When I found out I was pregnant with my first baby, I spent hours, days, and weeks searching each piece of baby gear we would be using with her. Everything had to have the highest ratings in safety, as well as user-friendly and comfortable. Since I had a little experience with my niece’s infant car seat, I knew what I didn’t want in a car seat- I needed something that was easy to carry (lightweight and a good grip bar) as well as a base that was easy to use with latch. If you have tried various latch styles, then you know there are some clip-type latches that are hard to compress to get in and out of the car. Who needs that? So, when I was search for car seats, they had to be easy in and easy out!
I took a trip to my local Buy Buy Baby which was equipped with a latch test model. My hubby and I were able to try each base in their makeshift car, until we found a few we liked. The two easiest seats to put in were then researched until I felt I could research no more, and found the Chicco KeyFit 30 to be the best seat for us. It was lightweight (only 8 pounds) and considered to be one of the safest infant car seats. It came with newborn inserts to keep baby safe and snug, and it was the seat that we ultimately used with both of our little girls. I was very comfortable in my decision to purchase this seat, and highly recommend it to anyone who asks my advice when it comes to infant car seats. (Just FYI- I was NOT compensated in any way to share this information. This is MY personal experience with Chicco and I really love the KeyFit 30!)
I just found out that Chicco now makes a Convertible Car Seat which is made to take your baby into the next stage of car seats. I was a little bummed when both my girls outgrew their Chicco KeyFit Infant car seat because the base of the car seat would tell me if the seat was in properly. Now that the Chicco NextFit is available, I can have the features I loved in the infant car seat, in a convertible car seat.
The best part about the Chicco NextFit is that it is the ONLY car seat you will need for your baby, from birth (assuming your baby is at least 5 pounds) up to 65 pounds. The seat can be rear facing to 40 pounds, so if you would like to extend rear facing, you can! My toddler is almost 4 and still isn’t near 40 pounds. She would easily fit in the seat had we decided to extend rear facing. Since my infant will most likely remain in the rear facing position until she is 2, this would be an ideal seat for her.
Check out this informational video for the Chicco NextFit:
You can hop into your local baby store, such as Babies R Us, Target, Buy Buy Baby, and other retailers to check out the Chicco NextFit, which retails at $299.
Five Helpful Hints from Julie Prom,
Car Seat Safety Advocatefor Chicco
Rear-facing is safest. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommend rear-facing as long as possible. Parents should keep child rear-facing until at least 2 years old, longer if the car safety seat weight and height limit allows. Young children are fragile and are best protected in a rear-facing car seat. To ensure a child can stay rear-facing as long as possible, purchase a convertible seat when your baby outgrows the infant seat.
Most children younger than 5-years old are not mature enough to sit without a full harness. Keep your child in a forward-facing car seat with a harness until at least 5 or 6 years old.
Most common mistakes can be avoided by simply following manufacturers’ instructions. All car seats must meet stringent Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards to be sold in the U.S. It is when they are not used correctly that makes them unsafe. Always read and follow the instructions for the safety seat. Also, read the vehicle owner’s manual section on child restraints.
Always buckle your baby into the safety seat first, and then cover the baby with blankets. Avoid bulky clothing and add-on products such as car seat buntings. This can interfere with proper harness fit and crash performance of the seat. A good trick for older children is to buckle them in without their jacket and then put it back on them backwards over the harness. Not only do these techniques ensure proper harness fit, but also avoids overheating by allowing the baby to be easily uncovered or the child to take his jacket off once the car gets warmer.
Always use the top tether when installing a forward-facing car seat. The tether reduces movement of a car seat in a crash and helps to achieve a tight installation.
I wrote this review while participating in a campaign for Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Chicco and I received a promotional item to thank me for my participation.