When buying a car seat, you walk a tightrope to make sure the device is safe and abides by Canadian regulations. Plus, you need to take extra care when picking your product to avoid incompatibility issues with your vehicle.
Finding a model that meets these criteria can be hard. But no worries – we have a breakdown of the top 16 best car seats. Canada drivers who purchase these products enjoy the ultimate piece of mind, knowing their seats are safe and compliant.
What Are the Country’s Best Car Seats? Canada Roads Are About to Become Much Safer
The last thing you want is to take a chance with a poor-quality car seat. After all, your child’s safety is your No. 1 priority, so you’ll want to find the best product.
With that ultimate safety in mind, here are the 16 best car seats in Canada categorized into different groups:
Best Convertible Car Seats in Canada
Convertible car seats are a must-have if you’re looking for a long-term investment. They can be transformed from front-facing to rear-facing configurations and vice versa, enabling you to accommodate infants and toddlers.
Take a look at two of the best convertible car seats for Canadian drivers and their children.
Graco Convertible Car Seat
The Graco Convertible Car Seat reigns supreme in this category. Made of a steel alloy, it’s a sturdy product that can withstand enormous pressure without any signs of damage. Even if you drive on bumpy roads, you shouldn’t have any issues with this product.
Another exceptional feature of this seat is the installation type. It’s a latch model you can fasten to your vehicle within seconds. The buckles are less prone to twisting than is the case with other products. You can even mount the unit in your middle seat if your ride allows it.
If you opt for this car seat, be sure to utilize the four-position extension panel. It’s perfect for kids of all statures, as it lets you add up to five inches of legroom. Hence, you won’t have to worry about whether or not your child is comfortable on your trip.
The installation is straightforward, and so is getting your little one in and out of place. The buckles have a unique storage mechanism that doesn’t come in contact with your baby, eliminating the risk of injuries when making adjustments.
When it comes to load capacity, Graco has done an excellent job. The forward-facing mode can hold up to 65 pounds, whereas the rear-facing option is good for about 50 pounds.
Amazon Rating: 4.8
Britax One4Life ClickTight All-in-One Car Seat
There are more than 150,000 car crashes in Canada every year. Seat manufacturers must rise to the occasion, make car seats safer for children, and help motorists meet growing car insurance requirements.
Some of them, including Britax, have developed several cutting-edge technologies to reduce severe injuries. You can make the most of these technologies if you install the One4Life ClickTight All-in-One Car Seat in your vehicle.
This product brings a lot to the table. Primarily, it comes with an anti-rebound bar to keep your little one steady in case of a crash. It reduces movement, but it’s only available in the rear-facing configuration.
The car seat also enhances safety with many other features, including side layers. In particular, there are two robust side layers to reduce the risk of severe head, neck, and torso injuries.
Once you unpack the unit, you shouldn’t have to struggle to mount it in your vehicle. The ClickTight installation system is reliable and straightforward: open the harness, thread, buckle the seat, and click for secure closure.
To top it all off, the manufacturer offers this car seat with a waterproof liner. It bumps up the price slightly, but it pays off if you want to reduce maintenance.
Amazon Rating: 4.75
Best Infant Car Seats in Canada
The second category we’ll use in this breakdown is infant seats. You can generally use these products for babies up to age one. But sometimes, they might even serve you great through the first two years of your little one’s life.
Here’s the crème de la crème of infant car seats in Canada.
Chicco KeyFit 30 Infant Car Seat
Travelling with infants can be risky if your car lacks an appropriate car seat. There’s a simple workaround – install the Chicco KeyFit 30 Infant Car Seat.
Chicco is one of the most reliable manufacturers of children’s products, and it’s easy to see why when you take a look at this seat. It’s ideal for parents who want to drive their young ones in a safe, fully functional cradle. The rear-facing harness supports up to 30 pounds of pressure and provides approximately 30 inches of legroom.
Setting up the seat should be a walk in the park. It comes with a five-point harness that features a convenient loosening and pulling mechanism. As a result, it usually takes Canadian drivers just a few seconds to fit their infants.
Drivers also appreciate the child-friendly design of this seat. It has a padded interior to protect the most sensitive body parts of your young one, including the head, back, and neck. Even if it’s a bumpy ride, the car seat will absorb all the impact to keep your child safe.
Additionally, the product provides double duty as a car seat and the upper part of your stroller. Just remove it from your car and place it onto your stroller base using an adapter.
Amazon Rating: 4.6
Britax B-Safe Gen2 Flexfit Instant Car Seat
If you’re looking for an infant car seat that blends easy maintenance, robust construction, and ease of use, the Britax B-Safe Gen2 Flexfit Instant Car Seat is an excellent pick. The best thing about this product might be its materials. The frame is made of a steel alloy, whereas the protective shell has thick foam to absorb impact.
Another admirable quality is that there’s no need to re-thread the product. The five-point headrest and harness can be customized at the same time, allowing you to ensure the ultimate comfort for your newborn. The headrest also has six positions to further streamline customizability.
Installation is effortless too. It involves just three steps: link the lower anchors, tighten the straps, and pop your carrier into the base.
As for maintenance, you won’t have to spend hours washing the fabric cover by hand. You can safely clean the cover in your washing machine and dry it in your dryer without damaging the texture. Also, the materials are fire-resistant.
Amazon Rating: 5
Best Car Seats for Toddlers in Canada
You generally use toddler car seats for children between ages two and three. Anything lower than that, and you probably need to install a product specifically for infants.
Canada has no shortage of dependable toddler seats. Your best options are as follows:
BRITAX Grow with You ClickTight Plus Harness-2-Booster
If you’re all about durability, you can’t go wrong with the BRITAX Grow with You ClickTight Plus Harness-2 Booster. The car seat is tough as nails, making it perfect for heavy-duty applications and harsh roads.
When you get your hands on the unit, you’ll immediately see what we’re talking about. The steel frame is super-robust and less susceptible to warps or cracks than standard solutions. Moreover, you get a shock-absorbing base and three-layered sides for the ultimate impact reduction.
Due to such sturdy construction, you might be thinking: “There’s no way this car seat is soft enough for my kid.” This couldn’t be further from the truth. The model comes with well-designed pads to prevent the straps and other parts of the frame from rubbing against your little one. Therefore, your child will experience nothing short of smooth sailing in this seat.
You won’t have safety concerns with this seat either. There’s a five-point strap that keeps your child in place at all times. Best of all, popping the seat in position and fitting your child couldn’t be easier.
Finally, the car seat has a whopping maximum recommended weight of 120 pounds.
Graco Nautilus 65 3-in-1 Harness Booster
Even though the Graco Nautilus is technically a booster, it can be used as a car seat for toddlers. The minimum weight recommendation is 22 pounds, while the upper limit stands at 100 pounds.
Adjustability is one of the strongest suits of this product. It comes with a convenient five-point harness that can be customized alongside your headrest to maximize safety.
Don’t forget that this is a convertible car seat. It supports both forward-facing and rear-facing configurations. Also, it comes in a sleek black colour scheme that complements the interior of most vehicles nicely.
Amazon Rating: 4.7
Best Travel Car Seats in Canada
Each car seat we’ve reviewed is great for travel, but in some cases, you need a product specifically designed for this occasion. That’s where these travel car seats for Canadians come into play. The products are lightweight, easy to set up, and super-comfortable.
Cosco Scenera Next Convertible Car Seat
Cosco is many people’s go-to brand for travel car seats. One of the best items in their collection is the Scenera Next Convertible Car Seat.
The first thing you notice when you get a view of this car seat is that it’s light as a feather. Weighing only seven pounds, it’s a match made in heaven for parents who want to travel with minimal luggage. The seamless design allows for simple installation anywhere.
Speaking of installation, you don’t need advanced technical knowledge to mount this car seat. Whether you use the front-facing or rear-facing configuration, utilize the five-point harness for effortless adjustments. There are also three buckle positions to help you find the right fit for your children.
Impact protection is also admirable. This is a padded seat that absorbs shock in the head, neck, back, bottom, and hand areas to keep your kid unharmed and comfortable.
Want to travel by plane? You got it. This product has a flexible design that can be used just about anywhere, including airplanes. It’s a practical, minimalist model that doesn’t get in the way of other passengers, making it a perfect travel companion.
Amazon Rating: 4.3
Evenflo Tribute LX Convertible Car Seat
This product by Evenflo is another worthy contender for the title of the best car seat for travel in Canada. It boasts a compact yet robust design that fits most vehicles with ease. There’s also a four-shoulder harness position that lets you increase the comfort of your young one.
Shock absorption is remarkable too. You get a soft padded head pillow to support the natural position of your child’s head and lessen the chances of injuries.
Amazon Rating: 4.2
Best Car Seats for Small Cars in Canada
Not everyone is a fan of SUVs and other large vehicles. You may like to keep your car compact to navigate traffic more easily. This also means you need to look for seats that are compatible with your ride. Otherwise, the product might not be the right fit for your compact vehicle, leading to safety concerns.
You won’t have this problem if you choose one of these car seats for small cars.
Diono Radian 3RXT
The main feature you should look for in car seats for small vehicles is adjustability. The Diono Radian 3RXT provides ample adjustability and then some.
If your vehicle is short on space, don’t panic. Simply utilize one of the 12 built-in recliner positions to accomplish the best configuration for your interior. Such a wide range of positions allows you to accommodate numerous cars and children’s ages. Plus, you’ll only need one hand to customize the product.
Diono is known for durable car seats, and it doesn’t get much sturdier than the 3RXT. It comes with a steel body that provides unmatched structural integrity for years to come. The manufacturer also uses polypropylene and polystyrene to balance things out by making the seat softer and lighter.
Amazon rating: 4.5
Safety 1st Grow and Go Extend ‘N Ride All-in-One Convertible Car Seat
The name says it all. The Safety 1st Grow and Go Car Seat prioritizes safety, featuring a super-stable footrest that comes through in the event of a crash. It keeps your little one in a fixed position. Plus, it has a five-point harness connected with a durable buckle release. This amplifies the protection for your child, giving you peace of mind.
Another great thing about the product is that you don’t have to dismount it as your child grows. You can adjust the headrest and height using a simple mechanism.
Amazon Rating: 4.6
Best Booster Car Seats in Canada
What if your child is neither an infant nor a toddler? Does this mean you won’t be able to find a car seat suitable for your kid? The answer is a resounding no.
You can consider several so-called booster seats, which are designed for older kids. If your child has outgrown the height and footrest of your toddler seat, these are the right products for you.
Diono Monterey 2XT Latch 2 in 1 High Back Booster Car Seat
Diono makes another appearance on our rundown with a product that’s equally as impressive as the first one. The 2XT is a phenomenal booster that takes the safety of your rides to a whole new level. The product features top-shelf impact protection due to layered sides, which shield your children from shoulder, head, and neck injuries.
The frame is also terrific. Diono has used sturdy yet lightweight aluminum to help extend the lifespan of the seat. This is a 14-pound product, making it one of the lightest boosters on the market.
If you wish to adjust the headrest, you’ll have no trouble doing so. The seat features a one-hand adjustment mechanism that lets you cycle between 11 headrest positions. It enables you to maximize safety and comfort for your young one.
The colour variety is notable too. You can choose from a myriad of eye-catching nuances, such as yellow sulphur, and plum. Standard colours are also available (black, red, blue), allowing you to spice up your car while optimizing its child-friendly interior.
Amazon Rating: 4.6
Graco TurboBooster Highback Booster
You can rely on Graco for extraordinary booster car seats, including this one. The TurboBooster is a fantastic pick for various needs. It can accommodate children who weigh between 40 and 100 pounds, whereas the height cap lies at 57 inches.
Out of the box, the headrest may grab your attention. And rightfully so – it’s an adjustable model that provides complete coverage for your kid.
This is also considered one of the best multifunctional car rests in Canada. That’s because it comes with hidden cup holders that let your kids store drinks safely.
Amazon Rating: 4.7
Best Forward-Facing Car Seats in Canada
There are several ways to narrow down your selection of the best car seats. Canada has thousands of products categorized into all sorts of groups, but orientation might be the key feature for you.
There are two types of orientation to choose from – front-facing and rear-facing. Let’s first examine the best forward-facing car seats in Canada.
Britax Marathon Convertible Car Seat
Although there are car seats that are front facing only, why settle for a fixed product? Convertible models work just as well as their fixed counterparts. Plus, you can adjust them to accommodate different scenarios.
The best forward-facing model might be the Britax Marathon Convertible Car Seat. This unit is sturdy as a rock, featuring a steel frame and the ability to support up to 65 pounds. Complementing the frame is leather upholstery and side padding to protect the torso, head, and neck. Furthermore, the manufacturer has used fire-resistant fabrics that are free from toxic chemicals.
You’ll also like the user-friendly design of this product. It boasts proprietary ClickTight installation, meaning the seat doesn’t get in the way of seat belts. On top of that, the tension is set automatically, eliminating the guesswork associated with this process.
Regarding maintenance, Britax has come up with a premium solution. There’s no need to wash the cover manually – simply toss the item in your washer and dryer. It’ll be ready for a new adventure in no time.
Amazon Rating: 4.4
Evenflo 30712344C Chase Plus 2-In-1 Booster Car Seat
The Evenflo Chase Plus is a top-rated car seat for fans of forward-facing products. It features a state-of-the-art headrest that enables smooth customizations. In fact, the technology automatically adjusts your seat belt to the seat to enhance safety.
Moreover, the product is designed to absorb impact. There are superb pads to protect the most sensitive body parts and make your children more comfortable during extended journeys.
Amazon Rating: 4.6
Best Rear-Facing Car Seats in Canada
On the other end of the orientation spectrum lie rear-facing car seats. They’re generally meant for infants and toddlers.
Here are some of the best rear-facing car seats in Canada.
Britax Advocate Convertible Car Seat
As previously discussed, there’s no need to limit yourself to fixed-orientation car seats. Investing in a convertible model is a great way to get your money’s worth, especially if you select the Britax Advocate Convertible Car Seat.
This product easily passes as a front-facing car seat. The base pops right into most vehicles without any modifications and allows for seamless adjustments. The harness and headrests can be moved simultaneously to accommodate various heights. Also, once the seat is in place, it provides a clear path to the seatbelts to maximize security.
Like many other Britax products, this car seat automatically sets tension. This feature helps keep your child safe and stops them from swerving.
But even if they move due to road obstacles or speed bumps, you won’t have to worry about injuries. The seat absorbs side impact with three convenient protective layers. There’s even a steel 35-pound frame that can take quite a beating and come out unscathed.
The car seat performs fantastically, but what about the appearance? It’s the highlight of the product in many people’s eyes. Namely, the product is available in a host of colours, and there’s a ribbed texture that feels amazing to the touch.
Finally, you can say goodbye to hand washing if you opt for this product. The cover of this rear-facing car seat is washer and dryer-friendly, which translates to hassle-free maintenance.
Amazon Rating: 5
Evenflo EveryFit All-in-One Car Seat
Evenflo delivers another premium rear-facing solution with the EveryFit All-in-One Car Seat. It’s actually a convertible model with three rear positions and one forward position, offering much-needed versatility.
Whatever arrangement you choose, you’ll receive exceptional breathability. The product has mesh fabrics to create a comfortable driving experience for your young ones. Also, you can safely clean the outer cover of this model in your washing machine.
Amazon Rating: 3.8
Car Seat Regulations in Canada
To facilitate road safety, the government of Canada has introduced several regulations that govern the use of car seats:
- Use rear-facing seats for young kids and infants.
- Don’t use forward-facing seats for children who weigh less than 22 pounds.
- Don’t use booster seats for kids who weigh under 40 pounds.
Also, make sure your seat has Canada’s National Safety Mark to avoid legal issues and verify you can safely use your product.
Looking to Elevate Safety With the Best Car Seats? Canada Offers Plenty of Options
As with any vehicle accessory, finding the ideal car seat takes time. Therefore, consider your children’s age and stature carefully when making your pick. Depending on these factors, you’ll know which above product fits your child perfectly.
FAQs about Best Car Seats in Canada
You should switch to a forward-facing car seat in Canada when your child weighs more than 22 pounds.
The lifespan of car seats in Canada depends on several factors. For instance, products of some manufacturers only last for a year or two. Others, such as those made by Britax and other renowned brands, can serve you great for a decade.
In most cases, yes. Uber users are generally required to get a car seat for their children in Canada.
The safest position of your car seat is in the middle of the back seat. If this isn’t an option, it should be placed behind the passenger seat, so you can take your child out of the car safely on the pavement.
Yes. You can’t use expired car seats in Canada.
You should normally switch from an infant seat to a convertible model when your child outgrows it. This usually happens when your kid is taller than 35 inches and weighs more than 35 pounds.
You can bring a car seat on a plane in Canada if the seat has a compliance label that verifies it’s safe to use on an airplane.
No. Convertible car seats are too large for newborns.
The best way to store your car seat when travelling is to use a specifically designed car seat bag. Preferably, select a padded bag for better protection.
Compare Canadian car insurance policies and find the one that best suits your needs.
About The Author: Arthur Dubois
Passionate about personal finance and financial technology, Arthur Dubois is a writer and SEO specialist at Hardbacon. Since his arrival in Canada, he’s built his credit score from nothing.
Arthur invests in the stock market but doesn’t pay any fees because he uses National Bank Direct Brokerage online broker and Wealthsimple’s robo-advisor. He pays for his subscriptions online with his KOHO prepaid card, and uses his Tangerine credit card for most of his in-store purchases. When he buys bitcoins, it’s with the BitBuy online platform. Of course it goes without saying that he uses the Hardbacon app so that he can manage all of his finances from one convenient place.
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