The Cosco Empire All-in-One Convertible Car Seat is a versatile and long-lasting car seat that accommodates children from 5 pounds to 80 pounds. It can be used in rear-facing, forward-facing harness, and belt-positioning modes.
The Spring Petals design is both stylish and practical, with an easy-to-clean fabric cover. Safety is a top priority with side impact protection, a 5-point harness, and an adjustable headrest to ensure a secure fit. The car seat meets or exceeds all federal safety standards. Parents looking for a car seat that prioritizes safety and style will find the Cosco Empire All-in-One Convertible Car Seat to be an excellent choice.
I’ve tested my fair share of convertible car seats, but some of them just didn’t work with my child. When I got my hands on the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 Convertible Car Seat, I was instantly impressed.
The Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 is an ideal budget convertible car seat for parents. It’s best for kids of 4 to 80 pounds through transitions. However, while the cup holder, headrest, body pillow, and reclining orientations are the best benefits, it doesn’t sit level in the rear-facing position and has mixed reviews on durability. Still, it’s among the best budget-friendly options, selling for below $100.
If you’ve considered buying the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1, there’s more than meets the eye. NHTSA’s car seat recommendations emphasize that the right car seat for every time your child is in the car largely depends on your child’s age and size.
Cosco has been my go-to brand for baby strollers, but I decided to try their Easy Elite 3-in-1 convertible car seat for my two kids. Unfortunately, except for the incredibly affordable price point, there are not many outstanding features of this car seat compared to other popular options on the market that I’ve used.
In the rest of this article, I will walk you through the key features of the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 car seat, its specifications, price comparisons, and pros and cons. As a bonus, I have reviewed worthy alternatives to the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 to help streamline your options to the best picks for your budget.
Key features of Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1
The Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 is really the same as other car seats as far as features go. The removable cup holder is the only outstanding benefit, as it creates more space for another car seat if you have multiple children, as I do.
This goes to say that, in terms of features, the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 doesn’t really stand out, but it’s a quick fix that’ll keep your child safe and comfortable. Here’s how
- Reclining orientations: The rear-facing and forward-facing car seats can hold children within a 5 to 40-pound and 22 and 50 pounds weight range, respectively. In comparison, belt-positioning is available for weights between 40 and 80 pounds.
- Adjustable harness: Easy Elite’s 5-point harness is available for rear and forward-facing use. It also has a movable headrest that easily adjusts up or down for quick adjustments. The smooth mechanism and several settings are a plus.
- Removable cup holder: The Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 features a removable cup holder that makes keeping a sippy handy much easier.
- Padded Headrest: Car rides are much more enjoyable for kids in this car seat, thanks to the plushy and well-padded sides of the headrest.
- Padding: The car seat has a body pillow that keeps small babies safe and comfortable. It doubles as an extra support in rear-facing mode.
- Washing machine friendly: The seat padding is designed to be machine washable for easy care.
- Exceeds federal safety standards: The Easy Elite convertible car seat ticks all safety boxes. A sticker on the left-hand side, close to the FAA approval notice, shows a helpful image of an airplane.
Specifications of Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1
|Rear-facing weight limit||5 – 40 pounds|
|Forward-facing weight limit||22 – 50 pounds|
|Rear-facing height range||19 – 40″|
|Forward-facing height range:||Up to a hair inch from 45″|
|High back booster weight limit||40 – 80 pounds|
|High back booster height range||up to 57″|
|Lower anchor weight limit||40 pounds|
|Lowest harness position||10.5”|
|Highest harness position||16.75″|
Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 Price
The Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 costs $100 on the official Cosco website. You also get it for the same price across major retail websites (Amazon, Walmart, etc.)
Considering the low price point compared to most other alternatives, the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 is perfect for families with multiple children who still need car seats or boosters at the same time.
It doesn’t have the best features and may not be a solid option if you’re interested in high-end car seat quality for your child. But if you’re on a budget and can’t get your hands on anything else, this quick fix will keep your child safe and comfortable.
I’ve tested close to a dozen all-in-one convertible car seats—most of them from different baby care brands—and some didn’t work with my children.
Having used the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 Convertible Car Seat for seven months, it is ripe to say I’m quite impressed—not necessarily in terms of features, but how it measures up despite the low price point.
The Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 Convertible Car Seat isn’t much different from other convertible car seats in weight. It accommodates children from 5 to 80 pounds, which is not up to par when compared to many alternatives on the market. But it does a pretty good job from infancy until your child is ready for a belt-positioning booster.
The installation process wasn’t a hassle, thanks to the manual provided inside the kickstand. After combing scores of reviews, I realized the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 could sometimes be hard to install quickly and securely. But the manual is available for you.
The area I frown at is that you need to rethread the harness straps as your child grows, so you need to remove the car seat each time and the crotch strap too, which is easier said than done.
Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 Pros and Cons
There’s no perfect product out there. Like many car seats, the Easy Elite 3-in-1 has good and bad points. But after combing through threads of reviews on major baby car forums, I observed that the positive reviews of Easy Elite 3-in-1 outweigh the negative comments. So before you get this product, keep the following pros and cons in mind:
What I liked:
- Excellent price point
- Soft padding for comfort
- Easy to use in the front-facing car seat and booster options
- Compact/ can fit three across a standard bench seat
- Bilingual instructions with photos and tips
- Extra pillow for comfort
- Extended use so can be passed down to younger children
- Machine washable and dryable padding
What I did not like:
- Not as durable as advertised
- Difficult to use and adjust in the rear-facing car seat option
- Does not sit level in the rear-facing position
- Moves around in the rear-facing option
- Not enough padding on the headrest
Key Safety Details
- Rear-facing safety usage: Cosco recommends children remain rear-facing for the entire first year, and this adjustable, reclining seat makes that possible while keeping your little one comfortable.
- Airplane: The Easy Elite is allowed on airplanes in harness mode only but may not fit well in rear-facing mode, especially for children under 22 pounds
- With a height range of 19 to 52 inches, moving up according to how the car seat or booster is used, this car seat will keep your little one safe and secure in the case of an accident.
- Expiration date: The Easy Elite has a ten-year expiration date from the time of manufacturing. The Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 safety rating exceeds all standards so you can use this car seat for years.
Though some versions of car seats by Costco have had limited recalls, the Easy Elite 3-in-1 has no current recalls on record that can be found. If the car seat and booster version are correctly installed, and the child falls within the correct height and weight range, this car seat is a safe option.
Comparing Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 with Worthy Alternatives
If, after considering the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1, you have a change of mind and are willing to shell out a bit more cash for better options, I strongly recommend you look into these two models:
- Graco 4ever All-in-One
- Safety 1st Grow and Go 3-in-1
Graco 4ever All-in-One vs. Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1
The Graco 4Ever All-in-One car seat offers superior safety features, durability, and ease of use.
While the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 car seat is more affordable, it lacks the same level of comfort and convenience. Ultimately, the Graco 4ever stands tall for families looking for a long-term investment in their child’s safety.
- Both car seats can be converted from rear-facing infant car seats to forward-facing car seats and booster seats.
- Both are designed to be easy to install and adjust for a secure and comfortable fit
- Both have multiple recline positions for maximum comfort
- Price: The Graco 4ever All-in-One car seat is generally more expensive than the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 car seat.
- Weight and Size: The Graco 4ever All-in-One car seat is larger and heavier than the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 car seat, making it more challenging to move between vehicles.
- Comfort and Convenience: The Graco 4ever All-in-One car seat offers additional padding and cushioning for maximum comfort and a built-in cup holder and storage compartments, which are unavailable on the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 car seat.
Safety 1st Grow and Go 3-in-1 vs. Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1
Both the Safety 1st Grow and Go 3-in-1 and Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 offer similar features and price points. However, the Safety 1st model has better crash test ratings and higher weight limits, making it a safer and more versatile choice for growing children.
- Both the Safety 1st Grow and Go 3-in-1 and the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 are convertible car seats that you can use in rear-facing, forward-facing, and booster modes.
- They both feature adjustable headrests and harness heights to grow with your child and have removable, machine-washable covers for easy cleaning.
- Safety 1st Grow and Go 3-in-1 has additional padding and a better headrest, providing more comfort for children during long rides.
- Safety 1st Grow and Go 3-in-1 has higher weight limits, accommodating children up to 100 pounds, while Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 can only hold up to 80 pounds.
- Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 is smaller and easier to install, making it a better choice for smaller cars and families who frequently switch vehicles.
|Product name||Price||Distinctive perks|
|Weight limit (Rear-facing)||Weight limit (forward-facing)|
|Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1||$100|
|Affordable and fits children of different sizes and ages||Sometimes challenging to install it correctly||5 – 40 pounds||22 to 50 pounds|
|Graco 4ever All-in-One||$300 – $350||Weight limit up to 120 pounds and extended versatility||The bulky size makes it challenging to fit into smaller vehicles||4 – 40 pounds||22 – 65 pounds|
|Safety 1st Grow and Go 3-in-1||$100 – $159||QuickFit Harness system for easy adjustment (both harness and headrest||The relatively Lower weight limit for rear-facing use||5 – 40 pounds||22 – 65 pounds|
The Bottom Line
The Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 Convertible Car Seat is an affordable and adaptable option for your child’s growth. Moreover, it features a prolonged expiration date, ensuring it can be used as your child transitions from one stage to the next.
While customer feedback is mixed, it is common for car seats, as parents have varying opinions on the features they value.
The car seat’s easy-to-clean padding and built-in cup holder offer both comfort and convenience, enabling your child to enjoy snacks while on the go without leaving any lingering stains.
Hence, the Cosco Easy Elite is a secure and cost-effective choice for your family. But if you’re willing to spend a little more, there are better options.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I install Cosco Easy Elite 3 in 1?
When installing a Cosco car seat, place children in the back or center seat whenever possible. Next, thread the lower anchor belt through the forward-facing belt path, attach the hooks, and pull the belt to tighten. You may use the vehicle seat belt if anchors are unavailable on older vehicles.
How do you adjust a Cosco convertible car seat?
To raise or lower the seat into a new position using the Cosco convertible car seat, pull the bar in the back out, adjust it to the desired position, and then push it back in.
Is the Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 car seat safe?
The Cosco car seat is safe based on national standards. However, as with any car seat, check with your doctor to ensure it is appropriate for your child’s height and weight.
How long are Cosco Easy Elite 3-in-1 seats good for?
According to Cosco, the Easy Elite 3-in-1 will last for ten years. However, some user reviews point out that the model holds up for six years, after which it begins to deteriorate in performance and features.