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Car Seat Buying Guide

Jon Whittle

Forward-facing Seats

For kids who’ve reached the height and weight limits for rear-facing, look for a forward-facing seat with a five-point harness. (The AAP recommends using a harness at least until age 4.) In addition to convertibles and 3-in-1s, you may also choose:


Toddler seats

Pros: These seats have weight ranges between 40 and 80 pounds (so you’ll be able to use it for a good stretch).

Cons: Toddler seats are single-purpose—so when it’s time for your child to move up to a belt-positioning booster, you’ll have to make another purchase.


Combination seats

Pros: You get a forward-facing seat with a harness (for kids 40 to 80 pounds) and a belt-positioning booster (for kids up to 100 pounds) in one.

Cons: Not much!