home.
Our comments: It’s one of the tallest booster seats on the market! It’s also budget-friendly, well-padded and has enhanced side-impact protection. It fits kids of different ages and sizes well. We only wish it had lower LATCH anchor attachments but considering everything that you’re getting for the price (under $60), we really can’t complain. Spectrum has a Best Bet rating from the IIHS in both highback and backless mode. See our full Spectrum Review here.
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Jonas has spent more than half of his life surrounded by children's products. He published a series of baby books called Indestructibles that are designed to take everything a baby can dish out. More recently, Jonas has taken on a role as Marketing Director for ConsumerSafety.org, where he oversees safety campaigns to inform consumers about recalled products. As a father and safety expert, Jonas has a critical eye for analyzing products, and is well-versed in CPSC safety regulations for baby products. 

Differences between Pria 70 and Pria 85: Both seats are rated up to 40 lbs. and 40″ tall in the rear-facing position but the minimum weight limits are different. The Pria 70 model starts at 9 lbs. and the Pria 85 models start at 14 lbs. The 70 model is rated to 70 lbs. forward-facing and the 85 model is rated to 85 lbs. Both seats have Air Protect cushions on the headwings for enhanced SIP. The Pria 85 model offers harness holders (clips on the sides of the seat that can hold the harness out of the way while loading/unloading).
The CYBEX Aton 2 Infant Car Seat has almost everything that you could want in a car seat. Parents have praised it, as have safety agencies.There are a few different things that you must consider when purchasing it - namely whether the safety features, bright colors and the sleek design outweigh the somewhat steep price tag. It comes in 8 colors and is designed for babies 4 - 35 pounds. 
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