Best Infant Car Seat Reviews

Best Infant Car Seat Reviews

The choice of the car travel system for children, be it a car seat or booster depending on the child’s weight and age, is one of the most important purchases parents can make to offer a warm and safe welcome to the new member of the family. If you don’t feel like reading our entire guide, check the best infant car seats available on the market in the table below.

In terms of security, there is no safer way for a child to ride in a car other than in his own car seat. Apart from being a legal requirement, a car seat can protect your baby in case of a car crash way better than a safety belt.

In fact, a child is more likely to get injured in the event of an accident compared to an adult because of its tiny dimensions. For this precise reason, a safety belt cannot keep the baby securely in place, while the delicate body structure of the little ones is more exposed to injuries.

With this in mind, it is easy to understand why choosing a high-quality car seat, especially for an infant, is crucial. To help you find the best on the market, we put together this top of the best infant car seat reviews.

How To Choose An Infant Car Seat

If you want to make a conscious purchase, the golden rule to follow is to comply with the federal regulations and safety standards, therefore you should pick an homologated car seat that has a solid and durable structure and at least minimal safety features.

Apart from the safety considerations, you should also consider the rapid growing rhythm of the babies. In fact, a car seat designed specifically for infants will only serve you for a short period of time. For this reason, you might want to consider alternative options, such as the convertible car seats.

These car seats feature removable accessories designed to keep the newborn in place and they can be easily removed to accommodate the baby as she grows. Some models even convert into a booster and they can be used from birth until the child outgrows the child seat age.

Another alternative option to consider is investing in a 3-in-1 travel system that consists of the pram, stroller, and car seat. Although you will not use the pram for a long period of time, the car seat and the stroller will serve your baby for quite some time.

In addition to all these considerations, keep in mind that the car seat you choose should be specifically designed for the 0 and 1 category. All travel systems and convertible car seats are designed to accommodate 0 group children.

Avoid buying a car seat that is not specifically built for the group 0. Although babies grow fast, the car seats in the category 1 and above are simply unsafe for a newborn.

Where And How To Place A Car Seat?

Speaking of safety, it is also worth mentioning that the place and position of an infant car seat should be chosen carefully.

Guidelines and regulations vary from state to state but good practice suggests to avoid positioning the car seat forward-facing until the baby is at least 15 months old. Some states even impose as a compulsory rule the rear-facing positioning of the seat until the child is old enough to use a booster.

Positioning an infant car seat in a rear-facing position is compulsory because in this position the seat will be able to absorb most of the energy of an impact and the baby will suffer fewer injuries.

A rear-facing car seat reduces the risk of death or injury in case of an accident by 90% as it provides a better support and absorbs the impact energy.

Regarding the position in the car, an infant car seat shouldn’t be installed on the front seat if the passenger airbag is not deactivated. Some rules even suggest that it is advisable to completely avoid positioning the car seat on the front passenger seat at all if the seat is provided with airbags, even if they have been deactivated.

Apart from these considerations, the best place where to install the infant car seat is on the rear bench, precisely at the center, as this is the most protected place in the event of a frontal or lateral collision. If you have a small car and have no other option than installing the car seat next to the door, remember to deactivate any airbags if present.

Why Install An Infant Car Seat Rear-Facing?

As already mentioned, the rear-facing position is the safest, but there are other reasons why you should position the infant car seat in this way.

The main reason, apart from the safety considerations, is that a rear-facing car seat can maintain the infant in a laid back position, offering support for the spine and neck of the little one. Since infants are unable to keep their head up, providing constant support is essential for an optimal development.

Regardless of the position of the car seat, a thing to pay attention to is to secure the harness system tightly enough to keep the baby in place at all times. The vast majority of the car seats come with a 5-point harness system that will allow you to adjust the straps to fit your baby.

Remember that clothes, especially the loose ones, can represent a further hazard as the baby can slip off. For this reason, it is advisable to dress the baby in thin layers of clothes before securing her in the car seat.

With these considerations in mind, let’s see which are the best infant car seats available on the market.

Best Infant Car Seat Reviews

1. Baby Jogger City Go Infant Car Seat

Baby Jogger is a popular manufacturer of strollers, car seats, and baby travel systems, its products impressing with their reliability and durability.

From Baby Jogger’s range of car seats, one that stands out is the Baby Jogger City Go, a rear-facing car seat suitable for infants weighing between 4 and 35 lb. Designed for active parents that switch cars or travel by taxi, this infant car seat offers safety features that make it unique on the market.

Baby Jogger 2016 City Go Infant Car Seat

The TaxiSafe feature, in fact, will allow you to install the seat in any car with extreme ease, without using a seat base and using exclusively the vehicle’s safety belt to secure the seat in place.

Apart from this, the City Go is also compatible with other Baby Jogger items, therefore it will be easy to create your own travel system by pairing the seat with the preferred stroller. The adapters for the strollers are sold separately, but the seat comes with an easy-install 6-position seat base.

Things We Liked

  • Easy to install: the City Go can be easily installed in any car, with or without a seat base. For the car you use the most, the seat base provides 6 recline positions and it is fairly easy to install. For the on the go parents, the seat can be easily secured in place with the help of the vehicle’s belt.
  • Soft fabric: the manufacturer proposes two color options, steel gray and black/gray. The interior of the seat is soft and padded, the fabric is stain resistant and fairly easy to clean.
  • UV50+ canopy: many parents are fond of the canopy that will certainly protect the baby’s skin thanks to the high UV protection factor.
  • Rounded base: the seat doubles as a rocking chair thanks to the rounded bottom. This feature is extremely useful especially when traveling.

Things We Didn't Like

  • The manufacturer positioned the warning labels on the pad around the baby’s head. Apart from being unaesthetic, they can also cause discomfort to the baby.

2. Evenflo Embrace LX Infant Car Seat

Evenflo Embrace LX Infant Car Seat

Designed specifically for the newborn, the Embrace LX infant car seat by Evenflo is suitable for children weighing between 4 and 35 lb.

This car seat is popular because of its exclusive, lightweight design that allows parents to carry the child without getting tired. In addition to this, the car seat comes with a base designed to be left in the car while the seat can be conveniently transported anywhere.

A great characteristic of this car seat is the adjustable handle with locker designed for both safeties of the child and comfort of the parents.

The handle has five positions, each of them designed for a specific purpose, front, carry, convenience, travel and stand.

The seat can be installed rear-facing only and the manufacturer went the extra mile and tested this product for structural integrity at levels two times higher than the standard federal crash test.

Things We Liked

  • Adjustable harness: the harness has a 3-point adjustable position designed to accommodate the infant as he grows. Apart from that, an upfront harness provides easy access.
  • Car seat base: the stay-in-car base allows an easy transfer of the carrier from car to home and allows the carrier to be used as rocking chair when it stands.
  • Washable pad: the head pad and the seat pad are both removable and washable.
  • Multiple colors: designed for both boys and girls, the car seat can be purchased and different colors, a unisex version, a girl version and a version dedicated to the boys.

Things We Didn't Like

  • Apparently, the canopy is quite small and it doesn’t provide sufficient shade in all circumstances.

3. Graco SnugRide Click Connect 35 Infant Car Seat

Graco is another popular manufacturer of baby travel solutions and one of its most popular products designed for newborn and infants of maximum 35 lb. is the SnugRide 35 rear-facing car seat.

The unique characteristic of this infant car seat is the Click Connect technology that provides a one-step attachment of the seat with the seat base and also with the other Graco Click Connect items that include a wide variety of strollers.

Graco SnugRide Click Connect 35 Infant Car Seat

Although this is not the only car seat that can be paired with a stroller to form a travel system, this certainly is a car seat that doesn’t need other accessories for this purpose, feature that will save you money and time.

Furthermore, the seat is designed to be easy to install and it is equipped with the convenient LATCH system.

Things We Liked

  • Level indicator: Graco designs all its products with the safety of the little ones in mind. This car seat comes with a level indicator that will help you check if the seat was installed correctly or not.
  • Click Connect: apart from giving you the possibility to form a travel system, this technology will also help you determine if the carrier is attached correctly.
  • Removable head support: designed for the comfort of the babies, this car seat comes with a removable head support.
  • 5 different colors: you can match the color of the seat with the gender of your baby or with your personal preferences thanks to the multiple choices available.

Things We Didn't Like

  • This infant car seat boasts an impressive quality, but it seems that the manufacturer didn’t care much about the design of the canopy. In fact, the canopy is small, hard to maneuver and it seems of poor quality.

4. Baby Trend Flex-Lock Infant Car Seat

Baby Trend Flex-Loc Infant Car Seat

If you have a small car, a great car seat to consider for an infant weighing between 5 and 30 lb. is the Flex-Lock by Baby Trend. This car seat is compact and ideal for small cars, yet it is spacious enough to accommodate newborn and infants in their first months of life.

The car seat is designed for safety and easy installation, featuring a 5-point harness, EPS energy-absorbing foam, and superior side impact head protection. Regarding the installation, the Flex-Lock LATCH system will allow you to carry your baby in and out of the car with ease.

Things We Liked

  • 4 recline positions: keeping your baby in a comfortable position will be easy thanks to the base that boasts 4 recline positions.
  • Smooth carry handle: the ergonomic handle is smooth and designed to provide maximum comfort to the parents.
  • Flex-Lock System: this LATCH system will allow you to remove the carrier from the base and to attach it again with extreme ease.
  • Quality materials: the padded fabric is of high quality and it is stain resistant, therefore cleaning it is relatively easy.

Things We Didn't Like

  • Although the seat is easy to use once everything is in place, installing the base is tricky and requires patience and dexterity.

5. Evenflo LiteMax 35 Infant Car Seat

The last infant car seat we review is the LiteMax 35 by Evenflo, a versatile rear-facing car seat designed to accommodate newborn and babies between 4 and 35 lb. This car seat is lightweight and easy to carry, while its uniquely crafted ergonomic handle makes carrying the baby as comfortable as possible.

Apart from this, the LiteMax 35 is easy to install and comes with a base equipped with a two-step lock-off designed for a secure and fast installation.

Evenflo LiteMax 35 Infant Car Seat

Regarding the comfort for your baby, the car seat is equipped with removable padded cushions for head and body and it features 4 recline positions.

Things We Liked

  • Secure: the manufacturer tested this infant car seat for structural integrity at levels that exceed the standard federal regulations.
  • Buckle pockets: thanks to this convenient feature, you will be able to keep your baby even safer, as the harness buckles will be conveniently hidden away.
  • Easy to clean: the pads are removable and machine washable.
  • Full coverage canopy: a canopy will help you protect your baby from sunlight or cover him when he’s asleep.

Things We Didn't Like

  • We would have loved this car seat if it would have been compatible with a stroller. Nevertheless, this is a great car seat to invest in.

Final Pick

By far, the best infant car seat available on the market is the Baby Jogger City Go Infant Car Seat. Apart from being one of the most versatile car seats, it is also compatible with a variety of strollers, allowing parents to create a customized travel system.

Is this car seat perfect? No, but its flaws can be easily forgotten thanks to its amazing feature. The manufacturer could remove the labels from the head pad, but if this is not a major downside for you, this infant car seat certainly deserves some attention.

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