Graco SlimFit All-in-One Review
Pros: Price, easy LATCH installation, easier to use
Cons: Average crash result analysis
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Graco SlimFit All-in-One
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|Pros||Price, easy LATCH installation, easier to use||Easy to install and use, cozy comfort, nice quality||Great crash test results, easy to use, attractive price, lighter||Best crash test results, rear-facing till 50 lbs, price||Price, easy to use, best head sensor crash test|
|Cons||Average crash result analysis||Average crash test results||Harder to install using the vehicle belt||Not the best quality, harder belt installation||Less padding, somewhat harder to install using vehicle belt|
|Bottom Line||Somewhat better than the average option with nothing extraordinary to sing about||Parents will love this easy to install, quality seat with nice features||Great lightweight seat with excellent crash test results that is very easy to use||Rear-facing up to 50 lbs and the best crash results are a bonus to this budget-friendly seat||Budget-friendly, easy to use option with better crash test results make it a standout|
|Rating Categories||Graco SlimFit...||Boulevard...||Britax Emblem||Graco Extend2Fit||Britax Allegiance|
|Crash Test (35%)|
|Ease Of Install LATCH (20%)|
|Ease Of Install Belt (15%)|
|Ease Of Use (15%)|
|Comfort Quality (10%)|
|Weight Size (5%)|
|Specs||Graco SlimFit...||Boulevard...||Britax Emblem||Graco Extend2Fit||Britax Allegiance|
|Min/Max Rear Facing Passenger Weight||5 - 40 lbs||5 - 40 lbs||5 - 40 lbs||4 - 50 lbs||5 - 40 lbs|
|Min/Max Forward Facing Passenger Weight||22 - 65 lbs||20 - 65 lbs||20 - 65 lbs||22 - 64 lbs||20 - 65 lbs|
|Max Rear Facing Passenger Height||40" and the child's head must be at least 1 in. below the top of the child restraint.||Childs head must be at least 1 in. below the top of the head restraint||Childs head must be at least 1 in. below the top of the head restraint||Childs head must be at least 1 in. below the top of the head restraint||Childs head must be at least 1 in. below the top of the head restraint|
|Max Forward Facing Passenger Height||49" and the child's ears must be below the top of the seat shell.||49" and the child's ears must be below the top of the head restraint.||49" and the child's ears must be below the top of the head restraint.||49" and the child's ears must be below the top of the seat shell.||49" and the child's ears must be below the top of the head restraint.|
|Measured Rear Facing Seat Weight||18.6 lbs||29.5 lbs||18.8 lbs||18.7 lbs||18.5 lbs|
|Measured Forward Facing Seat Weight||18.6 lbs||28.4 lbs||18.8 lbs||18.7 lbs||18.5 lbs|
|Recline Positions||4 Total
2 Rear Facing
2 Forward Facing
|7||1 Rear Facing
2 Forward Facing
|4 Rear Facing
3 Forward Facing
|1 Rear Facing
2 Forward Facing
|Max Recline Angle||°||51°||42°||51°||42°|
|Shoulder Harness Positions||10||14||10||10||10|
|Crotch Strap Positions||3||2||2||2||2|
|Built in Lock Off||No||No||Yes||No||Yes|
|No Rethread Harness||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Onboard Manual Storage||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Level Indicator On Seat||Ball in Tube.||Ball in Tube.||Line on Decal||Ball in Tube.||Line on Decal|
|Seat Lifespan||10 yrs||10 yrs||7||7 yrs||7|
|Warranty||1 Year||1 Year||1 Year||1 Year||1 Year|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Graco we know and love began in 1953 after the metal fabrication company hired an engineer to design something new. Rex Thomas and David Saint were inspired by a coworker's story of soothing a baby using an outdoor glider. Their unique design launched Graco into the baby product world, selling millions in a short time. Graco continues to create baby gear, including strollers, car seats, swings, and more.
The Graco SlimFit All-in-One crash test analysis score is just below the average. While it passes the federal safety standards, it does not appear to offer an additional margin of protection compared to the competition, in our opinion.
The HIC result for this Graco (chart above) is 320, where the maximum allowed is 1000, and a lower number is better. This result is fairly impressive on its own as it is significantly below the max allowed. Still, when compared to the competition where several seats had results below 300 and the best being a 186 for the Britax Allegiance, you can see how it didn't measure up to the competition.
The Slim's chest sensor result (chart above) is 43, where the maximum allowed is 60. Once again, it easily passes the federal standard, and viewed on its own, it feels like a good score. However, the lowest result, and therefore the best in this group, is a 34 earned by the Clek Foonf.
The best-combined results for HIC and chest sensors belong to the Graco Extend2Fit.
Ease of Install - LATCH
The SlimFit All-in-One has push connect LATCH anchors we like better than clip style, and it earned its best installation score using LATCH. Attaching the anchors is easy, and tightening the strap wasn't a hassle. Loosening the strap is also simple, and we didn't need extra strength to install or remove the seat as we did with some of the competition.
We were able to get a more secure feeling fit with the seat in the rear-facing position. Still, both were stable enough that we didn't experience significant movement when properly installed. Whether you install using LATCH or the vehicle belt, you need to move some padding around to get the straps in the right location. This isn't hard but is more convoluted than some of the more straightforward competition. There is an easy-to-read ball level indicator to ensure the seat is installed at the correct angle.
Ease of Install - Belt
Installing the Graco SlimFit All-in-One using the vehicle belt is somewhat harder than the LATCH, but it only lost a point for this method. The padding on the seat and seatback needs to be moved to thread the belt, and those with larger hands are going to struggle with the smaller belt path openings. Potentially making this installation more challenging for some dads.
Rear-facing shoulder/lap belt installation is easier and feels more secure in our tests than front-facing, where we struggled to get the vehicle belt tight enough to hold the seat in one position. However, when installed rear-facing, the entire seat was able to tip back toward the vehicle seat.
Ease of Use
The SlimFit All-in-One is easier to use than much of the competition, with a straightforward design and nothing fancy to figure out.
The buckle on this seat is similar to other Graco buckles, and while easier to depress than some previous versions, it is still not as nice as some contenders. The chest clip isn't as intuitive as some of the competition, and while it works fine, it isn't' our favorite.
The harness on the SlimFit All-in-One is super easy to adjust with a non-rethread style that operates smoothly by squeezing the lever at the top and sliding the entire headrest. The shoulder straps have 10 possible height positions for a good fit, and the crotch strap has three.
The LATCH anchors attach on the Slim high on the sides of the shell (above left) or under the front edge of the seat, and the tether clips high on the side—both locations sort of fail at keeping the straps and anchors out of the way of passengers. Not only are they uninspired, but they aren't very functional. The user manual stows in a pocket on the back (above right) of the seat within easy access even if the seat is installed.
The Graco SlimFit All-in-One cover is average for ease of removal. It can be a little tricky under the seat bottom, but it is manageable. The cover is machine washable but must be line dried. This process is probably best done overnight or when you know, you won't need the seat as drying times will vary based on your local climate.
The Graco SlimFit All-in-One is a good looking seat at first blush, but when you dive deeper, it isn't a standout in this metric compared to the competition. The overall padded is decent and supportive, but it isn't great and won't offer long term comfort on road trips cross country. It also comes with a collapsible cup holder.
The fabric is two styles with a tighter weave on the seat's body and a strange mesh style material on the edges. Neither is particularly skin-friendly, and gunk can easily collect in the mesh weave. The outer shell is mostly self-contained, and it looks good compared to other seats in the same price range. The bottom is smooth and shouldn't cause damage to vehicle seats. The overall fit and finish are nice for a Graco mid-range product, but overall it struggles to keep up with the options that give more attention to padding and fabric for comfort.
While weight for a convertible seat may not be as crucial as it is for an infant carrier, it can still factor into decision making if you travel or need to carry it. The Graco SlimFit All-in-One is 18.6 lbs, which is relatively lightweight for this group, but some weigh significantly less and score higher or have better crash test sensor readings.
— Juliet Spurrier, MD and Wendy Schmitz