Best Convertible Toddler Car Seat
The three kids were in the back when it happened… She tried avoiding the cars, so the SUV started rolling over…
Accidents happen when you least expect them.
There’s no way to know when one will occur. The only thing for you to do is be prepared as best as possible. For this, you need the best protection for your toddler child.
This all seems so easy in theory. But when you have to go through so many car seats, you will feel the magnitude of the task.
This is the reason why I’ve created the Best Convertible Toddler Car Seat article. By reading it, you will be able to save time. You will learn how to differentiate between the ones that are good and which are not the right fit.
Also, by getting to the end, you will most likely find the one that fits you the best. The toddler milestone is an important one. Slowly but surely, the needs and wants of your little ones start to appear. You will have to take that into the count as well.
Now I’ve mentioned an accident above. I haven’t forgotten about it. Stick with me for a bit, and you will know exactly what happened. Not only that, but I will also share with you which car seat was tested and how well it has performed.
Now let’s get this best article started.
#1 Britax Advocate – The Best Convertible Toddler Car Seat
This incident happened with my cousin. She was driving on the highway with three kids in the back. Little did she know that there was an accident upfront.
When she noticed the standing queue of cars, it was too late. The only thing she managed to do is to slam down hard on the brakes and avoid the other cars. Coming to a dead stop with an SUV going 70 mpg is hard to do.
She lost control, and the SUV started rolling. According to eyewitnesses, it rolled over at least five times. Their dog Coco was ejected from the car. Finally, the car came to a rest on the side of the road.
It was an ugly crash. Luckily the kids didn’t get hurt. There were only minor cuts and bruises, mostly for phones and tablets, which flew all over the place. They walked away from the accident, shaken up but in good health. Even their dog got lucky. Coco had no injuries what so ever.
Britax Advocate won The Best Convertible Toddler Car Seat award. There’s no better company at making convertible car seats than Britax. They have a full line of car seats, which are only convertibles. It wasn’t easy to pick the best one for you.
Eventually, the winner turned out to be the Britax Advocate.
As you can see, it’s a safe car seat. Three lives were protected in that crash. This car seat comes with the Clicktight install. This makes the mounting so easy. All you have to do is pop the seat open feed through the belt and close it down. You’re done.
Being a convertible, it can be used in rear-facing mode from 5 to 40 pounds. That’s some decent extended rear-facing. As you know, this provides the best protection for kids.
That accident sold me on the Britax Advocate. That’s why it’s the Best Convertible Toddler Car Seat.
It’s a fortress which provides both front-facing and rear-facing mode
According to a policeman parent, it’s absolutely the best
It’s easy to understand thanks to the well-assembled manual
It’s heavy once you have installed you won’t move from the car
ARB looks like an afterthought a bit flimsy
#2 Diono Radian 3RXT All-In-One – Best Convertible Car Seat For Travel
This incident happened with some close friends of mine.
The father took his son out for a regular supply run. Everything was the same boring routine. Things changed for the worse at that faithful intersection. Another driver slammed into them from the side.
The collision happened on the same side, where the little boy was sitting. The crash was deafening. Glass shards were flying everywhere. Metal has twisted under the big pressure. Their van’s front was destroyed.
Luckily the little boy wasn’t hurt. He was a bit scared, but he wasn’t harmed during the accident.
The Diono Radian 3RXT is a great choice for toddlers. First of all, it stands out from the rest. Also, there are many colors to choose from, which will bring out your little one’s personality.
Toddlers, after a while, will want what big kids or adults have. The Diono Radian 3RXT would be a good answer to this craving.
It’s not a light car seat, and yet it’s suitable for travel. It’s FAA approved, and it’s foldable.
The main reason why I recommend it for travel is that it’s super comfortable and beats all the expensive crappy stuff that rentals can offer. Plus, it has a narrow profile. The width is just 16.9” wide.
If you’re traveling to Europe in some countries, you have to keep your little one in rear-facing mode until their 4th birthday. The Diono Radian 3RXT allows extended rear-facing up to 45 pounds, which is very close.
Finally, a car seat where the baby isn’t slouching or sliding down
It’s lightweight and easy to move around
It’s soft and padded plus it comes with side impact protection
The gray fabric is not that stain friendly
You can’t remove the fabric the only solution is spot cleaning
#3 Graco Extend2fit – Best Convertible Toddler Car Seat For Extended Rear Facing
This happened with some friends of mine. They were heading home from the grandparent’s home. Their 11-month old was fast asleep in the back. When all of a sudden, a drunk driver slammed into them head-on.
To make things worse, he was speeding. The crash started with a loud bang as metal screeched and bent under pressure. The airbags exploded, protecting the parents. The windshield cracked and turned into a spider’s web.
It wasn’t over yet. The crash had so much force their car did a 180 and spun across two lanes. Finally, it stopped in the embankment. The parents got a few cuts and bruises.
Their little one wasn’t hurt in the accident. He was scared and cried, but there wasn’t a scratch on him.
As you know, rear-facing is the safest position for kids. The Graco did a great job with this car seat. It does not just offer extended rear-facing up to 50 pounds (while others tap out at 40 pounds), but it has leg support as well. To offer the most comfort possible, there’s an adjustable leg rest.
The graco extend2fit being a convertible means that you can use it from infancy up to 65 pounds. As a matter of fact, you will be able to take your little one home from the hospital since the lowest weight limit is set to 4 pounds.
This is why the Graco Extend2Fit won the best-extended rear-facing convertible award.
It’s one of the easiest to install can be done in less than 5 minutes
There’s no manual rethreading of the straps ever
The fabric is easy to wash even after a vomiting incident
The release button is hidden, and if you have big hands it’s hard to reach
You need to watch videos to put the fabric back into place
Top related article: Most comfortable car seat for 5 year olds
#4 Chicco Fit4 All-In-One – Best Coolest Looking Convertible Car Seat
The Chicco Fit4 is not just any other convertible car seat. It has four functions packed into one cool seat. After a certain time, kids always want what big kids have.
The Chicco Fit4 has a different design than all the other convertibles on the market. It has a big kid look s so that kids will love it instantly.
This car seat can be mounted in rear-facing, harness mode, and booster mode. Essentially this is the first and last car seat that you will ever need. It caters to infants of just 4 pounds all the way up to 100 pounds.
Besides looking cool, this car seat is easy to install. The thing is, as you upgrade with a car seat, the install difficulty gets upgraded as well. Chicco did an amazing job with this car seat. The installation is brain dead simple. After you have connected the latch system, you pull on those two tails. There’s one number #1, and you pull it up, and there’s #2 which you pull down. It’s that simple, and you’re done.
Toddlers are known for accidents and messes. So you can rest assured that the cover can be easily removed and machine washed. So no matter the mess, it will be good as new after a wash.
There’s no contest. The Chicco Fit4 all in one is the coolest car seat that you can get for a toddler.
This car seat is the first and the last one you will have to buy, a real money saver in the long run
Thanks to the QR codes on the side you get access to instant help through videos
Kids love it because it’s so comfortable
It takes up a lot of space the front might suffer
It’s not cheap you will need a budget
#5 Graco 4Ever DLX All-In-One – Best Affordable Convertible Toddler Car Seat
“Mommy, what was that Big Bang?”
This incident happened with my sister in law. She was taking her 4-year old daughter home. It was the usual commute. Then all of a sudden, an SUV smashed into them head-on.
The impact was loud. The airbags exploded, protecting the mother. The front of the car twisted and bent to an unnatural angle. It wasn’t over yet.
There was so much energy during the crash that the car spun out to oncoming traffic, and all their tires exploded.
When everything went quiet, then the little girl asked what has happened. She was the lucky one. There wasn’t a scratch on her. Her mother wasn’t that lucky. She had a broken nose and a few cuts, so she ended up in the hospital. My niece was going to kindergarten the next day.
If nothing else, this real crash test has convinced you that this car seat is safe. It has a steel frame, so your little one is protected no matter what. It comes with the Graco ProtectPlus safety. This means your child is safe from the rear, front, side, and even rollover accidents.
Compared to all other car seats, you’re getting a lot of features at a bargain price. For example, you can do extended rear-facing up to 40 pounds. This is good for parents who value the protection of what this mode offers.
Since we’re talking about toddlers, there are fixed cup holders so they can be turned into projectiles. One can be used for drinks and the second one for toys.
The price is unbeatable. That’s why the Graco 4Ever got on this list.
It’s easy to install might be the easiest of them all
No more rethreading the straps ever
The fabric removal is super-fast
The straps tangle up too fast, and it’s a pain to undo them with a protesting child
The cup holders fall off way too easily.
You may also want to read: Top booster seats that fit 3 across reviews
It was a long article, wasn’t it? I love to over-deliver in these posts. I was thinking about how I can help you best. Then it dawns on me that you will be looking for another car seat maybe in the future. So a buyer’s guide will be a great addition.
Before we can get to that, I must share with you two important tips.
You need to install the car seat in the right place. The safest place for your child is in the middle. In reality, that’s not a good option for many parents. So here’s the second safest option, which is behind the driver.
My second important tip is about the install. If you have doubts, let an expert look at it. A poorly installed car seat can do more harm than good. You can reach out to a licensed professional or go online because amazon is offering installation for a fee.
Let’s get the buyer’s guide started.
This is the most important item on the list. Now all car seats are safe. No matter if you choose a cheap or an expensive one. The only difference is that certain brands offer more protection than others.
My best advice is to get the most protection that you can afford. You can go wrong with that.
This is my favorite place, where I can save money. The secret is to plan ahead. I prefer all in one car seat because you pay more money upfront, but they are lifers. There are no more upgrades. Plus, it saves a lot of time that I don’t need to learn another install technique.
This is the real sticking point for many parents. Well, in recent years, brands did an outstanding job getting this fixed. Now many car seats are so easy to install that you can’t believe it.
This is the last item on my list. Since we’re dealing with kids, accidents and spills will be all too common. So you have to clean after them. Stick with car seats where the cover is easily removable and machine washable.
This would be my handy-dandy buyer’s guide.
We have reached the end of the Best Convertible Toddler Car Seat. I hope you have learned a lot from this piece. You probably have some thinking to do.
By now you should have a good idea which car seat from above is the right fit. Now I have checked the stocks, and sadly they are running low, so if you want it, you need to move fast.
I would love to hear about your experiences. You can share them below.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ):
What is the best toddler car seat?
The best toddler car seat is the Britax Advocate Clicktight convertible car seat.
What is the safest convertible car seat 2020?
The safest convertible car seat for 2020 is the Britax Advocate Clicktight convertible car seat.
What is the most comfortable convertible car seat?
The most comfortable convertible car seat is the Maxi Cosi Pria 85.
Which car seats didn’t make on the best toddler convertible car seats list?
These convertible car seats didn’t make it: Graco 4ever all-in-one car seat, nuna rava infant car seat, chicco nextfit booster seat, maxi-cosi pria 85 front-facing car seat, clek fllo convertible car seat, Britax boulevard clicktight convertible car seat, evenflo tribute, Britax marathon clicktight convertible car seat, safety 1st grow and go convertible car seat. I have removed booster seats from my list.
Which best convertible car seats for toddlers will fit three car seats across for small cars?
Fit three across is not hard if you have the best convertible car seats by your side even if you have a small car. The Diono Radian 3RXT high-back booster is narrow enough to fit. When you need to fit three across in smaller cars stick with slim designs for any years old. If you are looking for small car seats take a look at the best convertible car seat for small cars post.
What are the height and weight limits for these best toddler seat?
The weight limit for front-facing car seats with no-rethread harness system is 65 pounds. The lower limit for the harness system is 22 pounds. The weight range for forward-facing position is 22 to 65 pounds. The upper limit for forward facing booster seat is 100 pounds and for the backless booster seat it’s 120 pounds. The lower limit for rear-facing position is 5 pounds. The upper limit for rear-facing seat is 40 pounds (40 lbs). Now if you go with the Extend2Fit the rear-facing position upper limit is 50 pounds, do use the extension panel for more comfort every time. It also features no rethread harness for tall kids. If you have a tall kid check out the best convertible car seat for tall babies post. The car seat manufacturer strides to differentiate themselves from side by side comparisons of toddler car seats. The best convertible car seat has a forward facing weight limits of 65 pounds. Also the harness straps (harness holders) work up to 65 pounds. The upper weight limimt for the forward facing high back booster seat is 120 pounds. For the rear facing position is 40 pounds.
What kind of car seat safety features can you expect from these convertible toddler seats?
With these you’re getting the very best when it comes to car seat safety features. All the car seats mentioned above have high safety standards. Here’s what you have to check out: the super easy latch system, anti-rebound bar for infant seat. Make sure the chest clip (chest clips) is below the armpit level. If properly installed you will have peace of mind as your child outgrows other car seats. These seats have been in crash test for your safety. All these best convertible car seats and forward facing high back booster seats have passed the government safety standards. The car seat’s core is of steel frame.
How do you install these convertible toddler seats?
First of all make sure you read the manual for easy installation and ease of use. With rear-facing position and forward facing you can use the lower anchors latch system or the seat belt. Also make sure you install it on the back seat. With the best car seats the latch connectors make an easy installation on the back seat. When it comes to the installation system you can pick from the latch lower anchors and tethers and of course there’s the seat belt. The seat belt is slower but the seat belt lock offs might help with the tight fit. Before you get started make sure you check the bubble levels and set the seat angle to the default position. To get it easy to install the seat also has to be adjusted according to the child weight. In forward facing rear facing mode you can adjust the multi position headrest, harness adjustments and shoulder strap positions.
What kind of features should you look with these toddler car seats?
You should check out features like these lower anchors, super easy adjustable anchors and tethers, comfy seat pad, multiple recline positions, washable seat cover. These would the best car seat features. The cup holder is great to have. The best thing if there’s a cup holder on each side. The cover should be washing machine friendly. If you have smaller child then the cover has to be washed with the washing machine to save time. Most 4 in 1 car seats like the graco 4 ever come with lower anchors and tethers
What would be a good alternative for the best convertible car seat for toddlers?
If you’re looking for forward facing and rear facing convertible car seats you just found them: chicco nextfit toddler car seats, maxi cosi budget friendly infant car seat, nuna rava infant car seats, britax boulevard clicktight high back booster, britax marathon clicktight, cosco scenera next 4 in 1 car seat, clek fllo, clek foonf convertible car seats. Many of these seats are recommended by the american academy of pediatrics and child passenger safety technician seat like: cosco scenera next toddler car seats, graco 4ever infant seats, britax marathon clicktight rear facing car seat, clek foonf forward facing car seat. You’ll need the right car seat so you’re looking at the right place.
Last Updated on December 6, 2022 by Danny Reid