Safest Convertible Car Seat in 2015
Are you looking for the safest convertible car seat for your child?
If you're a caring parent who wants your child to be safe in the car, you're probably searching for the safest convertible car seat in 2014. Since you're interested in the safety of your child, I would like to share with you a few pieces of information related to car seat safety.
The most important thing I learned while doing research about safety of car seats is that there probably isn't a good way (at least for now) to measure safety of car seats. If a car seat meets the Government's requirements, it can be sold on the market. The thing is - the car seat can either pass the test or fail, there aren't any grades or ratings. Since car seats are fairly inexpensive (compared to e.g. cars), there aren't any independent agencies that specialize in testing safety of car seats.
There are some organizations (like Consumer Reports) that do their own tests, but often their methods are questionable and it's really difficult to say whether their results are of value or they don't present any value at all. If you'd like to know why is that, check out Car-Seat.org forum for further explanations.
How to find the safest convertible car seat?
To answer this question I would like to quote one of the users of car-seat.org forum: "In the end, the safest car seat is one that fits your vehicle, fits your child and will be used correctly each and every trip.(..) Not every car seat is compatible with every vehicle, and some seats are outgrown by a child long before they're ready for the next step. A child will be safer in a 5pt harness at the age of 6 - even one without EPS/EPP foam and no side impact protection, than they would be in a booster that had both.".
So, to find the safest convertible car seat you should start by looking for car seats that meet your and your child's requirements. You can always look for some extra safety features as well. When searching for a certain model, I suggest you should consider only the most known (and quality) brands and choose a model that is already used by thousands of people . Why? If it had any safety issues, they'd be spotted by other parents and already fixed, so you don't have to worry that the model you've chosen isn't safe for your child.
Britax Marathon 70-G3 Convertible Car Seat
Britax Marathon 70-G3 is a convertible car seat that accommodates children rear facing from 5 to 40 pounds (2.3 to 18 kg) and forward facing from 20 up to 70 pounds (9 to 31.75 kg). This car seat features multiple safety technologies including:
- base with safecell technology manufactured to compress in a crash (minimizes forward movement of your child's head during a frontal crash)
- integrated steel bars (they strengthen the connection to the vehicle)
- energy absorbing versa-tether features a two-point attachment and staged-release tether webbing to reduce the crash forces reaching the child
This car seat features 5-point tangle-free harness that are easy to use and loading the baby into the seat is a snap. You can also easily adjust its position. It's also very easy to install (in both positions). The fabric is very soft, so your child will travel comfortably. Please note that this seat is pretty large, therefore it might not fit well in smaller cars, especially in the read-facing position.
Diono RadianR100 Convertible Car Seat
Diono RadianR100 is a convertible car seat that accommodates children rear facing from 5 to 40lbs (2.3 to 18 kg) and forward facing from 20 to 65 lbs (9 to 29.5 kg) and up to 57'' . It can also work as a booster up to 100 lbs (45 kg) and 57''. This car seat features 5 shoulder and 3 buckle positions, so you'll surely find a good fit for your child. If has a rear-facing tether connection strap and features the SuperLatch system (in short: it's super easy to use it!).
The Diodo RadianR100 is easy to assemble and install in the car. It's also very slim - you could even fit 3 of those in the backseat of your car, provided you own an average-sized one. Also, if you'd like to travel by an airplane with your little one, this car seat works well for that purpose. It folds compactly, so it isn't extra-difficult to take it to an airport just as another piece of luggage. This car seat is solid and comfortable (although the fabric isn't of top quality) and will serve you well. If you need a convertible car seat that doesn't take a lot of place in the backseat of your car, this one is definitely worth considering.
Britax Boulevard 70-G3 Convertible Car Seat
Britax Boulevard 70-G3 is another great convertible car seat from Britax. It accommodates children rear facing from 5 to 40 pounds (2.3 to 18 kg) and forward facing from 20 to 70 pounds (9 to 31.75 kg). Since Britax is all about safety of the children, the number of safety features is pretty huge: side impact protection, base with safecell technology (minimizes forward movement of the child in case of a frontal crash), steel bard that strengthen the connection to the car and HUGS (Harness Ultra Guard System) to minimize forward movement in case of a crash.
Tangle-free 5 point harness that allows easy boarding of your child is in place as well. You can adjust the seat to 3 recline positions. The lever is located on the front of the seat, so if you plan to install it rear-facing, adjusting the seat before installing it is a wise thing to do. Overall, this car seat is well designed, versatile and comfortable (lots of padding) for you child, but please bear in mind that it's pretty bulky as well. If that's what you're looking for, you've found a great product!
Britax Roundabout 55 Convertible Car Seat
Britax Roundabout 55 Convertible Car Seat is another great convertible car seat manufactured by Britax. Its price is worth mentioning - it's cheaper than most other Britax car seats (that cost over $200) and costs only about $150. It accommodates kids rear-facing from 5 to 40 pounds and forward-facing from 20 to 55 pounds. When it comes to child's safety, it has all of the most important features other Britax convertible seats have: five-point tangle-free harness (for a secure fit as your child grows), SafeCell Technology (reduces the risk of a head injury during a collision) and Side Impact Protection system (this one doesn't need any clarification, right?). If you're concerned about using it on an airplane travel, you should know that it's approved.
The main difference between this model and other more expensive Britax car seats is that this one lacks some convenience features (like quick adjust harness, etc.). If you would like to save over $50 and you don't see any of those features as a must-have, then Britax Roundabout is a great choice.
Evenflo Tribute 5 Convertible Car Seat
If you're looking for an inexpensive convertible car seat, Evenflo Tribute 5 is a great choice. It accommodates children rear-facing from 5 to 35lbs (2.3 to 13.6 kg), and forward-facing from 20lbs (and at least 1-year) to 40lbs (9 to 18 kg).
It features multiple shoulder harness positions for good fit to your child, plus the upfront harness can be conveniently adjusted. It also features an integrated body pillow to add comfort to your baby. This car seat provides safety of your child (side-impact protection included) and is pretty comfortable (the mentioned pillow plus a removable head pillow). The fabric isn't of top quality (like fabric in the more expensive models), but it's good enough to provide comfort to your baby.
Evenflo Tribute 5 comes with a latch system and a tether and if you don't use them, there are little loops on the back of the seat where you can hang them. It's easy to install the seat in the car and one can quickly take the baby in and out of the seat. If you're looking for an inexpensive car seat that gets the job done well but doesn't have any fancy features, this one is a great choice. If you don't personally have children but you sometimes take your nephew or niece for a ride, this car seat is an excellent choice.
Also, I you have any valuable pieces of information about safety of car seats, please share it with the readers!