We all want to keep our children safe. Which is why it’s important to parents that they are making the best choices for their children, including keeping them safe.
Since September is Child Passenger Safety Month and Baby Safety Month, we thought we’d start the month of safety looking at the top-rated car seats and share some car seat safety tips to help parents make a more informed decision when choosing the best baby and toddler car seat.
Here are our top picks for the safest car seats on the market. Check out the features on each one to find out which is the best baby car seat for your family.
1. GRACO 4EVER ALL-IN-ONE
The Graco 4ever All-in-One boasts a near-perfect safety rating of 9.8 and was the top-rated car seat on Best Car Seat Hub. This convertible model can be modified to suit newborns, toddlers, and big kids alike, so it’s the only car seat you’ll ever have to buy.
- Steel frame
- 5-point safety harness
- 1-second latch system
- Impact-absorbing padding
2. BRITAX USA ADVOCATE
The Britax USA Advocate is a heavy-duty convertible top-rated car seat with an outstanding safety rating of 9.6. The expiration on this model is 10 years, which enables you to use it for longer than other car seats with similar features.
- Steel frame
- 14 harness positions
- Impact-absorbing frame
- ClickTight Installation System
3. GRACO MILESTONE ALL-IN-ONE
Despite being pretty new compared to other models, the Graco Milestone All-in-One quickly joined the ranks of safest car seats with a 9.5 safety rating. This is another sturdy, adjustable seat that will keep your kiddos safe for years to come.
- Steel-reinforced frame
- Energy-absorbing EPS foam
- Simply Safe Adjust Harness
4. THE SAFETY 1ST GROW AND GO 3-IN-1
The Safety 1st Grow and Go 3-in-1 says it all in the name. This best baby car seat is built to transition with your child as they grow from a newborn, to a toddler, to a big kid who only requires a seatbelt.
- Side impact protection
- QuickFit Harness
- Strong construction
5. DIONO RAINIER ALL-IN-ONE
The Diono Rainier All-in-One is a solid, space-saving, convertible car seat and a great choice. With memory foam and a 9.3 safety rating, the Diono Rainier is one of the most comfortable and safest car seats money can buy.
- EPS foam
- 5-point harness
- Extra-deep sidewalls
6. BRITAX MARATHON CLICKTIGHT
The Britax Marathon ClickTight is another fantastic product by Britax. This convertible car seat has a safety rating of 9.1 and can be modified from a rear-facing seat to a forward-facing seat that can safely seat children up to 65 pounds.
- Steel frame
- Energy-absorbing base
- Britax SafeCell impact protection
- Impact-absorbing tether
7. THE EVENFLO SYMPHONY ELITE ALL-IN-ONE
The Symphony All-in-One by Evenflo is a popular choice among the safest car seats due to its ease of use, comfort, and safety features. This Evenflo model has a safety rating of 9 out of 10 by Best Car Seat Hub.
- Side-impact protection
- Steel frame
- FAA approval
Car Seat Safety Tips
With a myriad of different car seats to choose from, it’s hard to know which one is right for your little one. Pick the perfect model with these helpful tips and a complete list of the safest car seats on the market.
AVOID COMMON MISTAKES
Before you purchase and install your child’s new top-rated car seat, it’s important that you learn how to do it properly. Avoid these five common car seat mistakes made by new and seasoned parents to ensure your children are safe during every trip.
1. NOT SECURING THE SEAT TIGHTLY ENOUGH
Many parents thread the seatbelt, secure the latch, and call it good, but this leaves a dangerous amount of wiggle room. Tighten the belt so that the seat doesn’t have more than an inch of wiggle room.
2. LEAVING THE STRAPS TOO LOOSE
In addition to the seat itself, the harness straps should also be tightened snugly against your child’s body without causing discomfort. As a rule of thumb, tighten the straps until you can’t pinch the slack between your thumb and forefinger when your child is strapped in.
3. ANGLING THE SEAT INCORRECTLY
There is a certain angle at which your car seat should be positioned. The seat should be reclined enough that your child rests against the back of the seat, but should not exceed a 45-degree angle.
4. MISPOSITIONING THE HARNESS RETAINER CLIP
A very popular car seat mistake is to have the harness retainer clip in the wrong position. Make sure that the clip rests against your child’s chest at armpit level.
DON’T LEAVE A CHILD IN A HOT CAR
Be careful not to leave children in a hot car. Even if the car doesn’t feel hot to you, children’s bodies absorb heat faster than adults’, and a car can heat up quickly. On an 80-degree day the car can become much too hot for a child quickly, reaching dangerous heat within 10 minutes. Don’t think that’s enough time to just dash into the store and pick up a gallon of milk. What if there’s an unusually long line at checkout?
The same holds true for leaving a child in a cold car. Don’t do it. Best practice is not to leave a child alone in a car at all.
Know of a top-rated car seat that we missed? Share it with us below in the comments.