With kids constantly growing in to and out of their car seats, tripping over or trying to find storage for seats in limbo was getting old. When I began dreaming of the extra space I would acquire if we didn’t have car seats in every corner, I knew something needed to change. Upon seeing that Graco had released a seat that boasted 10 years (10 YEARS!) of use, I knew we had to try it out. The Graco 4Ever 4-in-1 convertible car seat is rear facing from 4-40 pounds, front facing from 20-65 pounds, and a booster up to 120 pounds. This seat really does grow with your child, and has become my dream come true.
Upon arrival, I pulled the Graco 4Ever out of its box and admired its handsome design. It was hefty at 23 pounds, but took up less space than I had anticipated. It also came fully assembled, with the exception of two cup holders, which slid easily into place. After my initial inspection, I was pulled away briefly, and my 3-year-old son took over testing. He liked it so much that it became his kitchen chair of choice for the better part of a week, crying when his seat finally “left” for the car.
Once in the car, the 4Ever attached extremely easily and quickly using Graco’s InRight Latch System. I love that the latch gives an audible click, so you can hear when the seat is attached correctly, and that an easy release button is also included. I’ve had no more struggles to get car seats installed and uninstalled!
In our Honda Odyssey, I’ve used the 4Ever for a rear-facing infant, a forward-facing toddler, and an older booster-needing child. In each position, the car seat has fit well into the space, with ample room to move around it and to extend seats as needed.
Besides the obvious convenience of buying just one car seat for your child, the 4Ever offers some other advantages to parents. Graco’s Simply Safe Adjust Harness System allows you to easily adjust both the harness and headrest height in one motion, ensuring the perfect fit for your growing child. No time consuming re-threading is needed! Also, it has lower seat sides than other models I’ve tried, so moving baby in and out is easier. This seat can’t be carried or strapped into a stroller for on-the-go moments, but its steel frame and excellent safety and crash test reports provide peace of mind for travelers.
My son initially enjoyed the 4Ever on the kitchen floor, but wound up just as happy with it in the car. Even though he has to share it at times with his siblings, two buckle positions and six seat recline positions allow the car seat to adjust each time to best fit him. The 10 position headrest can also be adjusted one-handed for optimal safety. The seat itself is cushy and cool, and cleaning is simple. The seat cover is machine washable and the cup holders are dishwasher safe. Regardless of its positioning, my kids have all been very comfortable in this car seat.
Now that I have the Graco 4Ever car seat in my life, there isn’t a need to find or keep an endless supply of car seats for different ages and stages. In their 4Ever seat, my kids are happy, secure and cozy travelers, and I am a happy mom with the promise of MUCH more storage space and no other car seats!
Weight limits: rear-facing, 4-40 pounds; forward-facing, 20-65 pounds; booster, 30-120 pounds
Where to buy: gracobaby.com