Choosing a car seat for your little one can be overwhelming.
Whether you’re cruising the aisles in the store or scrolling around online, you know there are so many different types out there.
Many parents choose an all-in-one car seat because they only have to buy one car seat as their child grows.
These seats allow you to transition from a rear-facing car seat for your infant to a forward facing 5-point harness seat for your toddler.
From there you can use it as a high-back booster with a seatbelt to finally a backless booster with a seatbelt.
While safety is always priority number one, you also want to consider things like durability, price, special features, and customer reviews.
Check out our guide that takes all these important factors into consideration so you get the best all-in-one car seat for your child.
While everyone’s preferences are different, customer reviews can shed light on how the car seat functions and how comfortable it is for children.
If you read a list of negative reviews from different parents, they may be on to something. Don’t forget, very few products will receive a string of 5-star reviews.
But, you still want to choose one that has more positives than negatives.
Taking all of these things into consideration, here’s our list for the best all-in-one car seats.
|Graco Slim-Fit 3-in-1 Convertible Car Seat||Convertible car seat, Annabelle||26.81 x 19.88 x 22.36|
|Evenflo Symphony Elite||All-in-one Convertible car seat||27.5 x 21 x 20.8|
|Safety 1st Grow and Go 3-in-1||3-in-1 Convertible car seat24.5 x 19.2 x 24.2||24.5 x 19.2 x 24.2|
|Baby Jogger City View||Space Saving all-in-one car seat||19.96 x 18.07 x 30.63|
|Graco Milestone all-in-one||Convertible car seat||21 x 17.5 x 21 inches|
Our First Choice:
Graco Slim-Fit 3-in-1 Convertible Car Seat, Annabelle
Our top choice for all-in-one car seats is the Graco Slim-Fit 3-in-1 Convertible Car Seat.
This model is an excellent choice because it grows with your child, from 5 pounds all the way to 100 pounds.
Safety wise you can’t get much better. It is made and crash tested to meet or exceed U.S. standard FMVSS 213. It’s also been tested for side-impact testing.
Special features include an adjustable four-position recline that grows with your child. The seat cover is washable, and the seat comes with rotating cup holders.
People who have bought this seat also like it because it’s a good fit for smaller cars and has lots of cushion for their babies.
- Good value for the price
- Great for smaller cars
- Fits children up to 100 pounds
- Some users wish it had 5 recline positions instead of 4
Rating: (5.0 / 5) Cleaning: (5.0 / 5) Durability: (5.0 / 5) Features: (5.0 / 5) Reviews: (4.5 / 5) Pricing: (5.0 / 5) Average: (4.9 / 5)
Our Second Choice:
Evenflo Symphony Elite All-in-one Convertible car seat
This all-in-one car seat supports children from 5 to 110 pounds, so you have an extra ten pounds of leeway here versus the Graco model above.
It exceeds all federal and safety guidelines and features Evenflo’s e3 side impact protection. The slide harness means you get an accurate fit every time.
This can be helpful as the seasons change and the bulkiness of your child’s clothing changes.
It’s also easier to use and adjust as your child grows.
In the special features department, your little one can ride in style with an expandable cup holder to fit drinks of all sizes.
- Can be installed in 60 seconds with the 5-point infinite slide harness
- Pads can be machine washed separately
- Large in size, may not fit smaller cars
- Odor on cushions can be difficult to get out at times
Rating: (4.5 / 5) Cleaning: (4.5 / 5) Durability: (5.0 / 5) Features: (5.0 / 5) Reviews: (4.5 / 5) Pricing: (4.0 / 5) Average: (4.6 / 5)
Our Third Choice:
Safety 1st Grow and Go 3-in-1 Convertible Car Seat
Here is another all-in-one car seat that checks all of the boxes of the things you should be looking for.
The pricing is similar to the other Graco model listed but only comes with three recline positions instead of four.
When it comes to safety, this car seat meets or exceeds federal, ASTM, and JPMA standards.
It does support children from five pounds to 100 pounds, so there is plenty of value for the money.
The built-in harness holder comes in handy when you’re getting little ones in and out of the seat.
The harness will be less likely to get in the way, and your baby will be less likely to tug at it.
It also comes with two cup holders, one for a drink and one for a snack.
- Easy to clean with removable seat covers
- Attractive design
- Adjust height of headrest and harness in one easy step
- Only 3 reclining positions available
- May be a tight fit in smaller cars
Rating: (5.0 / 5) Cleaning: (5.0 / 5) Durability: (5.0 / 5) Features: (5.0 / 5) Reviews: (4.5 / 5) Pricing: (4.0 / 5) Average: (4.8 / 5)
Our Fourth Choice:
Baby Jogger City View Space Saving all-in-one Car Seat
When you’re looking for an all-in-one car seat, you may scroll pass this one because of the price.
It’s hard not to notice that it costs nearly double of many of the other all-in-one car seats.
But, remember what we said? You get what you pay for, and this model is loaded with features you may love.
Safety wise, it meets or exceeds all government standards. It includes a secure-stop anti-rebound bar.
This reduces rearward movement during a crash, but can only be used in the rear-facing position.
Just like its competitors, this seat can be used for children from five pounds to 100 pounds.
In the special features department, the headrest can be adjusted in ten different positions. You can change it as your child grows. The cup holder is also detachable.
You can not only put it on either side, but you can take it out making it easy to wash.
- Installs easily using push-button LATCH
- Narrow design
- Customers comment on the plush padding
- Pricey compared to other all-in-one seats
- Heavy, so don’t plan on moving from car to car that often
Rating: (0.0 / 5) Cleaning: (5.0 / 5) Durability: (5.0 / 5) Features: (0.0 / 5) Reviews: (4.5 / 5) Pricing: (4.0 / 5) Average: (3.1 / 5)
Our Fifth Choice: Graco Milestone all-in-one Convertible Car Seat, Gotham
From five pounds to 100 pounds, this Graco model will be with your child for a long time. It’s priced right and has many safety features that parents love.
Graco uses an exclusive InRight LATCH attachment. This allows you to install the car seat easily and safely with an audio click, so you know you’ve done it right.
The Simply Safe Adjust Harness System adjusts the height of the harness and headrest so that your child is always safely buckled.
This car seat also meets or exceeds all U.S. safety standards and has been side impact tested.
It reclines in four different positions and does include a cup holder.
Beyond that, there aren’t any other special features included with this seat.
- Removable plush inserts for greater infant comfort
- Washable seat cover
- Slender fit for smaller cars
- Not many special features
- Can be difficult to clean
Safety: (4.5 / 5) Cleaning: (5.0 / 5) Durability: (5.0 / 5) Pricing: (4.0 / 5) Average: (4.6 / 5)
When you’re searching for an all-in-one car seat you want to make sure that you find one that checks all of the boxes for your needs.
But, you also want to be sure you are using the right car seat position to match your child’s growth.
Statistics show that using the right car safety seat or booster seat lowers the risk of death or serious injury by more than 70 percent.
Doctors often recommend keeping your child rear-facing for as long as possible.
This position is the safest for the child to ride. Typically, children can remain in the rear-facing position until they reach the 40-pound mark.
Since all babies grow at different rates, it’s difficult to put an exact age on when they’ll reach this weight.
After all, some babies are born at ten pounds or more! But, many children can remain rear-facing until their second birthday.
At this point, you’ll want to switch over to the forward-facing position using the seat’s built-in harness. The weight limit for this position is typically around 65 pounds or more.
Again, never rush to move your child to the next stage of their car seat. Their safety is priority number one.
These different seat positions are created to keep them as safe as possible as they grow.
When a child grows out of this position, a belt-positioning booster seat should be used until the lap, and shoulder seatbelts fit correctly.
This usually happens when a child is anywhere from 8-12 years old and is 4 foot 9 inches tall.
All children grow at different rates so your transitioning stages for one child to another may differ even if they’re siblings.
Never buy car seats second hand
This can be dangerous because you don’t know their condition or if they have been previously recalled.
Always buy car seats new so that you can keep track of any recalls and have the peace of mind of knowing your child is in a new car seat.
As you take all of that into consideration, here are some factors you should keep in mind as you search for the best all-in-one car seat for your child.
The whole point of buying an all-in-one car seat is so that you don’t have to buy a new car seat every time your child has a growth spurt.
That’s why durability is one of the most important factors to consider. You want one that isn’t going to crack or come apart.
If that happens, your child’s safety can be compromised which is something you don’t want to happen. Be conscious of safety ratings and crash test results.
Make sure the car seat you’re considering has passed and surpassed all requirements.
Also, do your research to see if the model you’re interested in has ever been recalled.
This information can be a good indication as to whether the car seat is durable and one that you want to consider.
Since you’re only buying one car seat versus two or three as your child grows, you can expect to pay more for an all-in-one car seat versus other car seats.
But, if you add up the cost of two or three car seats, you’ll find the value of an all-in-one seat is reasonable.
Generally speaking, the price will be less than the cost of buying multiple seats.
Keep in mind that the brand and features you choose will impact the cost. More features mean it will be more expensive.
If expense is an issue, chose the all-in-one seat you want and add it to your baby registry.
Often times people will buy a more substantial gift together, especially one that is a necessity, like a car seat.
When it comes to special features, many car seats have bonuses like a cup holder or extra neck support. As with a car, the more “loaded” a car seat is, the more it will cost.
Although you may not need the Mercedes Benz of car seats, special features can make life easier for you because your baby will be more comfortable.
A cup holder can prevent the continual passing of a cup while you’re driving.
A headrest can make the ride more comfy for a fussy baby. It all depends on how much these types of features are worth to you.
When choosing and installing a car seat, remember that before you’re allowed to leave the hospital with your newborn, someone from the hospital will inspect your car seat.
They’ll look to make sure you have the right kind for your infant and that it’s in the correct position. They’ll also look at whether it’s installed properly.
If you have questions or problems when installing your car seat before heading to the hospital, many local police departments will often offer to check it for you.
They’ll make sure it’s fastened securely and positioned correctly.