The additional support plus the way a rear-facing car seat moves in a crash gives your baby the best chance of survival and less chance of injury in a crash. The simple way to estimate crash force is weight times speed. A 10-pound baby in a 30 mph crash would experience an estimated 300 pounds of force. A rear-facing car seat spreads that 300 pounds of force over a greater body area, causing less injury to the baby. The difference can be seen in a video comparing rear-facing and forward facing car seats in a crash test.
Except, when you try to install it, you discover it barely fits. The LATCH straps won’t reach the hooks in the seat. It’s impossible to get the seat angled properly so baby’s head won’t slump. And no matter how hard you try, you cannot get it strapped tightly enough, so the seat is flopping around everywhere. There’s no way you can bring baby home in a car seat that just won’t work.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) tests all car seats before they are approved to be sold in the United States. Unlike safety testing for cars, ratings on a 5-star scale are not available for comparing overall car seat safety in the event of a crash. Child car seats are basically given a pass/fail safety grading by the NHTSA; if a car seat is available for sale in 2018, then it has passed current crash safety standards.
Like all Evenflo products, this seat is manufactured in the USA. The upfront harness adjustment is a favorite feature for parents because you can tighten or loosen the harness quickly with one hand. Dual cupholders are integrated in such a way that they don’t add to the width of this seat, which is uncommon in a lot of boosters. They also have an elastic strap to accommodate larger drink cups and bottles. A removable pillow adds extra comfort for long car trips.
One of the biggest disadvantages is that this does not turn into a backless booster, which many parents expect when they get it. Instead, you get a backed booster with a harness. The seat bottom may feel less padded than others on the market. Depending on your vehicle seat and child, the recline may be lacking, so your child’s head might slump if they fall asleep.
Some parents have reported that they feel like the seat loosens more frequently than other seats, but it could be due to vehicle seat design, user error, or a wiggly child. Even if your child doesn’t move a lot, it might be a smart idea to check the seat for looseness regularly. There have been no recent recalls of this seat, however. But be sure to thoroughly inspect all parts and if anything is broken or malfunctioning, contact the seller and ask for a refund or exchange.
One of the biggest disadvantages is that this does not turn into a backless booster, which many parents expect when they get it. Instead, you get a backed booster with a harness. The seat bottom may feel less padded than others on the market. Depending on your vehicle seat and child, the recline may be lacking, so your child’s head might slump if they fall asleep.

Drawbacks: All SnugRide SnugLock models allow European beltpath routing if installing the carrier directly (without the base) using a lap/shoulder seatbelt. It’s uncommon for most parents to install the infant seat without the base but the Euro belt routing option is a nice feature to have if you travel by taxi or car service often. Unfortunately, the Euro belt routing with the SnugLock models isn’t ideal since the shoulder belt often slips too low across the back of the shell to offer much support. This isn’t a deal breaker for most parents who use the base 99% of the time but if you are in the 1% who frequently install without the base, it’s something to be aware of. You can still install the carrier directly to the vehicle with seatbelt using the standard belt routing if you’re not happy with the Euro routing. We have more details and pictures of the issue in our full review.
Some parents have reported that they feel like the seat loosens more frequently than other seats, but it could be due to vehicle seat design, user error, or a wiggly child. Even if your child doesn’t move a lot, it might be a smart idea to check the seat for looseness regularly. There have been no recent recalls of this seat, however. But be sure to thoroughly inspect all parts and if anything is broken or malfunctioning, contact the seller and ask for a refund or exchange.
The additional support plus the way a rear-facing car seat moves in a crash gives your baby the best chance of survival and less chance of injury in a crash. The simple way to estimate crash force is weight times speed. A 10-pound baby in a 30 mph crash would experience an estimated 300 pounds of force. A rear-facing car seat spreads that 300 pounds of force over a greater body area, causing less injury to the baby. The difference can be seen in a video comparing rear-facing and forward facing car seats in a crash test.
Differences Between Sonus & Stratos 65: Stratos has a higher weight limit for forward-facing and includes 5-position height-adjustable headrest with deep wings. Stratos also offers push-on LATCH connectors, removable cup holders, harness strap covers and an additional “recline stand leg” on base which makes it less likely that you would need to use a pool noodle or rolled up towel to achieve the proper rear-facing recline angle in vehicle.

Except, when you try to install it, you discover it barely fits. The LATCH straps won’t reach the hooks in the seat. It’s impossible to get the seat angled properly so baby’s head won’t slump. And no matter how hard you try, you cannot get it strapped tightly enough, so the seat is flopping around everywhere. There’s no way you can bring baby home in a car seat that just won’t work.
In sickle cell anemia, an inherited disorder, red blood cells become hard, sticky and form a C-shaped "sickle." Those sickle cells die early, which causes a constant shortage of red blood cells, extreme pain, infection and often, strokes. In 1975, a child with sickle cell disease would likely die by age 14, but medical advances have increased the current life expectancy to age 40.
All car seat models, convertible and otherwise, are subject to state laws regarding their safe use. Before car seat installation, parents and other caregivers must understand the regulations that apply to their state. What follows is by no means a comprehensive list, but it’s a great place to start. After all, nothing is more important than the health and safety of your precious cargo.

A car seat should be approved for a baby's weight. Very small babies who can sit safely in a semi-reclined position usually fit better in rear-facing–only seats. Preterm infants should be tested while still in the hospital to make sure they can sit safely in a semi-reclined position. Babies who need to lie flat during travel should ride in a car bed that meets Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 213. They should be tested while in the hospital to make sure they can lie safely in the car bed.

Like all Evenflo products, this seat is manufactured in the USA. The upfront harness adjustment is a favorite feature for parents because you can tighten or loosen the harness quickly with one hand. Dual cupholders are integrated in such a way that they don’t add to the width of this seat, which is uncommon in a lot of boosters. They also have an elastic strap to accommodate larger drink cups and bottles. A removable pillow adds extra comfort for long car trips.


It’s made of an extremely durable “grime guard” fabric and is placed directly over the seat of your chair. Not only does it protect against food, it also protects against scratching, which is important if you’ve got a nice set of wood dining room chairs. There are also traction pads on the bottom to keep it firmly in place and help prevent the booster chair from slipping.
Booster seats that are appropriate for babies have an adjustable back. Unlike toddlers, babies don’t have very good head and neck control, or enough core strength to sit upright for long periods of time. A rigid, upright back on a booster will cause them to either slump forward (hitting their head on the tray or table) or slump sideways (causing a potential falling hazard).

We found that the Britax Frontier was one of the easiest booster seats to install overall thanks to its ClickTight technology. The headrest has 9 positions to grow with your child. The seat cover is easy to remove and wash or just spot clean. The weight limits (90 lbs forward-facing, 120 pounds booster) and height limits (58 in. forward-facing, 62 in. booster) are quite high. Plus, heavy padding and quality construction mean it will probably last through at least a couple of kids.


Differences Between Sonus & Stratos 65: Stratos has a higher weight limit for forward-facing and includes 5-position height-adjustable headrest with deep wings. Stratos also offers push-on LATCH connectors, removable cup holders, harness strap covers and an additional “recline stand leg” on base which makes it less likely that you would need to use a pool noodle or rolled up towel to achieve the proper rear-facing recline angle in vehicle.
Some parents have complained that the seat is uncomfortable to carry when the canopy is fully extended. Several noted that the material is a bit more difficult to clean, so if you plan on feeding your child in the car, this might not be a great option. (But feeding them in the car isn’t recommended anyway!) It may also not leave a lot of legroom for taller front seat passengers.
Though it costs over $200, this harness-to-booster seat can be used for several years, as it’s designed for children weighing between 25 and 120 pounds. When your child is between 25 and 90 pounds, you can use the Britax product as a forward-facing harness seat. It has an impressive nine-position harness and two-position buckle to allow for maximum comfort, even as your child grows. Once kids reach the 40-pound mark, the seat can then be used as a belt-positioning booster.
Our comments: Load leg vastly improves crash protection. Super easy to install in a variety of vehicles using rigid lower LATCH connectors. Easy seatbelt installation too with built-in lockoff. Harness adjuster is smooth and very easy to tighten and loosen straps. Fits preemies and small newborns well. The only infant seat currently on the market in the U.S. to feature both rigid lower LATCH connectors and a load leg. The “Dream Drape” feature is amazing. We have a full review of the Nuna PIPA here.
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