There two types of baby capsules/baby car seats widely available in the market today: infant car seats and convertible car seats. Both type of baby car seat offer safety and convenience, but what’s the real deal between the two? Do you know the difference between infant car seats and convertible car seats? Do you know which one you need to buy out of the two? Or should you buy both? Below we have provided all the information you require in making your decision, but first, let’s present the list of the best 3-in-1 car and 4-in-1 car seats available in 2016.
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Car Seat Guide
Best Car Seats in 2016
One of the top rated Graco car seats (available here) and most favored by the consumer magazines and publications as the ‘best car seat in 2015-2016’ is this forward facing car seat, the Graco Nautilus 3-in-1 car seat.
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It will be the last car seat you will ever need to buy; it’s suitable for your child up to 10 years old
Why is it the best baby car seat?
♥ It has a 5-point harness; The Graco convertible car seat holds a child between 20-65 pounds, then converts into a belt-positioning booster for a toddler between 30-100 pounds, then converts into a backless booster for a child between 40-100 pounds.
♥ This Graco Nautilus 3 in 1 is one of the safest car seats as it has been rigorously crash tested and side impact tested.
The Graco Nautilus car seat has met (or even exceeded) the standards set forth by the U.S. Safety Standards. With its steel-reinforced frame, the strength and durability of this Graco convertible car seat is not a question.
Its 5 point harness system works relatively easy with its energy absorbing foam, ensuring the safety, protection, and comfort of your child.
Out of all the convertible car seat reviews and purchases worldwide, this Graco 3 in 1 car seat has topped the list in 2016 as the best selling in c. You can read more the Graco nautilus baby car seat reviews here as to why it is the best convertible car seat 2016.
This Diono car seat is undoubtedly one of the best (if not the best) in the market of convertible car seats today; it only comes in slightly behind the Graco toddler car seat above but it’s not to say it’s not as good. This Radian car seat is ranked 4.5 out of 5 stars and surpasses all safety requirements.
The Diono convertible car seat is the only convertible AND booster seat available in the market today that has a full steel reinforced frame!
♥ Rear facing car seat: 5 to 45 pounds
♥ Forward facing car seat: 20-80 pounds
♥ Booster car seat: up to 120 pounds
My favorite feature of these Diono Radian car seats are their versatility; this Diono Radian car seat is exactly that! Plus, it doesn’t look like a traditional kiddy car seat, it has a cool, racing look to it.
This means that it is indeed a universal car seat for a child, the epitome of 3 in 1 car seats. Made with a full steel frame, the Diono RXT can comfortably seat children weighing 20 to 120 pounds and is known as a rear facing convertible car seat but it is both a rear and forward facing seat and also convertible to a booster seat to be used as a kids car seats later on…. Amazing, right?!
The Diono Radian RXT (available here) has patented SafeStop energy feature which is incorporated in its energy absorbing harness. Such a feature works relatively to its reinforced sidewalls, assuring the foolproof safety and protection provided by the Diono car seat.
This breakthrough creation in children’s car seats serves as the benchmark for all the convertible car seats in 2016 market.
Recaro car seats provide luxury and ultimate comfort in kids car seats with their cotton and polyester padding and linings. This Recaro car seat (new 2016 model, available here) is definitely one of the best selling car seats in 6 far.
The safety and protection accorded by its Racing-Inspired Side Impact Protection makes it one of the most durable and stable car seats available in the market today
♥ Rear-facing: 5 to 40 pounds
♥ Forward-facing: 20 to 65 pounds
The Recaro child seat (available here) can be easily adjusted without the need to re-thread, and has a cool mesh air ventilation system! Its real automotive PUR foam places it at the top of the car seat game, coupled with its modern and up to date car seat safety standards.
It’s comfort and safety in one package with this Recaro convertible car seat!
This Chicco car seat (new 2016 available here) boasts an exclusive technology to ensure a quick and tight fit for your child. It’s the only car seat that has this exclusive SuperCinch technology and out of all the convertible car seats, it’s the fastest, it’s the fastest car seat to install.
The Chicco convertible car seat provides 9 different reclining positions, the most available of any convertible car seat on the market
♥ Rear-facing: 5 to 40 pounds
♥ Forward-facing: 22 to 65 pounds
This NextFit car seat for baby is the newest model out of all the Chicco car seats and also comes with the following accessories and features:
♥ Removable insert for smaller infants
♥ 5 point harness (including 2 chest clips)
♥ A headrest with 6 different positions available
♥ Seat pad is machine washable
♥ Cup holder (removable)
From all the thousands of toddler car seat reviews, this Chicco Nextfit is highly rated at 4.5 stars out of 5.
Its ‘KeyFit’ feature lets you accommodate your child as he/she grows from infant to toddler
Its convenience and flexibility with it’s 9 reclining positions, makes the Chicco car seat definitely one to consider in convertible car seats.
Britax, being one of the leaders in mobile safety for more than 70 years now, has provided us with numerous car seat breakthroughs to ensure the safety and comfort in car seats for the littles as we travel.
It has been designed to exceed federal safety standards as it was made like a shell, to encapsulate your child by ensuring uttermost safety from crash impact and debris. It comes with a harness with 10 position capabilities and a 2-position buckle.
It has the same Safecell features of the Marathon model above but has more advanced side impact level of protection with the padded head rest for extra extra side impact head protection.
With the Britax Marathon and Britax Boulevard models, the uncompromising focus of each Britax convertible car seat has made both of these some of the best toddler car seats not only in Europe, but in America as well.
Maxi Cosi release new car seats to keep up with safety standards each year. The latest 2016 Maxi Cosi car seat, the Maxi Cosi Pria 70 (available here) is available in a whooping, 15 different colors and styles (including leather)!
The Maxi Cosi Convertible Car Seat comes in premium fabrics as the new special edition range. Fabrics such as leather and designs that are not available with any other convertible car seat on the market!
My favorite feature from this Maxi Cosi car seat is its OneClick Latch Connectors, letting us as parents to easily fit the seat to the car. Easy breezy!
♥ Rear Facing: 9-40 pounds
♥ Forward Facing: 40-70 pounds
Featuring advanced air cushion, Maxi Cosi car seats ensure the top side impact safety for your child. This air protect system works to protect your child’s head aswell as the Flex Tech construction which ensures multi-directional crash management.
This Safety First car seat is a very affordable car seat for toddlers as it is one of the best sellers in the category of cheap car seats.
As an added bonus, the Safety First Alpha Omega Elite comes with rotating arms rests and a detachable cup holder
Safety First Alpha Omega Elite:
♥ Rear facing: 5-35 pounds
♥ Forward facing: 22-50 pounds
♥ Booster: 40-100 pounds
Given it’s cheaper price (check price) than the ones given above, remember the good old saying ‘you get what you pay for’, hence we believe, this Safety First convertible car seat is definitely not one of the most durable in the market of car seats for babies.
However, the versatility of this car seat is also evident with its ability to accommodate children up to 100 pounds.
Aside from its side impact protection, this Safety 1st car seat (the Alpha Omega car seat) also features 3-position recline system that can be adjusted with just one hand.
Last on our list of the best convertible car seat 2016 is one made by Evenflo car seats, the Evenflo Tribute LX (available here)
Just like the aforementioned, this cheap toddler car seat by Evenflo, boasts of multiple-shoulder harness positions, as well as an upfront harness adjustment and easy buckle release.
The integration of the body cushion on this Evenflo car seat provides added comfort to your child and it also comes with a removable pillow for older children. It has even surpassed the Federal safety standards, for the Evenflo convertible car seat is designed and tested for structural integrity at all levels.
Infant Car Seats v Convertible Car Seats
Aside from keeping your little ones safe as you travel, child car seats let you transfer your kids from point A to point B without the risk of having them slip from your sight and reach.That being affirmed, purchasing the best child car seat is paramount, for a baby carrier offers comfort, protection, and safety for the little ones, and convenience, as well as peace of mind for the parents looking out for their welfare.
As we have already mentioned, there is two types of car seats that are sold in the market today: infant car seats and convertable car seats. Comfort, safety, and convenience are both provided by the two, but let me do a car seat comparison by pointing out the pros and cons of each.
Infant Car Seats
Infant car seats are a type of baby capsule that are best suited for newborns till they reach their first year. A baby car seat offers a cozy nook and ample protection for babies aged 0-12 months, with its comfortable in-line padding and secure harness. Infant car seats could be easily snapped in and out not only from your car, but also to your stroller. For more information on infant car seats aswell as out top picks of the safest infant car seats to buy, click here.
Convertible Car Seats
If you are still confused after reading about the above baby convertible car seats and still don’t understand what is a convertible car seat and how does it differ to an infant car seat above, let me try and explain the difference to you simply.
A convertible car seat is considered to be more ‘universal’. It’s exactely how its called – convertible for they could be used by both infants, toddlers and your kids as they generally come available as a 3 in one car seat or 4 in 1 car seat. Convertible car seats as known more as car seats for kids as they are not appropriate as newborn car seats.
Convertible car seats can be either a rear facing car seat, a forward facing car seat and a booster seat. How flexible, right? This, all in one car seat, will need to be installed into the car due to it’s weight and size. All the convertible car seats we have provided above provide for easy installation.
Which Car Seat Should You Buy
Investing in both a baby car seat and a child seat is deemed to be logical, for assuring the convenience of transferring your baby in and out of the car (infant car seat) aswell as uttermost safety and security when traveling as they grow (convertible car seat).
Infants under 20 pounds are better off with the smaller baby carriage being an infant car seat, however, as your child grows, a convertible car seat caters for your young toddler to young children and can easily easily adapt to our ever changing needs.
These car seats for toddlers we have listed above are the best car seat brands and top convertible car seats you’ll find in 2016, meeting and exceeding all safety requirements and standards, crash tested and side impact tested.