Car Seat Rating Sources
Total of 28 Sources
For an explanation of how we rank reviews, see our ratings criteria page.
Convertible Car Seat Overview, Ratings, and Recommended
by Editors of ConsumerReports.org
Our AssessmentConsumerReports.org tops our chart because it's the only reviewing organization that crash-tests car seats in a laboratory. Following a model similar to government crash tests, reviewers examine 27 convertible car seats for crash safety, and then they analyze ease of use and installation. ConsumerReports.org pays special attention to safety standards regarding tether use and emphasizes correctly sized car seats for a baby's height and weight. They rate 17 high-capacity models and 10 that max out at 40 pounds.
Convertible and Forward-facing-Only Car Seats
by Denise and Alan Fields
Our AssessmentWith an emphasis on value, safety and durability, this book provides useful shopping tips and recommendations on dozens of baby products. While car seats aren't independently crash tested, the authors perform some hands-on testing, and parent, manufacturer and retailer interviews are also conducted. Write-ups are very thorough, including data regarding manufacturers' recall history. Updates to the book are posted online.
Convertible Car Seat Reviews
Our AssessmentThis site provides five tips for buying a convertible car seat as well as comprehensive car seat reviews. They are based on car seat technicians' reports that are based on handling of these convertible car seats, parents' and caregivers' reviews and experiences using these products, third party reviewers like ConsumerReports.org and car seat manufacturers. Reviews focus on safety, comfort, ease of strap adjustments, ease of installation and pros and cons, with input from customer reviews, detailed photos and advice about how to find the best price. In addition to individual product reviews, this blog includes product comparisons among different car seat makes.
Child Safety Seat Ease of Use Ratings
by Editors of National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
Our AssessmentThe NHTSA tests child car seats for ease of use. Experts test 40 seats both front- and rear-facing and rate the seats' labels, instructions, installation features and how easy it is to secure the child, culminating in an overall ease-of-use rating from 1 to 5 stars. Only The First Years True Fit gets a 5-star overall rating for both forward- and rear-facing installations. This is helpful information, but not as comprehensive as ConsumerReports.org's crash testing and not as insightful as reportage in "Baby Bargains."
American Academy of Pediatrics Policy Statement on Child Passenger Safety
by Dennis R. Durban, MD, MSCE, Committee on Injury, Violence, and Poison Prevention
Our AssessmentThis site contains a review of the updated guidelines for child passenger safety for children from birth through adolescence. It does not discuss car seats specifically by model or brand, but it is a useful guide to height and weight recommendations.
Recommended Car seats
by Editors of CarSeatBog.com
Our AssessmentCarSeatBlog.com bills itself as "the alternative media outlet for all things child passenger safety." Led by three primary editors with a handful of regular contributors, CarseatBlog.com writers describe themselves as "moms and dads with over 3 decades of combined experience with young children and safety seats." Reviews here are among the most detailed we've seen -- and also perhaps the most opinionated. In several posts, the bloggers take ConsumerReports.org's car seat ratings to task for their lack of detail and transparency. It's worth noting that unlike ConsumerReports.org, CarseatBlog.com doesn't actually crash-test its seats. The writers also admit that they don't publish negative reviews.
Best Convertible Car Seat Reviews
by Editors of Good Housekeeping
Our AssessmentThe matter of fact reviews conducted by Good Housekeeping include pros and cons listings and product specifications.
Top 8 Convertible Car Seats
by Heather Corley
Our AssessmentHeather Corley, About.com's guide to baby products, names eight convertible car seats that she says stand out "based on my experiences as a child passenger safety technician, as well as the experiences of other techs." Corley doesn't say which experts she consulted, however. (Note: ConsumerSearch is owned by About.com, but the two don't share an editorial affiliation.)
Best Car Seats 2011
by Editors of Babble.com
Our AssessmentBabble.com breaks its recommendations down into categories that include Best Infant to Preschool Car Seat and "best if money is no object." Launched in December 2006, Babble.com has a National Magazine Award nomination for Best Overall Website (opposite Slate.com) and a Folio magazine award for Best Online Magazine (beating out everyone but Time.com). Time magazine named it one of the Top 50 websites of 2010. Babble.com was acquired by The Walt Disney Company in November 2011.
The Product: Next Generation Convertible Car Seat
by Editors of BobbysBest.com
Our AssessmentFounder Robert Glazer markets BobbysBest.com as a review site with a personal touch. Although we don't see any testing details, he says all are "based on real-life experiences." It is worth noting that Britax USA furnished Glazer with the Britax Boulevard 70 for the review.
by Editor Reviews
Our AssessmentBabyGizmo.com provides detailed product reviews that include 1 to 5 scaled ratings and best and worst features descriptions.
Best Car Seats for Babies and Toddlers
Our AssessmentThis roundup includes infant seats, convertible car seats and booster seats. The very brief reviews list some safety features and weight ratings.
Convertible Car Seats
by Contributors to Amazon.com
Our AssessmentIt's tricky finding reviews at Amazon.com because when a manufacturer introduces new fabrics, models or other configurations, reviews for the older styles are often lost, even if the product hasn't changed functionally. Still, with a little more clicking and by sorting the lists by most popular and most highly reviewed, you can get a sense of the top sellers and most positive reviews. from Amazon.com users. All seats in this report have user ratings of 4.5 or above with more than 50 reviews.
Convertible Car Seat Reviews
by Contributors to Viewpoints.com
Our AssessmentViewpoints.com has a growing number of baby gear user reviews, and there's good coverage of some of the top convertible car seats. Britax seats do well here. The Marathon leads with a near-perfect score in more than 782 entries; the Britax Roundabout rates almost as highly with 277 reviews.
Car Seat Reviews
by Contributors to Buzzillions.com
Our AssessmentBuzzillions.com has an interesting approach to gathering user reviews: Rather than providing incentives for contributors, it compiles reviews from external sources like BabiesRUs.com and Diapers.com. Searching by most reviewed, you can get a better sense of overall ratings. All products are rated at 4 out of 5 or above with more than 150 reviews.
2012 About.com Readers' Choice Awards - Best Convertible Car Seat Finalists
Our AssessmentAbout.com's Readers' Choice awardees were nominated by readers and then voted on by readers between Feb. 22 and March 21, 2012. The category was open to any currently available convertible car seat. Winners were announced on March 30.
Convertible Car Seat Reviews
by Contributors to BabiesRUS.com
Our AssessmentAs one of the largest retailers of all things baby, Babies "R" Us provides a clear indication of what seats are the most popular, and its website provides an easy to sort means of discovering the top rated seats. User reviews offer a glimpse into whether a seat is a good fit for some cars.
Convertible Car Seat Reviews
by Contributors to target.com
Our AssessmentLike Babies "R" Us, Target is a popular destination for purchasing baby products. Their web site provides a clear indication of what seats are the most popular and an easy to sort means of discovering the top rated seats. One hundred and seventeen seats are offered, but there isn't a large number of user reviews here, and the ones that are here are mostly positive.
Our AssessmentCreated for expecting and new parents, ISIS is a retail website that also lists community-based centers that provide education, products and support. Car seat reviews are short, highly positive and limited in number.
How to Buy a Convertible Car Seat
Our AssessmentBaby Center is an interactive parenting network that provides expecting, new, and current parents with access to up to date useful information. Created by the editors, the Baby Center "How to Buy a Convertible Car Seat" article provides basic information about the seats, what to look for when buying them and what they're going to cost.
Rear-Facing Car Seats Aren't Just for Babies Anymore
by Christie Haskell
Our AssessmentChristie Haskell, blogger and mom of two, breaks down the importance of keeping children in rear-facing car seats for longer, as the AAP recommends. The article includes statistics and answers common questions about the comfort and vulnerability of larger kids' legs in the rear-facing position.
60% Of Kids' Car Seats Contain At Least One Toxic Chemical
by Catharine Paddock, PhD
Our AssessmentThis article highlights the risk of toxic chemicals used in the manufacture of car seats and the potential health risks these pose for infants and young children.
Car Seat and Booster Seat Safety for Little Kids On The Way
Our AssessmentTop safety tips for properly installing and using forward-facing car seats for children are presented on this organization's site. SafeKids is a network of organizations committed to preventing unintentional injury from occurring to children ages 1 to 14 by educating families, providing safety devices to families in need and advocating for better laws that protect children and keep them safe.
Safety Tips: Ten Tips to Keep Your Child Safe
Our AssessmentThe NHTSA (National Highway and Transportation Safety Association) provides car safety tips as well as information about installing and buying car seats.
Child Safety Seat Recalls
Our AssessmentThis site includes a handy list of current car seat recalls listed by manufacturer. No current recalls are for any of the car seat models recommended in our report.
Car Seats: Information for Families 2012
by Wendy Ray
Our AssessmentThis website provides an informational breakdown that covers types of car seats, size/age guidelines, installation guidelines and tips and recalls. Recommendations are based on AAP with reference links to NHTSA, SeatCheck and National Child Passenger Safety Certified Technicians.
Car Seats: Product Listing for 2012
Our AssessmentThis site has a listing of currently available car seats that meet Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards as of the publication date, with weight ratings in forward and rear-facing positions and with approximate prices.
Convertible Car Seats
by Contributors to Diapers.com
Our AssessmentDiapers.com is an online store that allows owners to write reviews of products they purchase. Diapers.com doesn't allow you to sort products by average consumer rating, but sorting by bestselling reveals a predominance of Britax convertible car seats, all of which garner ratings from 4 to 5 out of 5. The RXT and Diono seats also receive 4 to 5 out of 5 ratings.