Grandparents that are still able to drive should think about getting a second convertible car seat. There’s nothing better than taking a trip with the little toddler. Switching the only car seat the parents have can be tiresome. Especially, if you want to take a spontaneous trip. I believe that safety comes first for you, that’s why you are here.
If you are interested in a car seat, don’t go for any model, get the one that will be the easiest to use. A seat for grandparents is what I recommend. Easy to install model, that does not weigh a lot. The convertible seat will be used by the toddler but you are the one that will be setting it up. This can happen on a daily basis, so you need a lightweight model.
I know that it’s not easy to find a good model. This takes time and a lot of browsing. That’s why we are here. We compiled a list for you. Here are the 5 best convertible car seats for grandparents.
- Weighs 17.8 lbs
- 3 Recline Positions
- Weight Limit – 100 lbs
- Side Impact Protection Technology
- Magnetic Chest Clip
Let me present our first and best option on this list, the Maxi-Cosi Pria Max 3-in-1. It comes recommended to everyone, not only grandparents. Anyways, grandparents will love this lightweight car seat. It only weighs 17.8 pounds. With the most important feature out of the way, let’s take a look at the other good things this car seat offers.
This is a 3-in-1 car seat. It’s a rear-facing(4-40 pounds) car seat, forward-facing(up to 60 pounds), and Booster Mode(up to 100 pounds) as well. This makes it really versatile, it can be used in all growing stages. In other words, it grows with the child. You can use it until the child exceeds the 100 pounds weight limit.
It offers side-impact protection, protects against whiplash as well. Buckle up with the magnetic chest clip. This will make sure the child stays in their seat. The mechanics are easy to use, require only 1 hand. This comes quite in handy, a must for car seats for grandparents.
The Pria Max is an easy-to-use model, quite comfortable for the child too. Features QuickFit Adjustments that make positioning and finding the comfortable position no problem. The harness and the headrest are automatically adjusted. Installed by latch connectors, anyone can do it, no tools required.
Overall, a great lightweight car seat that is here to stay. Features like machine washable, EZ out, and 2 cup holders are just something extra. Highly recommended to grandparents.
- Weighs only 17 pounds.
- Can be used up to age 10.
- Superior impact protection.
- Slightly expensive.
- Not the traditional rear-facing position.
- All-in-One Convertible Car Seat
- 3 Recline Positions
- Up To 100 lbs
- Lightweight Design
- QuickFit Harness & Headrest
Here is our budget option, the Safety 1st Grow & Go. Although a relatively cheap model, it’s a very popular one. It keeps the child safe and it does its job. Grandparents will like this definitely, weighs only 18 pounds, easy to use and install. Check it out, I know that it doesn’t make sense to buy something extra expensive, especially if you are not looking for toddler car seats.
You can use this as a rear-facing car seat, as a booster seat, or a forward-facing car seat. Versatile baby gear. I bet you are interested in the weight limit. In rear-facing mode, 5-40 pounds. In the forward-facing position, 22-65 pounds, and the Booster mode, 40-100 pounds.
Featuring QuickFit adjustments. You can adjust the headrest and harness positions in a quick motion. There are harness holders that can hold the straps while you are taking the child in or out of the seat. This makes it great for grandparents, no more tangled-up harness straps.
Certified and up to standards. Offers protection, the installation process is simple, versatile, and easy to clean. All in all, a really good car seat for a great price. Works really well as a secondary car seat, parents friendly.
- Easy to use, 3-in-1 seat for grandparents.
- Weighs only 18 pounds.
- 2 Cup Holders.
- Available in more than 10 colors.
- Only 1-Year Warranty Guarantee.
- Combination Seat – Rear & Forward
- 2 Layer Impact Protection
- ClickTight Installation
- Up To 65 Pounds
- Weighs 27 Pounds
Now, I understand that some of you won’t like the “Best Overall”, so I want to give you a top-notch alternative, the Britax Boulevard. I think most of you are familiar with Britax, one of the best convertible car seat manufacturers. The Boulevard has all the features you want in a car seat and then some more. The only downside is that it weighs 27 pounds. Grandparents that don’t mind this will like this model quite a lot.
This is a combination model, a rear-facing car seat, and a forward-facing one. The high-back booster is not available, so this falls more under toddler car seats. The rear-facing mode supports 4-50 pounds, while the forward-facing seat supports up to 65 pounds.
You may not like the item’s weight but you will like how easy it is to install. Featuring the ClickTight installation system. Really easy to install, no effort, no tools. Great for grandparents. Also, the Click & Safe harness. Follow the sound for the best harness tightening position.
The impact protection on this one is just amazing. Offering 2 layer impact protection. The Anti Rebound Bar makes sure the seat stays in place in crashes. It also has something called the SafeCell Impact Protection. An energy-absorbing foam, sturdy steel frame, and a tether to protect against whiplash.
I just love everything about this seat, the way it looks, the features it offers, the protection. I would put this in the first place but it’s not something I would offer to grandparents immediately. Although the 7 recline positions and quick-adjust are great for the toddler. It’s not really a compact design for grandparents. If you feel like this is not that heavy for you, by all means, go for this one.
- Plenty of safety features, top-notch safety ratings.
- The easiest installation process.
- Comfortable for toddlers.
- Not a booster seat
- Quite expensive
Best Car Seat Under $300
- 3-in-1 Convertible Car Seat
- 6 Recline Positions
- 10 Harness Positions
- ProtectPlus Engineered
- Weighs 21 lbs
My guess is that you are buying this as a secondary, so it makes sense that you are looking for an affordable car seat. Most likely, the parents already have a high-grade seat. Let me show you the first under 300$ model, Graco Extend2Fit. Graco has been crushing it lately, the Extend2Fit is quite popular if not, the most popular item on this list.
Here, I listed the 3-in-1 model but there’s a 2-in-1 model available. The combination car seat is even less expensive than this one. If you are not planning to use the seat as the child grows, you can go for the 2-in-1. The weight limit is 4-50 pounds for the rear-facing one, 22-65 pounds for the front-facing mode, and 30-100 for the Booster mode.
Quite a versatile car seat with many options to adjust for comfort. The extension panel is adjustable to 4 positions, this allows for more legroom in rear-facing mode. No-rethread harness, adjustable to 10 positions in one quick motion. And of course, the 6 recline positions.
Up to safety standards, with the extra safety feature ProtectPlus. The steel frame is quite sturdy, will not be deformed in crashes. This model has gone through some safety testing, protects from all kinds of crashes. Comes highly recommended, not a lightweight design but I think you will still like it. Can’t find a car seat like this for that price.
- An affordable car seat.
- Ensures child passenger safety.
- 3 modes of use.
- Comfortable for children
- A bit heavy.
- The cup holders are kind of bad.
- Weight Limit – 120 lbs
- Five Point Harness
- EasyClick Latch Installation
- Angled For Comfort
The last item on this list, the Evenflo EveryStage DLX. Finishing the list with another under 300$ seat for grandparents. We are finishing on a fine note if you ask me. An affordable convertible seat, the biggest weight limit of all the items. It’s not as lightweight as the first and second item but you will disregard that. Let’s see why that is.
As with most of our options, it’s an all-in-one model, featuring three modes of use. Rear-facing, forward-facing, and Booster mode. The high-back booster supports up to 120 pounds. Custom-fit design, angled for maximum comfort.
Installed with EasyClick Latch, you will find this easy enough to do. This also maximizes safety, the seat is secured into place. Tested and approved, up to government safety standards. Despite the 22 pounds weight, there’s no ease of use issue. Works great as a secondary, you won’t have to move it.
Adjustable harness, 10 positions. Moving the headrest requires only one hand, there’s a highlighted level indicator. You can put the seat pad in the washing machine, easy to maintain. Neat 2 cup holders as an added feature.
- Grows with the child, 10-year investment.
- Quite comfortable for children, reduces cramps.
- Good safety ratings.
- A bit heavy
We included top-notch car seat models here, so it may be hard to decide. No worries though, a buying guide follows. We’ll discuss what makes a car seat good for grandparents. We’ll skip some obvious features, I’m talking about industry standards.
Obviously, when it comes to grandparents, you want the seat to be lightweight. Grandpa and grandma may switch cars, so you need to move the seat. Some seats are used as cradles, so you take them with you. I’m not saying this goes for all of you but I understand that most of you want a light seat. Otherwise, you would just pick any car seat.
The next thing to consider is the age and weight of the child. This is important because you need to plan out how long you will be using the seat. Let’s say you have an infant or a toddler, getting an all-in-one model makes sense here. You will be using the seat for a while so you want it to grow with the child.
On the other hand, if you are buying a seat for someone who has passed the toddler stage, you may want to consider a convertible seat or a Booster one. What I am saying is to think about how long you will be using the seat. It does not make sense to pay for a feature you are never going to use.
This goes without saying but any seat you buy should be up to safety standards. Safety is the most important feature. Honestly, all of these seats do a great job at protecting in cases of crashes. But I understand that some of you want to take every measure available.
Car seats although comfortable at first can cause cramps on long trips. The rear-facing seats are known for causing cramps. The convertible and booster ones can cause back pain. So, comfort features are underrated if you ask me. As your child grows, you will see it ask for a comfortable position.
So, don’t overlook comfort features. Look for something that will keep your child safe but also keep it comfortable too. Recline positions, harness, and headrest positions, all of these features are important.
Babies weighing 20 pounds can be both in a rear-facing and in a forward-facing seat. It depends on the stage of growth. The rear-facing mode supports up to 40 pounds but babies that have outgrown the height limit should switch to forward-facing.
Any car seat up to safety standards protects the child in cases of car accidents. The price of the car seat does not have anything to do with it. Keep in mind, how the child fits in the car seat is important for impact protection. Seats that offer a better fit, also offer better protection.
The Britax Boulevard has the highest safety ratings on this list. Any Britax, Graco, and Evenflo products offer plenty of safety.
The average 5 year old should be in a forward-facing seat. It depends on the weight and the height. Most 5-year-olds are either in the forward-facing seat or in the Booster seat.