In-depth baby product reviews led by a Pediatrician

Baby Trend EZ Flex-Loc Review

A budget-friendly seat with better head sensor crash results and easy LATCH installation
Baby Trend EZ Flex-Loc
Best Value Award
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Price:   $110 List | $109.99 at Amazon
Pros:  Inexpensive, good HIC score, easy to install with 2 methods
Cons:  Less padding, lower quality, harder to install with belt
Manufacturer:   Baby Trend
By Wendy Schmitz, and BabyGearLab Review Team  ⋅  Dec 21, 2021
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58
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#12 of 15
  • Crash Test - 20% 5.5
  • Ease of Install - LATCH - 20% 6.5
  • Ease of Install - Belt - 10% 5.5
  • Ease of Install -w/o Base - 5% 6.5
  • Ease of Use - 15% 4.9
  • Comfort/Quality - 15% 4.6
  • Weight/Size - 15% 7.0

The Skinny

The Baby Trend EZ Flex-Loc is an inexpensive, easy-to-install infant seat with average crash-test results. This budget-friendly seat is a good choice for families on a tight budget or for those looking for a second seat for a caregiver or less often used car. While it may be lacking in some of the nicer comfort-based features like thick padding and softer fabric, the Baby Trend gets the job done and is easy to install. The EZ isn't the best quality and it has some less than useful features like a frumpy canopy and harder to use chest clip. However, if the price is an issue and you need a seat you can depend on, then the EX might just fit the bill. For more of our favorite car seats, read our review that spans all car seat categories.

Editor's Note: This gear review was updated on December 20, 2021. It now includes more detailed information on testing done within the top-weighted metrics.

Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards Best Value Award Editors' Choice Award Editors' Choice Award Best Value Award  
Price $110 List
$109.99 at Amazon
$300 List
$299.99 at Amazon
$270 List
$269.99 at Amazon
$220 List
$219.99 at Amazon
$120 List
$99.99 at Amazon
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Pros Inexpensive, good HIC score, easy to install with 2 methodsBetter crash test results, anti-rebound bar, easy installReasonable price, better crash test results, super easy LATCH installEasy LATCH installation, better crash test results, priceLightweight, easy to carry, easy install without the base
Cons Less padding, lower quality, harder to install with beltHeavier, harder to install LATCH system, few strollers are compatibleHeavier, canopy/handle rubbingCoarse fabric, heavier, hard to install without the baseLower crash analysis results, harder to use, not as comfy
Bottom Line A budget-friendly seat with better head sensor crash results and easy LATCH installationA great all-around seat with good crash test results, but limited stroller optionsA really nice seat with better crash tests analysis and a reasonable price tag, but it could be too heavy for some usersCrash test results and ease of install with a nice price make it a good choice for most familiesBelow average results in most metrics despite a promising weight
Rating Categories Baby Trend EZ Flex-Loc Peg Perego Primo Vi... Chicco KeyFit 35 Chicco KeyFit 30 Graco SnugRide 35 L...
Crash Test (20%)
5.5
7.5
7.5
7.5
3.5
Ease Of Install LATCH (20%)
6.5
7.0
9.5
8.5
6.5
Ease Of Install Belt (10%)
5.5
9.0
7.0
5.5
6.5
Ease Of Install W O Base (5%)
6.5
9.5
7.0
4.0
7.5
Ease Of Use (15%)
4.9
6.6
7.1
6.6
5.2
Comfort Quality (15%)
4.6
8.1
6.5
4.7
4.7
Weight Size (15%)
7.0
6.0
5.0
5.0
8.0
Specs Baby Trend EZ Flex-Loc Peg Perego Primo Vi... Chicco KeyFit 35 Chicco KeyFit 30 Graco SnugRide 35 L...
Crash Test HIC Score 617 491 342 330 693
Crash Test Chest G Clip 51 46 51 50.5 53
Minimum Passenger Weight 4 lbs 4 lbs 4 lbs 4 lbs 4 lbs
Max Passenger Weight 30 lbs 35 lbs 35 lbs 30 lbs 35 lbs
Max Passenger Height 30" 32" 32" 30" 32"
Belt Routing Style European European European American American
Seat Weight 8.6 lbs 9.6 lbs 10.9 lbs 10.1 lbs 7.4 lbs
Recline Positions 4 Infinite 5 5 4
Shoulder Harness Positions 3 6 5 3 4
Crotch Strap Positions 1 1 1 1 2
Built in Lock Off No Yes Yes Yes No
Anti-rebound Device No Yes Yes Built in High Back Base High Back Base
Load Leg No No No No No
Locking Handle Positions 3 5 4 3 4
Allowed Handle Positions For Auto Travel Not Listed 1 for Base Install (even with the top of the seat),
1 for Seat Only Install (all the way forward)
Carry Position
Stationary Position
Rocking Position
Any Any
Head Support Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Newborn Insert Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
No Rethread Harness No Yes Yes No No
Onboard Manual Storage On the back of the seat towards the bottom. Stores in a hard flip down pocket on the back of the seat. Storage Compartment on front of the base. Storage Compartment on the front of the base. Clips under the base.
Level Indicator On Base None Bubble Vial Bubble Indicator Bubble Vial Weighted Wheel/Dial
Level Indicator On Seat Hanging Indicator Line On Decal Line on Decal Line On Decal Line On Decal

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Baby Trend company has been in the juvenile products business for over 26 years. They design many types of baby-centric gear, from diaper pails to car seats. The company offers affordable baby products with a lineup that includes innovative products like the first sit and stand stroller.

Performance Comparison



The EZ has fairly typical impact foam located in the headrest area...
The EZ has fairly typical impact foam located in the headrest area of the car carrier.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Crash Test


The EZ scores about average for crash test analysis. This seat complies with federal guidelines outlined in FMVSS 213 and is, therefore, considered safe with results below the maximum allowed benchmarks for the head and chest sensors.


The charts below show comparisons between the Baby Trend seat and the best scores in this review. The head sensor (HIC) best result goes to the Chicco Keyfit 30, with a result of 330. The Baby Trend result is 617, the highest result for the group (lower is better here, and the maximum allowed is 1000). The chart below shows all of the seat test results in this review.


The EZ has one of the highest HIC results in the review of 617. This...
The EZ has one of the highest HIC results in the review of 617. This graph shows a comparison of the EZ with the best in the group of 330 earned by the Chicco Keyfit 30.
Credit: BabyGearLab, MGA Research

The Cybex Aton 2 has the lowest force exerted on the chest (in black) with a score of 44, where the maximum allowed is 60. The EZ has a score of 51, which is almost average in the review. The chart below shows a comparison of the two results. The chart below shows all of the chest sensor test results for easy comparison.

The EZ g clip result is about average for the group with a 51, where...
The EZ g clip result is about average for the group with a 51, where 60 is the max allowable and the best in the group was a 44 (lower numbers are better) earned by the Cybex Aton 2.
Credit: BabyGearLab, MGA Research


Combining the two results hurt the Baby Trend's overall score as neither result was a standout.

LATCH installation for the EZ is one of the easiest installation...
LATCH installation for the EZ is one of the easiest installation methods in our tests.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Ease of Install - LATCH


The EZ earned a higher than average result for installation using LATCH compared to the rest of the competition.


The EZ has a side located seat angle indicator to help parents...
The base angle of the EZ can be altered using a push button.

The EZ has a useful level on the carrier's side (above left), and the recline can be adjusted using the button on the bottom of the base (above right), which is nicely placed and easy to use.

The LATCH connectors on the EZ have a push operated release to...
The EZ has a LATCH connector unlike any we've seen. It works well...

This seat has unique LATCH connectors that are easier to get on and off the anchors. We really liked the different design that is very user-friendly for those with weak fingers or smaller hands requiring less pressure than other styles of LATCH.

Installation of the EZ base using the vehicle belt is not as simple...
Installation of the EZ base using the vehicle belt is not as simple as LATCH or installation without the base in our tests.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Ease of Install - Belt


Installing the EZ with a vehicle belt isn't the best and is harder than much of the competition.


While it can be done and wasn't the worst of the group, it wouldn't be our top choice of installation method for this seat.

The EZ has an internal lock-off for installation using the vehicle...
The EZ has an internal lock-off for installation using the vehicle belt, but while easy to operate, it isn't the best in the group and some shifting still occurs.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

This seat has a belt lock-off built into the base, and it isn't hard to use, but it doesn't seem to lock the seat to the belt, and we experienced some shifting along the belt, which made it feel less stable. It also felt more stable when using the lap-only belt, as you might find in a center seat location, as opposed to the lap/shoulder combo commonly found on the side positions.

Installing the Baby Trend without the base utilizes the American...
Installing the Baby Trend without the base utilizes the American belt path method across the midway/foot of the carrier.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Ease of Install - Without the Base


INstalling the EX without the base is pretty straightforward and an installation method it performed well during testing.


The American belt path of the EZ is straightforward and easy to...
The American belt path of the EZ is straightforward and easy to utilize.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

While it didn't earn top marks, it is better than average and not challenging and uses the more straightforward American path with the seatbelt across the carrier's foot. The process is quick and user-friendly. It feels relatively stable once installed. All of this makes the EZ a potential contender for a travel car seat or use on public transportation by urbanites.

The canopy on the EZ is somewhat frumpy and t didn't stay fully open...
The canopy on the EZ is somewhat frumpy and t didn't stay fully open no matter how hard we tried.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Ease of Use


The EZ is average for ease of use with fewer features and less fancy additions than the more expensive competition.


The chest clip on the EZ is harder to operate than much of the...
The chest clip on the EZ is harder to operate than much of the competition. it isn't one of our favorites and we think it could be improved.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Harness


The buckle is somewhat stiff, but the chest clip is the real problem. The design isn't hand-friendly and wasn't as simple as much of the competition. The buckle is the nesting style that can take more effort to assemble.

The Flex-Loc has a harness tightening strap that isn't as smooth...
The Flex-Loc has a harness tightening strap that isn't as smooth pulling like some of the competition.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Tightening the harness isn't as smooth as it could be, but the release button is large and easy to push.

Adjusting the harness shoulder height is a rethread operation where you pull the straps of a back splitter and rethread them through different slots o the seatback before putting them back on the splitter. This process isn't hard, but it is more time-consuming than the non-rethread style, and it typically requires removing the baby from the carrier.

The handle on the EZ moves smoothly when depressing the two sides...
The handle on the EZ moves smoothly when depressing the two sides simultaneously.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Handle


The EZ has a uniquely shaped handle with a triangle-shaped padded grip in the middle. We appreciate the effort to increase the hold possibilities for comfort. The handle moves smoothly in three positions and doesn't rub the canopy in the upright position.

Carrier and Base Connection


Connecting the carrier to the base isn't hard, but it doesn't just fall into place like some of the competition. You have to use some force and apply pressure down to get the audible click.

The EZ user manual stows on the bottom of the carrier which is nice...
The EZ user manual stows on the bottom of the carrier which is nice if you travel without the base, but it doesn't seem very secure and we worry it could fall out or become damaged easily.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

LATCH Anchor and Manual Storage


The EZ has user manual storage on the bottom of the carrier. It's nice to have the manual on the carrier if you are using it sans base, but it isn't really secure in its design, and we worry it will fall out or get damaged thanks to lack of protection.

The quality and comfort of the EZ are somewhat sub-par but for the...
The quality and comfort of the EZ are somewhat sub-par but for the price, it can get the job done without trouble.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Comfort/Quality


The Baby Trend isn't the best for comfort or quality, with less padding and rougher fabric than most of the competition. However, given the lower price, the materials are better than you might accept.


The canopy on the EZ is somewhat frumpy looking, which would be okay if it stayed open when you moved it, but it doesn't. While minor, this is an attention to detail example that is true of most things on this seat. In general, this seat has some nice features, like the padded triangle grip on the handle, but it may not be one you can pass down to multiple children.

The carrier of the EZ is one of the lightest in the group making it...
The carrier of the EZ is one of the lightest in the group making it a potential contender for travel or commuting.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Weight


The EZ is one of the lighter carriers in the group, with a weight of 8.63 lbs. This weight makes it a potential candidate for travel or use without a base in an urban environment where carrying a base would be inconvenient.


While not the number one factor when choosing a seat, it can be helpful to consider if you travel frequently or what a travel seat.

Stroller Compatibility


The EZ is not compatible with many strollers outside the Baby Trend world. It will work with the Baby Trend Sit N' Stand Double, Baby Trend Navigator, and the Baby Trend Snap-N-Go EX Universal a frame stroller. None of these strollers performed well in our tests, and we are not big fans of the net and strap-in configuration of the Universal frame stroller.

Should You Buy the Baby Trend?


If your budget is very tight and you can't make it stretch or are looking for a second seat, the Baby trend is one for your short list of considerations. This seat has a low, low price, and (for the price) it offers better crash test and installation scores than some. While its overall score is lower than we'd like, we think it is the one to buy if you don't have the money for more.

What Other Infant Car Seat Should You Consider?


If you can find the funds or have help from friends or family, we prefer the Chicco Keyfit 30. This seat is budget-friendly (albeit more expensive than the Trend) and offers better crash test results, including one of the best HIC test results in the group.

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Wendy Schmitz, and BabyGearLab Review Team

Honest, objective reviews. Led by a Pediatrician.

BabyGearLab was founded by a Pediatrician Mom with a mission to provide a reliable, independent, source of information to new parents. Our experts have tested thousands of baby and kids products to share key performance, health, and safety findings. We spend tens of thousands of dollars crash testing car seats to inform our ratings. And, we combine our review work with gobs of expert parenting advice. To assure complete independence, we buy all the products we test ourselves. No sponsored content. No ads. Just real, honest, side-by-side testing by people who care.

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