Reviews On 7 Top-Rated Recommended Baby Car Seats For A 3 Year Old

WVDOT Automotive is reader-supported. This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Did your child finally grow out of his old car seat, or are you just looking for an upgrade? Choosing the right car seat for your kid is a difficult task. You don’t know if the product is reliable or just falsely advertised. This article aims to eliminate that issue.

With each seat claiming to be the best car seat for 3 year old, you need to make sure you pick the correct product. You will find seven of the top car seats in this article that you can buy right now. You will be pleasantly surprised with every single one of them.

So, without any further ado, let’s get straight into it.

7 Top Best Three Year Old Toddler Car Seats Comparison

IMAGE PRODUCT EDITOR’S RATING PRICE
TOP PICK

Graco Affix Highback Booster Seat

Graco Affix Highback Booster Seat

9.7
CHECK ON AMAZON
KidsEmbrace 2-In-1 Harness Booster Seat KidsEmbrace 2-In-1 Harness Booster Seat

9.5
CHECK ON AMAZON
Chicco MyFit Harness + Booster Car Seat Chicco MyFit Harness + Booster Car Seat

9.1
CHECK ON AMAZON
Chicco NextFit Zip Convertible Car Seat Chicco NextFit Zip Convertible Car Seat

8.8
CHECK ON AMAZON
Safety 1st Jive 2-In-1 Convertible Car Seat Safety 1st Jive 2-In-1 Convertible Car Seat

8.6
CHECK ON AMAZON
BEST BUDGET

Cosco Finale DX 2-In-1 Booster Car Seat

Cosco Finale DX 2-In-1 Booster Car Seat

8.2
CHECK ON AMAZON
Britax Emblem 3 Stage Convertible Car Seat Britax Emblem 3 Stage Convertible Car Seat

8
CHECK ON AMAZON

1. Graco Affix Highback Booster Seat

Arriving in the first place is a Booster Seat by the Brand Graco. The company has earned the top spot on two of my previous lists by a large margin. I can say the same for this one too. This Affix car seat has over 19000 positive buyers. Let’s see what it has to offer.

If you are confused about the difference between the different types of seats, I have detailed this in the FAQ that follows this article. If your kid is in the 40 to 100-pound range, there is nothing better than this car seat to keep him safe.

The single latch, which can be adjusted with one hand, secures the seat to the vehicle seat. The secure connection will make sure that the seat will not move when the kid tries to self-buckle.

If your kid is transitioning from a reverse side or a front fashion car seat, chances are he or she may feel uncomfortable. So, the brand has taken some steps to reduce that discomfort.

Moreover, the headrest on this car seat has been made multi-layered. It is also fully adjustable, so your child will have the comfort he or she needs. This ensures that the child will remain comfortable. The back support has full coverage, which also helps in comfort and greatly boosts safety.

However, the manufacturer has used EPS foam in the car seat. The foam is great at absorbing shocks, which will be extremely useful if there is a collision or an accident.

Buyers were disappointed as some kids, who were around the 50-pound mark, could not sit in the seat comfortably. If the advertisement on the product is misleading, the manufacturer should fix it as soon as possible.
PROS
  • Single latch for easy use
  • Maximum comfort
  • EPS foam for absorbing forces
  • Multi-layered, adjustable headrest
CONS
  • Misleading advertising

The brand must look into this issue and solve it as soon as possible because buyers may have an issue and return it. This is not good for the brand or the customer.

We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
09/04/2021 10:37 am GMT

2. KidsEmbrace 2-In-1 Harness Booster Seat

I don’t know about you, but I am a huge Marvel fan. Be it Iron Man or the Hulk; I like them all. So, you can expect that I am in absolute awe of this Booster Car Seat’s Design. KidsEmbrace has three-five different styles for this car seat.

You can choose from the black panther, Captain America, incredible hulk, iron man and spider-man, on the product listing. With over 3500 happy buyers, I am not the only one who likes the seat. Let’s see if it is decent enough in terms of practicality too.

This is a 2-in-1 harness booster seat. It is perfect for kids that are two years and older. The 5 point harness security will give your child the best possible protection.

The harness shoulder straps can be set in three different positions. This is perfect for kids as they grow up. The brand recommends that the car be used as a full-fledged car seat with the harness until the weight limit has been reached.

If you want to know about the product passing major safety standards, you can have complete peace of mind. This car seat not only meets but exceeds all Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards. It has even been tested for side impact protection, but with the five-point harness only.

You don’t need to worry about the product’s comfort level. The three-position adjustable height headrest has been equipped with EPS foam. As I told you in the previous product, EPS is great at absorbing impacts, and it does not compromise comfort.

Buyers complained that the car seat does not install tightly, no matter how much force is applied. This is a serious issue, and it affects the safety of the child while driving. Kids Embrace must resolve this matter as soon as possible.
PROS
  • 2-in-1 design
  • Exceeds all safety standards
  • EPS foam for maximum security
  • Three-position headrest
CONS
  • Fitment issues

There is no doubt that Kids Embrace has created a spectacular product. Although the number of buyers who received units that had fitting issues was less, the company must ensure that its manufacturing process does not have any issues.

We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
09/04/2021 10:43 am GMT

3. Chicco MyFit Harness + Booster Car Seat

Taking up the third spot is yet another product from a highly popular brand, Chicco. This MyFit Harness + Booster Car Seat has some pretty impressive features which you will definitely love and appreciate. Let’s dive into its details and see it is worth it.

With over 1600 positive buyers, the product has received a solid five stars. It is available in two different colors, fathoms and gardenia, which are just fancy names for grey and purple. Both are very attractive colors, and you can choose the right one according to your kid’s gender.

Just like the previous car seat, this one also has a 2-in-1 design. It has a five point harness and can be converted to a booster seat when the child is old enough. This means that you will have this product for a long time. Duo Guard side impact protection is also there in this car seat.

In this system, you are getting full protection for the head and torso, thanks to the use of a steel frame. This is extremely useful if there is an unexpected collision or accident. The car seat has a four position recline design alongside a headrest of nine position. The seat also has padding or contour.

All of this ensures that your child will have an extremely comfortable experience when he or she is in it. For added convenience, the manufacturer has also added 2 cup holders that can be removed with a push of a button. These holders are completely dishwasher safe, meaning you won’t have any issues in cleaning them.

One buyer complained about the harness system being broken on arrival. Although the chances of this happening are rare, what is more, concerning is that the brand did not respond to the customer’s queries. It looks like they need to improve their customer support service.
PROS
  • 2-in-1 design
  • Duo Guard side impact protection
  • Steel reinforced frame
  • 4-position recline and 9-position headrest
CONS
  • Non-existent customer support

Although I can’t guarantee your experience if you receive a faulty unit, the chances of something like this happening are incredibly low. You can order this Chicco car seat right now, and you will be more than content with what you receive.

We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
09/04/2021 10:41 am GMT

4. Chicco NextFit Zip Convertible Car Seat

Arriving in fourth place is yet Another Product by the Brand Chicco. With over 700 positive buyers, it is bound to make you content with your purchase. The fact that the manufacturer was able to earn two spots on this article is enough to tell you about the quality of its products.

With a hefty price tag of $300, this NextFit car seat should be an extraordinary product. Well, all of Chicco’s products are just like that.

The padding has a zip-off design, which means that you can remove it and wash it to keep it clean. The padding is machine washable, which greatly increases the convenience of owning the product.

The brand claims that this car seat is remarkably easy to install. It also has a 9-position leveling system called the Recline Sure.

The manufacturer has also used its very own Super Cinch latch system, which ensures that the seat belt will always be tight and locked. The manufacturer states that the car seat has the Duo Guard protection system, just like the previous one.

What this protection system consists of is a deep shell, EPS foam padding, and a steel-reinforced frame. All of this combined gives your child the ultimate protection from an unforeseen scenario.

This car seat has been designed for toddlers and infants. So, for small babies, the brand has also added a newborn positioner, which can be easily removed. The harness has a no-rethread design. This ensures that the transition to forward-facing fashion will be easy and comfortable.

Apart from the expensive price tag, some buyers complained about the seat not latching properly. One buyer noticed that the restraints, themselves, were twisted, which made latching impossible. Chicco must look into this matter and solve it as soon as possible.
PROS
  • Removable and machine washable padding
  • Duo Guard protection system
  • Removable newborn positioner
  • EPS foam padding
CONS
  • Expensive
  • Latching issues

If you are looking to spare no expense in the safety and comfort of your child, there is nothing that can beat this car seat. You can rest assured that you are getting top-of-the-line safety features that will keep your kid safe and secure.

We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
09/04/2021 10:39 am GMT

5. Safety 1st Jive 2-In-1 Convertible Car Seat

If you are on a bit of a budget and are not looking to spend $300 on your child’s security, then you really need a guide to avoiding all the falsely advertised products. Thanks to my extensive research, I found just the thing for you. Arriving in fifth place is the Jive 2-In-1 Convertible Car Seat from the Brand Safety 1st.

With a price tag of $90, it is surely the best option in this range. Let’s check out what it has to offer. You would expect a product like this one to skip or compromise on a few features. Well, that is where you would be wrong. This car seat has implemented excellent security features.

The car seat has a 5-point harness, which can be adjusted easily. This is perfect for parents who are looking to use a car seat for a long period of time. The three buckle locations also help in this regard. The most common issue with car seats is that they get dirty very quickly.

Whether it is a kid’s pee or just his food, the car seat is the first to get wet and stained. Safety 1st did think of this, and it has used a fabric that is not only machine washable but is dryer safe too.

To make sure the car seat will not have issues anywhere; the brand has confirmed that it is airplane-ready. This means that you can hook it up with an airplane seat without any issues or any hassle. The compact design also makes it super easy to take from one place to another.

Buyers had one common issue with this car seat. They stated that their units were very difficult to install. One buyer also complained that his car seat would tilt or tip over when turning the vehicle. This is a matter that must be resolved as soon as possible by the brand.
PROS
  • Relatively inexpensive
  • 5-point harness
  • Machine washable fabric
  • Airplane ready
CONS
  • Install issues
  • May tip while turning the car

Although install issues are pretty common with car seats, the fact that it will not stay put even after installing is something the manufacturer must address as soon as possible and fix it.

We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
09/04/2021 10:43 am GMT

6. Cosco Finale DX 2-In-1 Booster Car Seat

Buyers that have a higher price budget have no issues in finding alternatives to car seats. The same cannot be said for low-budget buyers. I have got you covered.

If you are not satisfied with the previous car seat, you will certainly love this Cosco Finale DX2-In-1 Booster Car Seat. With a price that is even lower than the previous one, Cosco really has outdone itself this time.

Thanks to the brand’s use of the 2-in-1 design, the car seat can be classified as an extended use one. It can be used in the forward-facing fashion for kids that are between the 30 and 65-pound range. As for the booster seat, if they are between 40 and 100, there will be no issues with the product.

Without compromising on durability or security, the manufacturer has designed this car seat to fit three across in most vehicles. This is a very attractive feature for people who have a growing family.

So, you can buy it with the complete peace of mind that you can fit two more car seats alongside it, as long as the other two are designed in a similar manner too.

The car seat is also lightweight. Now, you must not confuse yourself. The low weight is not due to the low price tag. It is a design choice and a pretty good one too. The manufacturer has thought about common issues that users have, such as moving the car seat. The lightweight aids in scenarios like that.

Another great thing about this car seat is that it is made in the USA. What this means is that you are getting high-quality parts and the best possible quality control. You can be sure that you are ordering a high-quality product when buying from the brand.

Buyers reported that the build quality of the car seat is not up to par. This is something you would expect from an inexpensive product.
PROS
  • Inexpensive
  • 2-in-1 design
  • Designed to fit three across
  • Lightweight
CONS
  • Poor build quality

I wouldn’t really blame the brand for producing a car seat that does not have high-quality materials. In order to reach this price tag, of course, there had to be a few sacrifices.

We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
09/04/2021 10:38 am GMT

7. Britax Emblem 3 Stage Convertible Car Seat

Finally, arriving in the seventh and final place is a Convertible Car Seat from the Brand Britax. With over 200 positive buyers, it is far from being the most popular option out there. But it has some pretty decent offerings that you will definitely appreciate.

The brand claims that the car seat is extremely easy to install. That is possible, thanks to the push-button latch connectors that have built-in lock-offs. This makes the car installation extremely easy and quick. The car seat cover can also be removed without removing the harness, which allows for easy clean-up.

This car seat does not require any rethreading. The harness has a ten position adjust capacity, meaning your child will never have any discomfort as he grows—the harness changes from 8.5 inches to 17.5 inches. The headrest also adjusts accordingly to ensure that your kid will not feel any discomfort.

However, the safety offerings on this car seat are also outstanding. There are two layers for side impact protection. It does not end there. The manufacturer has used a steel frame and an impact-absorbing base that has a v-shaped tether. This reduced forward movement significantly. The car seat has a 2-in-1 design.

For kids that are anywhere between 5 and 40 pounds, you can use the seat in the rear-facing fashion. For 20 to 65 pounds, it is recommended to use the forward-facing mode of the seat. What this means is that you will be happy and content with this car seat for a very long time.

There were two negative ratings for this product. One buyer stated that his child could loosen the straps easily, while the other one complained that the installation was extremely difficult to install.
PROS
  • 2-in-1 design
  • 10-position adjustable harness
  • Two layers for side impact protection
CONS
  • The kid may loosen the straps by him/herself
  • Difficult installation

The manufacturer must fix this design flaw to ensure that children’s safety will not be compromised with this product. Other than that, you will be more than content with your purchase.

We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
09/04/2021 10:35 am GMT

FAQ

What Is The Difference Between A Booster Car Seat And A Convertible One?

This is an excellent question. Well, convertible car seats have a harness system that booster ones do not have.

Booster car seats, instead, use vehicle car seats as the harness for keeping the child in place. Although convertibles are more secure, there always comes a time when a child must gradually shift from it to the more practical one.

What Is The Difference Between A High Back And A Backless Booster Seat?

The answer is in the question. A high back seat has support for the child’s back, while a backless booster seat has only a base for the child to sit.

If you have to choose between the two, I would definitely recommend that you use a high back seat, because the other option is not very comfortable.

What Car Seat Should A 3 Year Old Be In?

After the age of three, a child should be shifted to a booster seat. As I explained before, a booster seat uses the car’ seat belt. A child may or may not find this new type of security system comfortable, so this must be kept in mind.

Does A 3 Year Old Need A 5-Point Harness?

The answer varies according to the car seat you own. Most car seats manufacturers provide the details in the seat’s manuals. If they say that the seat is usable for 3 year olds with a harness, then you can use it without any issues.

Conclusion

As you may have seen from this article, choosing the correct car seat for your child is an extremely important decision. You need to know if the product is reliable or not. Manufacturers can falsely advertise their products, making them look better than they actually are.

This is how they claim that their products are the best car seat for 3 year old. So, I not only analyzed the company’s claims but cross-checked them with buyer ratings.

This is how these products wound up on my list. If I have to choose one, then I would definitely choose the Graco Affix Highback Car Seat as my recommendation to you all.