01 of 08
Recommended Infant Car Seats for 2016
Infant car seats face the rear of the vehicle only and are suitable for newborns and young babies. Based on my experiences as a child passenger safety technician, these infant car seats are among the easiest to install in many vehicles, hold up well over time and are easy to adjust to fit your growing baby. All of these infant car seats have passed U.S. government crash test standards. If you read the instruction book and take care to use the car seat properly every time, these infant car seats... are all safe for your baby. Need help figuring out which features you need? Take a look at this infant car seat buying guide for more information.
Heather Corley is a nationally certified Child Passenger Safety Technician-Instructor.Continue to 2 of 8 below.
02 of 08
Chicco KeyFit 30 Infant Car Seat
The Chicco Key Fit is incredibly easy to install in many vehicles, which can help make it a safer choice since proper installation is key to safety.The Key Fit 30 can be used for babies up to 30 lbs., so you should get a longer useful life out of it. Key Fit has liquid leveling indicators, an easy to find belt-routing area and a secure locking system that makes it easy to get a tight fit without LATCH. The center-pull LATCH adjuster makes LATCH installations incredibly easy. Chicco Key Fit is... also fairly lightweight, which is nice if you intend to carry it outside the car a lot
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03 of 08
Graco SnugRide Click Connect 35 Infant Car Seat
Graco has updated the very popular SnugRide car seat with the SnugRide Click Connect 35, which, as you might guess, has a 35 lb weight limit. It can be used from 4 pounds for newborns, too. It's also a little taller in the shell to accommodate babies up to 32 inches. The base angle can be changed easily with a dial, and there are built-in seat belt lock-offs to help you get the installation just right. Parents also love that there are loads of patterns and colors to choose from, and that... these car seats can be used as a travel system with many different strollers. The Click Connect system allows you to snap the car seat onto any Graco Click Connect stroller, without using any extra straps or locks.
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04 of 08
Safety 1st onBoard Air 35 Infant Car Seat
The stand-out feature of this infant car seat is the side-impact crash protection. The air-filled sections that line the car seat act like a stunt man's landing pad in a crash - releasing air at a controlled pace to minimize the forces to your baby. I also love that this car seat is rated from 4 to 35 lbs. It gives a good fit to smaller babies, including some preemies, but also has plenty of space as baby grows. There's a customizable padded insert, too, so you can add padding where baby... needs it for the right fit. The Air+ name is because this car seat has the air-filled sides plus a special hexagonal foam for additional protection. About $170.
The Air models (without the +) are also excellent car seats, they just don't have the extra padding.Continue to 5 of 8 below.
05 of 08
Urbini Petal Infant Car Seat
The Urbini Petal has built-in lock-offs in the base, deep side walls with EPS foam for side-impact protection, and a padded infant insert. Best of all, it costs much less than other infant car seats with a front-adjust harness, which is the only type I recommend. You can use the Petal from 4 pounds all the way to 35 pounds, and it can be used with some Urbini strollers as a travel system. This is my top pick for a budget infant car seat!
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06 of 08
Nuna Pipa Infant Car Seat
The Nuna Pipa is one of few infant car seats available in the US with a foot prop. This unique feature reduces the amount of movement of the car seat during a crash. Less movement often means less chance of injury. The Pipa also has a rigid LATCH system, so to install with LATCH, you just push the car seat base against the vehicle's anchors until they lock. That's it. No further tightening is necessary. I love how easy it is to adjust the harness settings and tightness on this car seat.... From 4 pounds to 32 pounds.
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07 of 08
UPPAbaby Mesa Infant Car Seat
The Mesa infant car seat from UPPAbaby can be used for babies who weigh 4 pounds up to 35 pounds. I like the LATCH installation system on this car seat - you push a button on each side to release the LATCH belts, push the premium push-button connectors onto the vehicle's anchors, and then push down on the base to engage the built-in retractor on the base. The LATCH belts are tightened by the locking mechanism, and there's a green indicator to let you know you did it right. There's... also a seat belt lock-off in the base, and a no-rethread harness. The headrest also adjusts up and down so your baby always has the best crash protection. You can use this car seat along with UPPAbaby strollers to create a travel system.
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08 of 08
Baby Trend Flex Loc Infant Car Seat
The Flex-Loc car seat is particularly easy to install if your vehicle has LATCH anchors. The connectors on the car seat base are perfectly designed to make it easy to secure the base, while built-in level indicators help you be sure the car seat is installed at the proper angle. The four base height positions make it easier to install without using towels or pool noodles for proper recline. If you don't want to take the harness straps out of a car seat to change the harness height, the Flex... Loc is the car seat for you. All you have to do is turn a knob to change the harness height. The harness tightness is also very easy to adjust on the Flex Loc infant seat. From 5 pounds to 30 pounds.