You've chosen Graco as your primary car seat brand, and now it's time to pick the best convertible car seat for your children.
However, you cannot decide between the Graco SlimFit vs Extend2Fit car seat. So, how do you choose?
Well, both models are exceptional and offer the best possible benefits for your children and prolonged use.
But, there's only one king. And, who will be the winner? Stay tuned.
Graco Extend2Fit vs Graco SlimFit: Who's the King?
Design and Configurations
Both the Graco SlimFit and the Graco Extend2Fit are convertible car seats. However, there's a crucial difference between the two.
The Graco SlimFit is a 3-in-1 convertible car seat with three modes of use. On the other hand, the Graco Extended2Fit has only two ways of use.
Thus, the car seats offer the following purposes:
- rear-facing car seat for kids 4-40/50 pounds
- forward-facing car seat for kiddos 22-65 pounds
- high back belt-positioning booster seat for kids up to 100 pounds of maximum weight limit.
As you can see, the Graco SlimFit has an additional booster seat mode, while the Graco Extend2Fit doesn't have that option.
But, the Graco Extend2Fit is a crucial convertible car seat due to its extended rear-facing mode. It supports the kids up to 50 pounds to drive in the rear-facing position longer.
The Graco SlimFit doesn't have the extended rear-facing position in the infant car seat since it supports kids only to 40 pounds of the weight limit.
However, since the SlimFit uses all three car seat positions, it is still slightly advanced since it will save money. In addition, you don't need another car seat for the booster mode.
But, it's not a 4-in-1 convertible car seat, as it doesn't have the backless booster mode. If you prefer that kind of car seat, you should go for the Graco 4Ever.
The Graco 4Ever has all the features an all-in-one car seat should have so that it might suit you better.
The safety experts recommend you should keep your little ones rear-facing as long as possible for maximum child's safety, and the Graco Extend2Fit is a perfect car seat for your needs.
In addition, the Graco SlimFit convertible car seat weighs 19.47 pounds and measures 21.5 x 19.9 x 25.5 inches, while the Graco Extend2Fit weighs 19 pounds, with the following measurements: 22.1 x 19.2 x 25.2 inches.
There's not too much difference between the seats. Both convertible car seats are narrow in design and specifications to fit three across.
But, as the name suggests, the SlimFit has a slimmer design compared to other similar car seats, so that it will be an excellent unit for smaller cars.
Still, you must check if the seats easily adjust to your vehicle and find the best angle for the installation.
I will leave the final decision to you, but I would go with the Graco SlimFit due to the three-in-one system.
Both convertible car seats are excellent for safety standards. They both meet and exceed all FMVSS, NHTSA, and IIHS safety features and rules, undergoing rigorous crash tests.
But, what are our top safety features? Let's see.
Both car seats are Graco Protect-Plus engineered. They use the combination of the most rigorous crash tests to protect your children inside, rear, frontal, and rollover crashes.
Most car seats cannot really protect your kids from rollover crashes, but Graco generally stands out.
Both models use the steel-reinforced frame, so the child seat has increased stability and safety while on the road.
The seats will slow and decrease the movements. So, your child seated in the restraint system will be fixed and stable for more security.
Of course, they use multiple layers of side-impact protection, the EPS energy-absorbing foam, the plush head, and removable infant inserts to accommodate your babies for more security.
Even in a car accident, only the shell or frame might crack. The child remains intact, safe, and sound. So, the car seats are side-impact tested for maximum safety.
But, the Graco Extend2Fit still offers a more prolonged period of the child rear-facing mode in the rear-facing seat. It additionally supports your kiddo in the infant seat, unlike the SlimFit.
So, if you want your baby to sit rear-rear facing longer, you should go for the Graco Extend2Fit.
Of course, both car seats are bacteria-resistant, and both use the five-point harness systems to secure and support crucial body parts.
Even your sleeping baby cannot slip away with the five-point harness system. So you don't need to bother about safety features at all.
So, you can choose according to your preferences, as both seats use the same system technology to keep your growing children safe and sound on the road.
As with other Graco models, you first have to choose the proper car seat mode - rear-facing, forward-facing, or booster car seat.
Once you pick the proper mode, it's time to install your convertible car seat into the back seat of your vehicle.
If your child must sit rear-facing in the font, ensure you turn the airbag off! If not, it will cause severe injuries and fatal consequences.
The next step is to determine if you will install the seats with the LATCH system or the vehicle seat belt system.
The seats have the same InRight LATCH system with LATCH connecting hooks and lower anchors to tighten the car seat and make it stable and fixed in the vehicle.
The lower anchors have specific attachments, so ensure you read the vehicle and car seat manuals to find the proper fit.
And, when using forward-facing car seats in general, don't forget the top tether anchors.
The top tethers are crucial parts of forward-facing car seats, as they prevent the seats from going forward four to six inches.
So, you must check everything - the seat belt, lower anchors, and the top tether to ensure your car seat is safe and secure for more robust use.
Or, you can use the vehicle's seat belt, thread the seat belt through the belt path, and tighten them to ensure the seat is correct and fixed.
However, both seats offer a pretty simple and easy installation, so you just have to follow all steps to finish it quickly.
But, some models might include the integrated belt lock-off, such as the DLX model, or similar Graco seats, so pay attention to that too.
Overall, both seats offer effortless and straightforward installation, so you don't need to waste too much time with the configuration. So, you can choose either of the seats.
Comfort Benefits and Convenience
Both car seats provide a no-rethread harness system. In addition, the system offers adjustable harness straps as your child grows.
So, many parents agree they will keep their children comfortable. The seats also use the ten recline positions of the headrest.
However, regarding the wholesome recline positions, the Graco Extend2Fit convertible car seat uses six recline positions, while the SlimFit has only four recline positions.
I vote for the Graco Extend2Fit.
Both models have an easy-to-read level indicator to help you find the proper angle for your installation and car seat settings. This is especially vital for the rear-facing infant seat mode.
Both offer excellent car seat work when you transform one car seat mode to another.
But, the key difference is that you can install and use the SlimFit as a booster once the child outgrows the convertible car seat (rear and forward-facing modes.)
But, the Extend2Fit has extra padding and an extension panel. The extension panel has four positions, allowing additional leg room when your child is rear-facing.
So, if you want more paddings, the Extend2Fit is the right seat for you.
The seats also offer the ideal harness storage to keep it close and easily accessible when you need it.
The Extended2Fit has fuss-free, while the SlimFit uses the Integrated harness storage compartment.
So, the result is a tie, and I will leave it to you to estimate a better pick. I know it's challenging. But, the Extend2Fit has more recline positions, which may help you choose better.
A cup holder is a must-have part of any car seat. It makes your kids more focused on their stomachs and you more concentrated on the road.
Luckily, both models use dual integrated cup holders. I like seats with dual cup holders the most.
The SlimFit has two removable cup holders. They are specific for space-saving options.
You can fold them away and create more room for more comfort and coziness for your children, especially if you have two or three seats in your vehicle's back.
The Extend2Fit also has two cup holders that you can easily attach and detach when you need/don't need them.
However, many parents find it challenging to quickly fit the sippy cups in the cup holders. The main reason for this is that the holders are square rather than round.
Or, if you fit the cups, they may not be stable and stand upright. So, you must fit them snugly for the best and proper match. Be careful when choosing.
Cleaning and Maintenance
Both seats offer a machine-washable cover. Namely, the SlimFit uses the washable car seat cover, while the Extend2Fit has the whole seat cushion removable, not only the seat cover.
And the best part is that you don't need to thoroughly remove the harness to wash the car seat.
So, what do you say? What will your final choice be? I don't find colossal differences so I will leave it to you again.
Traveling With Graco: Mission (Im)possible?
Nothing's impossible for Graco! The same goes for our two competitors.
Due to their narrower design and reduced weight, the car seat models will fit your vehicles, and you can set off an adventure with them.
They are bulky but not as heavy as similar models weighing more than 20 or even 30 pounds. So, they'll be more convenient for traveling.
So, you can install them with the LATCH technology for the best use on the plane. But, can you choose the best car seat? Is that also a mission impossible? I bet it is.
What about pricing?
Well, Graco is a relatively affordable car seat brand for all parents so that everyone can find the right seat for their needs.
As you'll see, the SlimFit seat costs $219, while the Extend2Fit seat has a price tag of $234. It's not a big deal because it's a slight difference.
But, when paying, it would be better to pick the 3-in-1 seat for a lesser price, as you combine well. And, you don't need to obtain an additional booster seat due to the built-in mode.
The SlimFit seat seems more economical than the Extend2Fit. What do you think?
Graco SlimFit Seat: Pros and Cons
- Safety mechanism
- Quick installation
- Three modes of use - more than the Extend2Fit seat
- Machine-washable car seat cover
- No-rethread harness
- Ten years of lifespan
- Not so slim - there are other narrower variants of such seat model
- Less reclining than the Extend2Fit
- No extension panel
Graco Extend2Fit Seat: Pros and Cons
- Extended use of the child rear-facing, unlike the SlimFit seat
- More recline positions than the SlimFit
- Ten years of lifespan
- FAA-approved, just like the SlimFit
- The effortless and instant setup process
- Steel frame for more stability
- Harness storing options
- Two buckle positions
- No belt lock-off system
- More space-taking in the rear-facing method
- The cover is tricky to remove and re-attach in the front part
Frequently Asked Questions
Which Graco car seat is the slimmest?
Is the Graco Extend2Fit for newborns?
Yes, it is. It fits newborns and small babies, but it must do them correctly. For this reason, the seat uses a specific head pillow and body support for maximum comfort and proper fit.
You must use the body support when the baby's shoulders are below the bottom harness slots, and you also must remove it when the E2F is turned forward-facing.
Can the Graco SlimFit go on an airplane?
Yes, it can, but only in the forward and rear-facing harness mode. You can't use the booster car seat on the plane.
You will find the label stating the seat is convenient for motor vehicles and aircraft.
Is the Graco SlimFit rear-facing?
The seat comes forward-facing, but you can install it rear-facing. You can install it rear-facing in recline positions 1 and 2.
The recline angle ranges between 30 and 45 degrees. Still, a more upright angle is needed for older toddlers to have good head and neck control.
How long can a child use the Graco Extend2Fit?
Your child can use it for ten years, as it has a longer lifespan. You can find the expiration date and the serial number on the label on the seat or in the instruction manual.
What are the height and weight limits for the Graco Extend2Fit?
The height limit is 49 inches, and the weight limit is 65 pounds.
Does the Graco SlimFit have a base?
Yes, it does. The seat comes with an adjustable base with four recline positions.
Does the Graco SlimFit fit three across?
Yes, it does. It's the slimmest Graco seat, so it easily fits three across in the back seat of your motor vehicle. In addition, all kids will be cozy and accessible in the specific restraint systems without pressure.
Does the Graco SlimFit convert into a booster?
Yes, it does. The seat converts into a high back belt-positioning booster, supporting kids up to 100 pounds of maximum weight limit.
What's Your Final Winner? The Graco SlimFit or the Graco Extend2Fit?
Are you ready? It's time to pick your final winner! So, let's see.
It's, in fact, pretty challenging to select only one model. However, due to the 3-in1 design and more economical price, I would go for the SlimFit.
In addition, the seat has the narrowest dimensions, so it fits three across, although it's a booster.
And, it doesn't lack any of the features an ideal seat should have.
So, what else can you look for?