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Car seats

Graco Smart Seat
Approximate retail price:
Summary: The newest among All-in-One models, and the only All-in-One offered by Graco.
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Community icon2 people have reviewed this model.
User Reviews
User Reviews

Love This Seat
Cup holder
Easy To Install
Easy to tighten
Great Look
Great material
Lots Of Recline Positions
No Rethread Harness
Stay In Car Base
Bulky Harness Strap Cover
Headrest Leans Forward
Headrest Pushes Forward
Not Suitable For Aircraft
Short Side Impact Cushion
Best Uses
Child Restraint
Forward Or Rear Facing
Infant Restraint
Infant toddler child
Toddler Restraint
I really do love this seat. Here are the reasons why:<br /><br />The material stays cool in the sun (I have the beige and black model. It also has a steel frame like the Britax. <br /><br />The harness pulls tight and loosens like butter. I have tried to do the same with 5 other different models/Brands that my families have (Britax, Graco, Recardo) and the straps are so hard to tighten that you can fit 2 to 3 fingers between the child's chest and the strap after tons of yanking. Still the harness won't budge after that. The straps also twisted on those other models. It is a bigger risk too if you have to rethread the harness yourself and accidently twist it in the process. The seats my family members have received better safety ratings, but I feel that does no good if you can not use the seat properly as intended. <br /><br />The same issue goes for the install. This seat installs so fast and easy. You can leave the base in and switch forward facing to rear and back again. With the other seats I mentioned, the parents had such a hard time installing it that it moves left to right 3 -4 inches!! That is not safe. I even tried to install theirs and was able to get it within an inch wiggle but it took me 20 minutes! The graco smart seat can install in 5 minutes after reading the manual or using common sense. Again what good is a seat if you aren't going to use it properly? With the graco smart seat, the base will not even move without moving the whole car. That is safe. <br /><br />The material wipes clean very easily. I have yet to wash the whole thing as I hear that can be time consuming the first time with all the snaps that come off. That is a drawback. I like how on the Britax marathon you can remove the cover with the seat still installed. But with a stay in car base it is easy to take out the whole seat and take off the cover without needing to reinstall it. <br /><br />I do wish the side impact protection wings were longer, (especially since there is no regulated standard on SIP). I only hope graco tests it thoroughly as they say. This one comes out about 7-7.5 inches and the britax M. 70, Recardo, Chicco Next fit come out about 8 or 9 inches. The drawback of a high side is the child cannot look out easily, but I would prefer that over a short side personally. <br /><br />People complain about the seat being big and heavy but it is more WIDE than big. Hence, not suitable to fit a plan seat. As for heaviness, it says 33 pounds but 10 pounds or so is the car seat that never gets moved. I am a small lady, and I can lift this seat without breaking a sweat. It is no issue. I do all the install and removing. If people complain about it being too heavy then they will have trouble with most all the other convertible models out there. <br /><br />The reclines are great and super smooth to use and the no rethread harness is great too. One hand use. I tried the chicco nextfit and returned it because the fabric had a chemical smell, it took two hands and lots of work to move the headrest up, and you could not tighten it without tugging multiple times (and my child would cry as I used all my force tugging and tugging to get it barely tight; a common issue I read among buyers). <br /><br />The arm rests are great for getting in and out, but I use them for holding the harness straps so I can get my child in without digging them out from them. With the Chicco next fit that was a problem. With the Briax marathon, the velcro tabs to hold the harness straps catch on clothes and fray them. So this is a good feature. <br /><br />The harness straps are bulky and I wish they weren't. It was weird using them at first and trying to position them just right to get a tight harness pull. It only took a couple times using it, and now I am a pro and it does not get in the way at all. I do not think I need to use them due to my childs weight, but they help to keep the straps from digging in to her neck. She is still a toddler. Plus like I said it is so easy and quick to pull tight, neither my child nor I notice them anymore. <br /><br />People also complain about it being too big for cars. Rear facing it is fine until you want a tall toddler using it. Then you have to raise the headrest and in a small car like our Toy. Corolla, you will lose front seat room. As a baby, it takes up no more room than our chicco car seat did. Forward facing it is just fine. <br />A plus is that because of the car seat part you can have a tall toddler in the seat rear facing and their legs have more inches to grow before bending. With the chicco car seat, my daughter was a half inch from touching the back seat rear facing. When I moved her to the Chicco nextfit convertible, her feet were so close to the back seat they bunched and folded. With the smart seat she had another 3-4 inches leg room to grow before touching the seat so she could stay rear facing without the annoyance of her legs bunching. <br /><br />Lastly, my child loves this seat. She cried when being put in other models but not this one. But I do notice that the material behind the head protrudes forward slightly more than other models. I wonder if that is uncomfortable for her. She doesn't seem to mind, but I like to lean my head back to sleep so I just think about these things...<br /><br />Overall, I really like this seat. I wish it was given better reviews by consumer reports, but like I said, some of the other brands I have tried were so hard to use day to day that improper install and use makes it unsafe, but these were rated the highest by CR. So I take their opinion with a grain of salt now. This seat is guaranteed to get you an easy, tight, comfy install. It has side impact protection, EPS foam, and grows with your child. It is good for ten years from the manufacture date. This could be the last seat your newborn may ever need (5-100 pounds). There were only some minor details that kept me from giving it a 5 star rating.
How long have you owned it:
Three-to-six months
Bottom Line
Yes, I would recommend this to a friend.

Graco smart seat
Safe Comfortable
Hard to move
Best Uses
I love love love this car seat! I feel that my little toddler is completely safe. She is also very comfortable in this seat. It has definitely come in handy on long trips when comfort matters! The only inconvenient thing is that this seat is like a piece of furniture. It is very difficult to move and also time consuming. With that said, it doesn't bother me at all because I feel that it's size is only adding to my daughters safety. We bought a second seat for our other vehicle because we switch out cars often and it was getting to be a bit of a pain to switch out.
How long have you owned it:
More than six months
Bottom Line
Yes, I would recommend this to a friend.
The Graco Smart Seat is part of the Car seats test program at Consumer Reports. The Graco Smart Seat Car seats features and specs include Rear facing weight range (lbs.), Booster height range total (in.), Booster weight range (lbs.), Forward facing height range (in.), Forward facing weight range (lbs.), Rear facing height range (in.), Seat weight (lbs.). In our lab tests, Car seats models like the Graco Smart Seat are reviewed on Overall score, Ease of use, Forward facing fit-to-vehicle, Rear facing fit-to-vehicle, Crash protection/Belt fit booster, Harnessed crash protection. Consumer Reports subscribers share reviews of the Graco Smart Seat based on personal experience. The user reviews of the Graco Smart Seat include star ratings, pros, cons, best uses, and a bottom line review to help guide your purchasing decision of the Graco Smart Seat.
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