Top Rated Infant Car Seats

infant in infant Britax car seatAn infant car seat is one of the most important purchases you will make!

We’ve put together some considerations and summarized reviews from five of the best-selling and best rated infant car seats below.

Infant car seats are designed for babies up to 30-35 lbs, before they switch to a convertible or toddler seat.

There are several different types of infant car seats out there and it can be really confusing to try to figure out what works best for both your family and your car.

One of the biggest things that we’ve found is that some of the top rated infant car seat models on the market are fairly HEAVY.

We just had our second child, and he is a big boy! He’s about 8 months old and I AM struggling to carry our Britax infant car seat around for longer than five minutes. Be sure that you’re able to lift and transport before you buy.

Another item to consider is whether or not the infant car seat has breathable material (especially since so many car seats come in black material!) and whether or not you can disengage it from the base quickly and easily.

Also be sure that you can easily wipe down the material, or remove it to throw it in the wash.

I’ve found that both of my children have spit up, thrown up, or gotten liquids and foods buried deep within their car seat.

One of the items that I found mentioned in several of these reviews is the size of the canopy included within the car seat. Several people complained in some of the models that it wasn’t big enough or felt flimsy.

Consider whether or not you’ll need the canopy as part of a travel system stroller (pairing the car seat with a stroller to take a walk), or if it’s long enough to cover your child when the sun may be in his or her eyes in the back seat.

Sun in their face can be a big annoyance, especially when the sun is at the right angle in the mornings or afternoons.

Regarding the straps, be sure to consider whether or not the straps adjust from the front or back. Adjusting the straps with an infant from the back can be very difficult.

Finally, make sure you have the straps tight enough when buckling in your infant. Never buckle up your infant with his or her jacket on – this can cause extra space between them and the strap, which can be dangerous in an accident.

You want to make sure that the chest plate is squarely on their chest (not falling down below) or too close to their neck.  Also be sure that you can’t get your fingers easily under the straps  – they should be snug enough so that your child is tightly strapped in, but comfortable and able to breath easily.

This guide from the Parents.com on how to safely buckle your infant is super helpful – be sure to check it out! 


HERE ARE SUMMARIZED REVIEWS FOR FIVE OF THE TOP RATED INFANT CAR SEATS BELOW:


Graco SnugRide Click Connect 35 Infant Car Seat

*Updated Sept 2016 from Graco Classic Connect

PROS review summary: 

  • Ultra lightweight infant seat at 7.5 lbs (without base)
  • Holds children up to 35 lbs and 32″
  • One step attachment to Graco Click Connect strollers
  • Five point harness that can be adjusted from the front

CONS review summary: 

  • Some reviewers note that the infant insert feels “flimsy” or “plasticky”
  • Reviewers note that you can’t carry the car seat while the canopy is down
  • Other reviewers note that they heard multiple delayed clicks with this system and trying to lock it down

 


Chicco Keyfit 30 Magic Infant Car Seat

PROS review summary: 

  • Rated #1 carseat in America by a leading consumer magazine.
  • 5 point harness & easy installation
  • Canopy has zip out, extendable mesh panel to help let air in
  • Easy one-hand removal from base (not all carseats have this)
  • Comes with infant inserts for babies 4-11 lbs

CONS review summary: 

  • One of the heaviest models on the market (weighs 10.1 lbs without the base)
  • Some consumers mention that it’s fairly heavy to carry

 

 


Britax B-Safe 35 Infant Car Seat

PROS review summary: 

  • Easy installation
  • 1-click in place lets you know the car seat is ready to go, easy to loosen harness
  • Designed to hold babies 4-35 lbs
  • Base and Side impact absorption and protection

CONS review summary: 

  • Heavier than standard car seats (weighs 11 lbs without the base)
  • Harder to carry when canopy is up
  • Not compatible with many strollers beyond Britax

 

 


Cybex Aton 2 Infant Car Seat

PROS review summary: 

  • One of the lightest top rated infant car seats on the market at 9 lbs
  • Easy to carry and transport
  • Integrated foldaway canopy offers SPF 50+ protection
  • 3 position handle

CONS review summary: 

  • Have to change handle angle with both hands
  • Some cite difficulty of tightening straps when car seat is on base

 

 


Safety 1st Onboard 35 Air Infant Car Seat

PROS review summary: 

  • Air Protect Technology for side impact protection
  • Infant car seat goes up to 35 lbs
  • Weighs 9.5 lbs without base
  • Machine-washable seat pad
  • Updated base offers five different angles to choose from

CONS review summary: 

  • Compatible only with Safety 1st strollers


Evenflo Embrace LX Infant Car Seat

Pros Review Summary:

  • One of the lower priced, best rated car seats on the market
  • Holds infants from 4-35 lbs
  • 25% lighter than other comparable infant car seats
  • Separate, stay-in-car base with pendulum for reading if correctly installed
  • 3 shoulder harness positions

Cons Review Summary: 

  • Some consumers note that the sun shade is smaller than expected
  • Some consumers note that the head support feels “flimsy”

 


Be sure to check out our top rated convertible car seats and booster car seats pages!