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Quick List: Best Car Seat for a 7 Year Old
1. Best overall: Graco 4Ever DLX ($329.99) – 120-pound weight limit, 4 modes to use, can be turned into a backless booster for big 7 year olds.
2. Best extended rear-facing: Graco Extend2Fit ($234.99) – good for 7 year old around 55 pounds in 5 point-harness. 50-lb rear-facing weight limit.
3. Best narrow convertible car seat: KidsEmbrace SpideMan ($199.99) – 18.5″ width, 5-point harness booster.
4. Narrow booster seat with 5-point harness – Chicco MyFit ($199.99) – 17.5″, 54-inch highest harness height.
5. Narrow high back booster seat: Graco TurboBooster ($59.99) – 16.5″, budget-friendly for most families with big kids.
What car seat should a 7 year old be in?
Forward-facing child restraint systems should be the best car seat for 7 year old big kids. If you want a more specific answer, then convertible, booster, and all-in-one car seats are good options for 7 year olds.
Some parents may wonder: do 7 year olds need a car seat? Yes of course.
The AAP and NHTSA advise that children younger than 8 years should ride in a car seat for protection in the vehicle.
This is also the common rule in most of all 50 US states. The government regulations require parents to keep their children in a car seat until they’re big enough to use the seat belt as adults. Most states’ laws make it clear – children should ride in a car seat until he or she is 8 years old or 57 inches tall.
So, not just 7 year olds, kids who are not appropriate to use a seat belt should ride in the car seats even if they are 8 years or older but less than 4 feet 9 inches in height.
The car seat is the best for a 7 year old kid for protection and safety to travel in the vehicles.
To make it simple, we’ve picked 9 of the best car seats for 7 year olds and categorized them into three weight groups (50-65 pounds, 65-80 pounds, 80-120 pounds):
Best Car Seat for 7 Year Old Boys and Girls
Chicco NextFit Zip
Diono Cambria 2 XL
Britax Grow with You ClickTight
Graco 4Ever DLX
*Prices listed above are based on the listing price when this post was published. It may change due to Amazon promotion.
Take a closer look at our recommendations by viewing the best car seat for 7 year old in the categories below.
Best Car Seat for 7 Year Old by Bonus Features
- Convertible Car Seat – Graco Extend2Fit (50 lbs rear-facing weight limit)
Best Convertible Car Seat for 7 Year Old
#1 Best Car Seat for 7 Year Old 55 Pounds
Why We Recommend It:
Graco Extend2Fit is one of the best car seats for a 7 year old. Thanks to its steel-reinforced frame, the car seat has a long lifespan of 10 years.
That means if you have purchased it since your baby’s birth, keep using it as the car seat for 7 year old as well, as long as they don’t exceed the upper weight limit of 65 lbs in the 5-point harness forward-facing mode.
The Graco Extend2Fit also works as an infant car seat to accommodate newborn babies, even preemies as light as 4 lbs. The supportive inserts are included in the package for small babies, helping save money to purchase additional accessories.
The 50-lb weight limit for rear-facing mode is a very appealing feature for parents. It means that your child can stay rear-facing longer in the Graco Extend2Fit, at least passing the 2-year-old age line that AAP and NHTSA suggest staying rear-facing, just like the next recommendations – Chicco NextFit Zip.
The Graco Extend2Fit is really a good car seat designed to grow with your child, at least before they grow to 7 years old if they’re at average weight or height.
It features a 10-position headrest adjustment, enabling the headrest to protect your child all the time in the growing days.
10 position adjustment generally means 5 levels of the upright from the bottom, and you can always find one position that is suitable for a boy or a girl’s height at 7 years of age.
The No-Rethread Simply Safe Adjust Harness System is a very wonderful feature to add points to the Graco Extend2Fit’s easy-to-use performance.
It allows the headrest and harness to adjust together in one motion and you don’t need to take the time to adjust the harness exactly for the right position, making it a great 7 year old car seat.
Cup holders are very useful accessories if you’re planning to take your child on long-distance trips in a car. Your child can help themselves to easily get the snacks and drinks from the cup holders during driving.
It should be much easier for big kids to fetch things from the cup holder, making it the best car seat for a 7 year old.
Worried about the kids spotting the car seat? Don’t need it. The seat pad is removable and machine washable. You can take it off for washing if it gets dirty. You don’t even need to wash it by hand.
#2 Best Car Seat for 7 Year Old 55 Pounds
Chicco NextFit Zip
Why We Recommend It:
It’s recommended to keep the littles in the current staged car seat as long as possible. This discipline works well for a boy or girl at 7 years old.
Parents should stick with the forward-facing harness until your 7-year-age child exceeds the harness height or weight limits.
If they don’t outgrow the height or weight limits of the Chicco NextFit Zip, you should still place your child in front-facing mode.
Let’s say that, the Chicco NextFit Zip should be a great car seat for 7 year old if the boy or girl does not grow over 57-inches in height or 65-pound weight.
The NextFit Zip provides more than that, thanks to its unique designed features.
The combination of the exclusive SuperCinch force-multiplying tightener and LockSure belt-locking system makes it much easier to install the car seat correctly and securely with an appropriate tight fit.
This ensures both safe and comfortable rides, making it one of the best car seats for 7 year olds.
Its unique DuoGuard improves the car seat’s security level by providing two layers of head and torso protection with a deep rigid reinforced-steel-frame shell and EPS energy-absorbing foam.
From this point, it’s considered one of the safest car seats for 7 year old.
You don’t need to worry about your child’s comfort in the NextFit Zip. It features a 9-position headrest and 9-point reclines, meaning you can always find a perfect fit for growing children, even 7 years old big kids.
The NextFit Zip is the very basic entry-level model from the Chicco company, if you need more advanced features, you may find a premium one from the same NextFit series.
5-Point Harness Car Seat for 7 Year Old
#1 Best Harnessed Booster Car Seat for 7 Year Old
Why We Recommend It:
The Graco Tranzitions is a great car seat for 7 year old who should ride forward-facing, as it can be only used in front-facing for big kids.
It lacks the rear-facing mode for small toddlers. The manufacturer boasts of its design to grow with your child, combing harness and booster mode into one.
When used in harness mode, the Graco Tranzitions is able to fit a child between 22-65 pounds with an upper height limit of 49 inches.
Parents should stick with the forward-facing harness mode until their child outgrows the harness height or weight limits, as a 5-point harness provides better protection in the car seat in case of any crashes.
All the car seats sold in the US are required to pass through the basic crash tests with a 5-point harness.
However, if your child exceeds the weight or height limits at 7 years old, you should move them to the booster mode.
The Graco Tranzitions 3-in-1 allows for an effortless switch from the harness mode to a high back booster or even backless booster, making it the best car seat for a 7 year old in this type.
For instance, Graco Tranzitions 3-in-1 = 5-point harness + highback booster + backless booster;
KidsEmbrace = 5-point harness + highback booster;
Diono Cambria 2 XL = highback + backless booster;
But Diono Cambria 2 XL has a higher weight-height-limit – up to 120 pounds and 63 inches.
If you’re planning to use the Tranzitions as a booster seat for 7 year or 6 year olds, make sure the included body inserts and harness are removed and the car seat is installed using the seat belt following the user manual.
If not, use the snack and drinks to attract them. The two cup holders – with each on one side – keep your child’s snacks and drinks in easy reach to cheer them up on the journey. Great 7 year old car seat!
They’re removable for cleaning. So does the seat pad, which is made of machine-washable fabric, saving parents’ time and energy.
#2 Best Harnessed Booster Car Seat for 7 Year Old
Why We Recommend It
KidsEmbrace provides two modes – a 5-point harness and a belt-positioning booster, to ride big kids at 7 years old.
If your kid grows at an average rate, they might not exceed the average weight- 50.5 pounds for boys and 49.5 pounds for girls, and the height – of 48 inches for boys and 47.7 inches for girls.
The KidsEmbrace is able to ride a child between 22-65 lbs and 29”-49” in height in 5-point harness mode.
If your boy or girl does not exceed the 65-pound weight limit or 49-inch height limit at 7 years of age, he or she should stick with a forward-facing harness until they’re ready for a booster seat.
It’s a common rule for all best car seats for 7 year olds with a 5-point harness, no matter whether it is convertible or booster. The manufacturer confirmed that the car seat provides side impact protection with a 5-point harness as they have tested that, but not tested in booster mode.
Big kids growing at a faster rate may need to use the belt-positioning booster at their 7 years old.
In this mode, the KidsEmbrace can ride a child between 40-100 lbs and 38”-57” in height, very similar to the Graco Tranzitions‘ weight and height range.
The KidsEmbrace car seat is very popular among the kids and parents, for its unique Marvel-hero-subjected seat pad, which is also one important reason we listed it here. Who does not like to stay with a Marvel hero (even if it’s virtual in a picture)? This is a great idea to increase your kid’s will in the car seat.
The included two cup holders on both sides provide the most convenience for a 7-year-old child to get their snacks and drinks effortlessly. Parents sitting aside in the back seat can also enjoy the treats for a happy time with their child during the travels.
Best Booster Car Seat for 7 Year Old
#1 Best Booster Car Seat for a 7 Year Old
Diono Cambria 2 XL
Why We Recommend It
Dionois the best booster seat for a 7 year old big kid after they outgrow their convertible car seats. It’s a 2-in-1 booster, including both the highback and backless modes.
If you haven’t bought a 3-in-1 or 4-in-1 multi-functional car seat to ride your littles or you need to use them for smaller babies, you may purchase a booster as an alternative – they’re cheaper and lightweight.
Not like small toddlers that need to stay in a harness-protected car seat, a 7 years old child is safe to ride in a booster that fits kids weighing from 40-120 pounds approx. 4-12 years old.
If you still worry about the car seat’s security, starting from a highback booster is a good idea.
Both modes have a higher weight and height limit – 120-lb over 100-lb and 63-inch over 57-inch. If you’re in pursuit of higher weight and height limits, Graco 4Ever DLX is also a good option.
When working as a belt-positioning highback booster, it grows with your child with a unique become-to-large design.
The 11 headrest positions and 2 recline positions ensure the car seat adapts quickly to growing children.
Furthermore, there is a simple-to-use dial on the back that allows you to adjust the width of the seat up to 20-inch wide and add up to 6.5 inches in height to the headrest.
This smart design provides 69% increased space to keep your child comfortable in the car seat, with plenty of room for shoulders, hips, and legs.
This allows your child to stay in the high back booster as long as possible, reducing the chance that your child asks to switch to the backless mode soon.
It’s better to keep your child in the current stage and use the best-fit car seat for a longer time, just like that when your child is in the rear-facing car seat.
However, if your child is ready to use it as a backless booster seat at 7 years old, it’s okay if they meet the 40-pound minimum height requirement. After all, big kids won’t want to stay in a back-supported car seat when they see others not stay in a high-back booster.
The only accessory that remained from changing high back to backless booster is the cup holders on both sides. They’re good to carry your child’s snacks and drinks. After all, 7 years old kids still love to enjoy a happy time in the vehicle.
Best Front-facing Car Seat for 7 Year Old
#1 Best front-facing car seat for a 7 year old
Graco 4Ever DLX 4-in-1 Car Seat
Why We Recommend It
The Graco 4Ever DLX is one of the best all-in-one car seats for 7 year olds to ride front-facing, no matter what modes you want to use for them: convertible, high back booster, or backless booster.
Just as its name indicates, it combines 4 modes: the 40-pound weight limit is friendly for newborn babies and small toddlers. Next is the 5-point harness mode for 7 year olds in small size; Then are the highback and backless modes for 7 year olds big kids, or 8 year olds, 9 year olds, or even 10 year olds.
It combines all other car seats’ features:
If your boy or girl is not over 65-pound in weight or 49 inches in height, then you can use it as a 5-point harness car seat for 7 year old.
But if your kid grows faster than the peer and exceeds the limit at 7 years old, it’s better to switch to the booster mode.
The Graco 4Ever 4-in-1 supports both the high back and backless booster, with a separate weight limit of 100 pounds and 120 pounds, making it the best car seat for 7 year old.
The 4Ever 4-in-1 comes with the common features that most Graco car seats have. The Simply Safe Adjust Harness System and 10-position headrests let parents adjust the harness and headrest at the same time in the same direction.
The InRight LATCH system and 6 reclines (some features 3 or 4) for easy and correct installation. ProtectPlus Engineered to pass through the strictest-level standards of crash test from frontal, side, rear, and rollover. And the 10 years of long-lasting lifespan, thanks to the steel-reinforced frame.
It also has newly improved functions. The Rapid Remove cover consists of several departure parts, that can be removed in one minute for machine washing.
The best car seats for 7 year olds should be easy to be cleaned. Graco 4Ever DLX completely meets this rule! And it’s also very safe.
The integrated belt lock-off provides the parents the best convenience to install the car seat easily and correctly.
And the rubberized fuss-free harness storage compartments to store the harness and buckles to provide your children the best comfort when needed.
As an all-in-one car seat, the Graco 4Ever 4-in-1 is a good money saver, but they’re not 100% perfect in doing every single task as a rear-facing, forward-facing convertible, and booster.
This does not mean it’s not safe but quite the opposite, they’re as safe as those specialized car seats. But it’s just large, bulky, and heavy, lacking the convenience of a detachable carrier. That’s the common question all the multifunctional car seats may have.
#2 Best Front-facing Car Seat for 7 Year Old
Maxi-Cosi Pria 3-in-1 Car Seat
Why We Recommend It
Maxi-Cosi Pria is another great all-in-one car seat for a 7 year old boy or girl well in two modes – harness convertible and booster.
But you should pay close attention to your kid’s weight and height at their 7 years of age and make sure they don’t exceed the upper weight and height limits in both convertible and booster modes.
Children at 7 years old with average weight and height may not exceed the limits, but that might happen for big kids who grow a bit faster than their peers, especially the height limit that comes first in most cases.
The Maxi-Cosi Pria fits children between 29-49 inches in the forward-facing mode and kids between 43-52 inches in booster mode.
Looking at the table of weight and height for children from 1 month to 12 years old, you’ll find that 7-year-old children are as high as 48-inch for boys and 47.7-inch for girls, on average. That’s very close to the forward-facing harness’s 49-inch height limit.
Big kids of 7-year-age may outgrow the forward-facing harness and you should switch to booster mode for them.
Safety is always important for your child to ride in a car seat.
The Maxi-Cosi Pria features a thicker headrest that provides side-impact protection. The headrest is adjustable at 5 levels of height and can always fit your growing child, no matter in the harness convertible or booster mode.
The Maxi-Cosi Pria also provides supreme comfort to your child to make them not tired of trips in the vehicle, thanks to the premium-fabric cushioned headrest and seat pad. It’s evitable that the cover gets dirty, especially if your child likes to drink and eat in the seat.
But parents don’t need to worry about it, because the cover is removable and machine washable. This is another way to keep the seat clean and your child comfortable.
The Maxi-Cosi Pria is not a cheap model, but it still receives a lot of praise from parents’ appraise and is a good choice on Amazon. A wide weight range might be one reason – but most 3-in-1 car seats coming with a booster mode can do this.
The most influential factor might be high-end looks and premium fabrics. But if you have enough budget, you may give it a shot.
Compare Best Car Seat for 7 Year Old
Comparison by weight limit
|Weight Limit||Car Seat||Price||Height Limit|
|65 pounds||Graco Extend2Fit||$211.99||49 in.|
|65 pounds||Chicco NextFit Zip||$299.99||49 in.|
|100 pounds||Graco Tranzitions 3-in-1||$109.99||57 in.|
|100 pounds||KidsEmbrace 2-in-1||$149.99||57 in.|
|100 pounds||Maxi Cosi Pria All-in-one||$299.99||57 in.|
|120 pounds||Graco 4Ever DLX 4-in-1||$309.99||57 in.|
|120 pounds||Diono Cambria 2 XL||$99.99||63 in.|
Comparison by height limit
|Height Limit||Car Seat||Price||Weight Limit|
|49 in.||Graco Extend2Fit||$211.99||65 pounds|
|49 in.||Chicco NextFit Zip||$299.99||65 pounds|
|57 in.||Graco Tranzitions 3-in-1||$109.99||100 pounds|
|57 in.||KidsEmbrace 2-in-1||$149.99||100 pounds|
|57 in.||Maxi Cosi Pria All-in-one||$299.99||100 pounds|
|57 in.||Graco 4Ever DLX 4-in-1||$309.99||120 pounds|
|63 in.||Diono Cambria 2 XL||$99.99||120 pounds|
Comparison by prices
|Rank||Price||Car Seat||Weight Limit||Height Limit||Stage|
|1||$99.99||Diono Cambria 2 XL||120 pounds||63 in.||1 stage|
|2||$109.99||Graco Tranzitions 3-in-1||100 pounds||57 in.||2 stages|
|3||$149.99||KidsEmbrace 2-in-1||100 pounds||57 in.||2 stages|
|4||$211.99||Graco Extend2Fit||65 pounds||49 in.||2 stages|
|5||$299.99||Chicco NextFit Zip||65 pounds||49 in.||2 stages|
|6||$299.99||Maxi Cosi Pria All-in-one||100 pounds||57 in.||3 stages|
|7||$309.99||Graco 4Ever DLX 4-in-1||120 pounds||57 in.||3 stages|
Car Seats For 7 Year Olds Law
6 Years Old Rules
States that require children under six years old to use an appropriate restraint system. These states have had no clear rules for riding 7 years old. This possibly means that 7 years olds don’t need a car seat in these states.
However, it’s strongly recommended to use an appropriate car seat for your boy or girl at their 7 years of age. After all, most multi-stage car seats have a long lifespan of more than 7 years.
- Alabama – under six years old to use a size-appropriate restraint system
- Arkansas – younger than 6 years of age and less than 60 pounds should be secured in a proper child restraint system.
- Idaho – who is six (6) years of age or younger, child safety restraint
- Iowa – 6 through 17 years use a child restraint or seat belt
- Montana – under 6 years of age and weighs less than 60 pounds, a child safety restraint.
- Nevada – less than 6 years of age and who weighs 60 pounds or less a child restraint system.
7 Years Old / 8 Years Old/ 9 Years Old Rules
- Alaska – 4 through 7 years who are at least 57 inches or 65+ pounds; 7 through 15 who are shorter than 57 inches or weigh less than 65 pounds should use a booster seat.
- Arizona – each passenger who is at least five years of age, who is under eight years of age and who is not more than four feet nine inches tall to be restrained in a child restraint system.
- California – 7 years and younger who are less than 57 inches must be in an appropriate child passenger restraint system – 4 through 7 years in a booster seat.
- Colorado – 4 through 7 years in a booster seat
- Connecticut – 5-7 years or between 40-60 pounds in a forward or rear-facing child restraint or a booster seat secured with a lap and shoulder belt.
- Delaware – 7 years and younger and 65 pounds in weight or less child safety seat or booster seat
- Georgia – under eight years of age provide for the proper restraint of such child in a child passenger restraint system.
- Hawaii– 4 years through 7 years must be in a child restraint or booster seat.
- Illinois – under the age of 8 years, appropriate child restraint system.
- Indiana – under the age of 8 years, appropriate child restraint system.
- Kansas – for a child under the age of seven but at least four years of age, or who weighs less than 80 pounds but weighs at least 40 pounds, a child booster seat; or for a child seven years of age but under the age of 14 or who weighs more than 80 pounds, a safety belt
- Kentucky – under 8 years of age, between 40-57 inches in height in a booster.
- Louisiana – at least 4 years old can use a booster, this includes 7 year olds.
- Maine – The operator shall ensure that a child who weighs less than 80 pounds, who is less than 57 inches in height and who is less than 8 years of age is properly secured in a belt positioning seat or other child restraint system.
- Maryland – Under 8 years old and less than 57″ in height, appropriate child restraint system.
- Massachusetts – Under 8 years old and less than 57″ in height, appropriate child restraint system.
- Michigan – Under 8 years old and less than 57″ in height, appropriate child restraint system.
- Minnesota – Under 8 years old and less than 57″ in height, appropriate child restraint system.
- Mississippi – 7 years and older who either weigh 65 pounds or more or who are 57 inches or taller, seat belt.
- Missouri – 4 through 7 years who weigh at least 40 pounds but less than 80 pounds and who are 4’9″ or shorter, in a booster seat.
- Nebraska – 7 years and younger in a child safety seat.
- New Hampshire – less than 7 years of age, child restraint system.
- New Jersey – younger than 8 years and less than 57 inches, in a booster seat
- New Mexico – children seven years of age through twelve years of age shall be properly secured in a child passenger restraint device or by a seat belt.
- New York – all back seat passengers of such vehicle who are age four or older but under age eight, an appropriate child restraint system or in a lap safety belt
- North Carolina – 7 years and younger and less than 80 pounds, appropriate child restraint system.
- North Dakota – 7 years and younger and less than 57 inches, appropriate child restraint system.
- Ohio – 4 through 7 years who weigh 40 pounds or more and who are shorter than 57 inches in a child restraint or booster seat
- Oklahoma – 4 through 7 years, if not taller than 4 feet 9 inches, in a child restraint or booster seat
- Oregon – 7 or younger: more than 40 pounds but 4 feet and 9 inches or less must be in a booster seat
- Pennsylvania – 4 years or older but under 8 years in a booster seat.
- Rhode Island – under 8 years old and less than 57 inches and less than 80 pounds in an appropriate child restraint system; 7 years and younger who either weigh 80 pounds or more or who are at least 57 inches tall; 8 through 17 in seat belt.
- South Carolina – children 4 and older who outgrow forward-facing child restraint must be in belt positioning booster using lap/shoulder belts until child is at least 8 years or at least 57 inches.
- Tennessee– Children age four (4) through age eight (8), and measuring less than four feet nine inches (4’9″) in height, must be secured in a belt-positioning booster seat system,
- Texas – A person commits an offense if the person operates a passenger vehicle, transports a child who is younger than eight years of age, unless the child is taller than four feet, nine inches, and does not keep the child secured during the operation of the vehicle in a child passenger safety seat system.”
- Utah – a child who is under the age of eight or who is less than 57 inches tall must be secured in a car seat or booster seat
- Vermont – a child eight through 17 years of age shall be restrained in a safety belt system or a child passenger restraining system.
- Virginia -all children under 8 to be properly secured in a child safety seat or booster seat,
- Washington -4 years or older, who is under four feet nine inches tall must be properly secured in a child booster seat. A child may continue to be properly secured in a child booster seat until the vehicle lap and shoulder seat belts fit properly, typically when the child is between the ages of eight and twelve years of age.
- West Virginia – all children under 8 to be properly secured in a child safety seat or booster seat.
- Wisconsin – Children must be in a booster seat until they reach age 8, more than 80 pounds in weight, or more than 4 ft. 9 in. tall.
- Wyoming – no person shall operate a passenger vehicle in this state unless each child who is a passenger in that vehicle and who has not reached his ninth birthday is properly secured in a child safety restraint system in a seat of the vehicle other than the front seat.
4 Tips Buying Guide for Best Car Seat for 7 Year Old
Three are some most important things you should consider when you’re planning to purchase a perfect car seat for a 7-year-old boy or girl. This buyer guide includes four useful tips for you to check out so that you will be able to eliminate car seats faster.
Over the past few years of raising up three kids, I’ve reviewed 20~30 car seats. So I’ve accumulated a lot of knowledge on choosing the right child restraint system. I want to share with you the top highlights so you can pick up a perfect child safety seat as fast and efficiently as I.
Safety is still the top priority for all parents and 7-year-old kids. You should not skimp out on this, instead, you will want to get the most protection you can get.
If you have read my post on crash tests of child safety seats, you’ll know that all car seats on the market are safe enough because they’ve passed the mandatory safety tests. These options we reviewed all meet or exceed the basic standards – Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 213.
All car seats have front and rear impact protection. More and more car seats feature side impact protection, mostly between 1 and 3 layers with the 5-point harness, which is necessary for toddlers and preschoolers younger than 5 years old.
A few models may come with extra features like Graco having their exclusive ProtectPlus in their premium models with rollover protection.
This is second on my list. Car seats are expensive, and you might have to buy multiple ones, adding much to your budget list. But you can save money without compromising on safety by choosing a model that has great weight and height limits, Graco 4Ever DLX 4 in 1 car seat for example.
These car seats are lifers and have a long lifespan with great durability for 6 and 7-year-olds. So they are the last seats that you will ever have to buy. The longer a child can use the car seat, the more money you’re saving.
The installation is the most problematic with car seats. Some require you to be a professional athlete to get it to wiggle proof.
Every mom or dad can be a professional if they have installed at least 5 car seats in different brands because they meet different cases and have a solution to achieve a proper installation. It’s important to ensure your boy or girl’s safety.
Luckily I’ve picked those car seats which are easy to mount. If you have enough budget, expensive models from Britax will be great choices, like the Britax Grow with You ClickTight and Britax One4Life. They feature the company’s unique ClickTight technique.
Where you place the car seat is important to ensure your child’s safety. Not all spots are equal.
The safest place for your child is in the center of the back seat in the car.
If you have a lap-only seat belt in the center of the back row, you should NOT install the booster seat for 7 year olds in that position. While most 7 year olds may sit in a booster seat, parents should keep a close eye on this tip.
If this is your case – a lap-only belt in the rear middle, place the 7 year old car seats behind the driver or passenger, depending on which side is more convenient to you.
Last but not least, I always look at the cover fabric.
Easy to clean should be essential. It’s better for a car seat to be made of machine washable fabric. Even with 6 and 7-year-olds, you will have accidents. And as a parent, you must clean up for them.
Being comfortable is a bonus and sometimes is the most important. Your little boy or girl can easily get sweaty in a car seat, especially in hot areas or weather. Car seats with fabric to keep the cooldown should be your preferred choice then, like Chicco NextFit Zip Air and MAX. They are commonly premium versions with a pricey tag.
FAQs on Best Car Seat for 7 Year Old
Yes. A 7 year old should ride in the car seat, either a convertible or a booster, depending on the child’s weight and height. If they don’t grow over the harness height or weight limits, stick with the convertible for better protection anyway.
However, you need to switch to the booster mode or move them to a booster car seat when they’re approaching the convertible car seat’s size restrictions – weight or height limits whichever comes first.
No. 7-year-old children should travel by car seat. That is the law in most countries and US states. Even older children of 12-13 years old are required to sit in a car seat in some US states or cities.
Not necessary. Some states requires 8 year old kids to stay in a car seat because they’re not big enough to use the vehicle seat belt. The child restraint system safety laws in a few countries require a kid younger than 12 or 13 years to sit in a car seat – usually a backless booster, for travel.
No. A 7 year old child is not required in a 5 point harness. They’re big enough to fit a booster – high back or backless, which is suitable for kids at least 4 years old or weighing over 40 pounds.
But if your 7-year-old is still able to use a 5 point harness within the harness weight or height limits – generally 65 pounds and 49 inches, please stick with the harness for protection anyway.
Both convertible and booster are good for 7 year olds. If they’re within the harness height or weight limits of 65 pounds and 49 inches (in most cases), they should stick with a harness convertible.
However, if they grow over the top height or height limits, meaning they’re ready to move to a booster, you should change the all-in-one car seat to booster mode or purchase a new booster car seat.
A 7 year old is supposed to fit well in a backless booster, so it’s okay to get this cheaper model for them.
Yes. 7 year old children should travel with a car seat, convertible, or booster, depending on your child’s weight and height. 5-point harness convertible car seats generally come with a 65-lb weight limit and 49-inch height limit, make sure your child doesn’t exceed either limitation.
A 7 year old child approaching these size restrictions needs to move to a booster, both the highback and backless models are okay, but the former is considered safer.
Yes. Backless booster seat is designed for kids at least 4 year old or weighing over 40 pounds. Most 7 year old children can meet the lowest requirements of a backless booster.
Theoretically, a child aged 4 year old can stop using a 5 point harness, as most booster car seats are suitable for 4 year olds. However, it’s strongly recommended to accommodate your child in a 5 point harness convertible as long as possible until they outgrow the height or weight limits – commonly 65 pounds and 49 inches.
a 5-point harness offers better protection than a booster because the harness can help keep your child from moving too much in crashes.
A child has to weigh at least 40 pounds to be in a booster seat. This typically happens when a child is 3 or 4 year old. So most booster seats also indicate that they’re suitable for 4 year old children. Whatever requirement comes first.
But it’s highly advised to keep a 4 year old or 40-pound child in a convertible car seat with a 5-point harness for safety.