Graco Grows4Me Review – Affordable 4-in-1 Car Seat

Graco Grows4Me 4-in-1 Car Seat

Graco Grows4Me

Overall Rating
Face Rear & Front

At a price under $300, the Graco Grows4Me is among the affordable 4-in-1 car seats – particularly if you’re looking for a sturdy, sustainable solution to grow with your child from birth to preteen. With a capacity of 120 pounds and 57 inches, the Grows4Me is suitable for 7 year olds or older. What’s more appealing is that there is a no-back mode available, making it friendly for big kids. Whilst the Grows4Me more than earns the stamp of approval for quality that we’ve come to expect from Graco, there are other all-in-one car seats that offer the same performance for a cheaper price (i.e. the Evenflo EveryFit).

Graco Grows4Me Review - Affordable 4 in 1 Car Seat

Pros & Cons

The good and the bad

What is it best for

Who we recommend it for

Value for Money

Is it worth the price tag?


Dimensions, weight, color, etc

Safety Rating

Crash tests, FMVSS213, SIP


Weight/height limits, airplane, etc


Install with LATCH or seat belt


Other car seats to consider

1. Pros and Cons



2. Who Is It Best For?

Will the Graco Grows4Me Be a Good Fit For Your Child and Family?

The Graco Grows4Me boasts a whole bunch of features worth talking about. For example, the four modes should be the most appealing point of them. 

The Graco Grows4Me is a real 4-in-1 car seat. For this reason, I recommend it for families who want an affordable all-in-one car seat. Parents will benefit from the additional no-back model to save money – no need to purchase another backless booster seat, while kids will enjoy the protection and comfort in a safe place.

Its 10-position headrest and 6-position recline are friendly for growing kids because this will allow finding a perfect fit for kids of different ages and sizes

Of course, there’s no reason 7 year olds can’t get in on the act, too. The Graco Grows4Me’s capacity to support kids up to 120 pounds also makes it ideal for big kids as old as 8 to 10 – as long as they don’t exceed the 57-inch height limit – who will find lots to enjoy about its easy-to-use installation and array of highlights.

3. Value for Money

Is the price tag worth it?

Is the Graco Grows4Me good value for money? Yes… and no.

What I mean is that it depends on what you’re looking for in a car seat. If the price is high up your wish list, this isn’t the 4-in-1 car seat for you. Likewise, there is another 4 in 1 car seat out there that offers similar – if not superior – specs, but for a cheaper price (i.e. the Evenflo EveryFit).

Still, under $300, the Grows4Me is highly affordable – particularly considering that you’re also paying for the prestige of the brand. 

The Grows4Me’s 4 modes from rear-facing, forward-facing, to a high-back booster and backless booster, the multiple headrest and recline positions, and sturdy and reliable design are all hallmarks of the Graco brand – so if safety and comfort is a priority for you and your child, this car seat offers the value of money.

4. Design

Dimension and Width

Will Graco Grows4Me fit well in small cars?

Like other all-in-one car seats, the Graco Grows4Me is a bit bulky in its overall size. The dimensions of the Graco Grows4Me car seat are 22.7 x 20.5 x 26 inches (LxWxH). So before purchasing a Graco Grows4Me, make sure the inner dimensions of your car is spacious to install it.

This rule can be applied every time you need to purchase a car seat, even though you probably do not need to buy another one because Grows4Me lasts for good years.

The 20.5-inch width is not considered a slim fit when compared to those narrow car seats under 20 inches wide. The 26-inch height is very average and acceptable for a good fit in most vehicles. The point is the upper height limit when adjusting the headrest to the top position. For Grows4Me, it probably reaches a greater overall height of more than 30 inches. 

It is important to consider the width, length, and adjustable maximum height of a car seat when choosing one, especially if you have a smaller vehicle and limited space for the seat. If this is your case, or you have to install multiple car seats in the same row, check our post on best car seats to fit 3 across to find one.


Weighing in at just 22.5 lbs, the Grows4Me is as heavy as the 4Ever DLX (23 lbs) and slightly heavier than Extend2Fit (19 lbs). This is very similar to other all-in-one car seats

But if anything, that’s less a patch on the Grows4Me’s portability, and more a testament to Graco just being really good at making featherweight car seats. Because, at the end of the day, the Grows4Me is still lighter than Britax car seats and Chicco car seats in the same group.

However, this does not mean that Grows4Me has a high score on portability. It’s okay for a short mom (like my friend Jessie) to carry and install it effortlessly. But it’s still not recommended to move the Graco Grows4Me from one vehicle to another or take it through the airport. (it’s approved for airplane use.)

If you travel a lot via plane, check our post on the best lightweight convertible car seats or the most portable car seats to pick one that suits your needs.

Two Cup Holders

In the beginning, I didn’t notice that the Graco Grows4Me has only one cup holder, on the right side. It would be good to hold drinks or snacks, but it can’t do both. 

At this point, it’s not as good as its competitor – Graco 4Ever DLX. While two cup holders are friendly for both kids and parents – you can have your coffee or water bottle on the other cup holder when sitting beside your kids in the car seat, one cup holder or storage compartment is not enough. But one is better than none. (looking at you, Britax Marathon, Boulevard, and Advocate.)

There are a few Graco car seats that come equipped with only one cup holder. They are Graco Nautilus 65 LX 3-in-1 car seat, Graco Landmark 3 in 1 car seat, Graco Contender 65 convertible car seat, etc. If you don’t mind this much, it’s good to have any one of them because they should be narrower from the design than car seats with two cup holders.

The cup holder is removable and dishwasher-safe washable, ensuring that they are always hygienic and safe to use. It can be adjusted or removed, providing a convenient and accessible place for your child’s beverages.

Headrest and Harness

Adding to all that comfort is the Graco Grows4Me’s headrest/ harness – made of soft fabrics, multiple positions, and adjustable for growing children.

The Simply Safe Adjustable Harness System (SSAHS) is parent-friendly for ease of use. You can adjust the headrest and position at the same time using the adjustment level at the top. There are 10 positions available so that you can always find a perfect fit for kids at their current age and size.

To avoid the straps (even though they are soft as well) friction to your kid’s neck, the harness strap covers help a lot. They are removable. It’s recommended to remove them, decreasing the pressure on newborns. You may wonder, if I do this, the harness straps will cause red marks on the baby’s neck. You may pull up the baby’s collar to work as the strap cover.


Another thing that adds to the comfort and perfect fit is the reclines. Newborns can’t be placed upright. There should be space for them to lie flatly. 

The Graco Grows4Me’s no-frills, easily-reclining functionality is a breath of fresh air for newborns, toddlers, and big kids. It has six reclines, three for the rear-facing harness (in the blue area) and three for the forward-facing harness (in the orange area). 

Infant Body Support

Like the other Graco car seats, the Grows4Me comes equipped with infant body support.

That’s about standard for a car seat of this capacity. It’s a must-have additionality to allow small newborns to fit well in the car seat.

Some manufacturers call this an infant insert. They are the same. It’s removable and required to be removed as your kid grows bigger, typically around 8-11 pounds, depending on the specific requirements of different brands and different models.

Head support

The Graco Grows4Me has removable head support. According to child safety experts, newborns are not able to keep their necks steady and they are fragile. The head support works along with the body support to provide a stable grip for newborns in the car seat.

Taking into account the growth of a kid and the capability to hold their neck means no need to use the head support for a toddler. So it’s also removable.

5. Safety Rating and Crash Tests

Is Graco Grows4Me a safe car seat to use?

You don’t get to be one of the biggest names in the child car seat industry (heck, in the world) by making low-quality car seats. So it comes as nobody’s surprise that the Grows4Me is a sturdy, resilient addition that more than earns its place in the Graco convertible car seats lineup.

Made from a metal frame and energy-absorbing foam, the Grows4Me will give you wings for safety. It is basic to pass the federal mandatory crash test. Plus, the Grows4Me has side impact protection (SIP). The manufacturer does not mention how many layers of SIP it features, but it should be at least one layer. 

Theoretically, the more layers of SIP, the better. Most car seats come equipped with two layers on average. Britax Advocate has three layers and several Diono Radian car seats have six or eight layers of SIP. However, the correct installation is fundamental to making full use of these SIPs.

The Graco Grows4Me finally gets a safety rating of around 7 out of 10. That’s a score most car seats will get for the side impact protection and the capability to pass the FMVSS 213. It’s a pity that the Grows4Me does not feature the ProtectPlus, which can be found on other premium models like 4Ever DLX, SlimFit3 LX, and Extend2Fit. This is Graco’s exclusive technique designed to enhance the car seat’s protection performance.

6. Performance

Weight and Height Limits

What are the height and weight limits for Graco Grows4Me?

The car seat comes ready to accommodate a kid for the long run within its very own size limit.

As I’ve already alluded to, the Grows4Me is a good car seat for infants from birth. The minimum weight requirement of this 4-in-1 car seat is as low as 5 pounds. That means a newborn baby at least 5 pounds is okay to sit in this car seat. To help small newborns fit up in the car seat, the Grows4Me comes equipped with infant body support

The 40-lb rear-facing weight limit is the most commonly seen for convertible or all-in-one car seats. (There are comparably very few rear-facing cars seats 50 lbs on the market.) The 5-lb gap compared to infant car seats (40 lbs vs 35 lbs) seems very few, but it’s okay to make Grows4Me to be as good as the best car seats with extended rear-facing, especially when the Graco Grows4Me rear-facing height limit is up to 49 inches – that’s the same as the forward-facing.

The Graco Grows4Me height and weight limit for a 5-point harness are very standard – same as most car seats on the market: 65 lbs/49″. This size limit makes Grows4Me a good car seat for toddlers between 3 to 5 years old. See the best car seats for 3 years old, 4 years old, and 5 years old.

After switching to booster mode, the Graco Grows4Me height and weight limit are slightly different from the other all-in-one car seats. It supports high-back booster mode and backless booster mode. High-back mode’s weight and height limit are quite average – 100 lbs/57″. The top weight limit in backless mode is higher – up to 120 pounds, making Graco Grows4Me a good car seat for tall and heavy kids.

Stage / Modes

What are the stages of the Graco Grows4Me?

You can simply get this from its name. The Grows4Me is a 4-in-1 car seat, meaning it should go through at least three stages: rear-facing, forward-facing, and booster.

These stages are defined by NHTSA and they are the most used car seat stages on the market. The last seat-belt stage does not require a kid to use a car seat.

If we explore the Grows4Me stages in more detailedly, the first two stages should be the rear-facing harness and forward-facing harness because there is a 5-point harness for these two stages. Child safety experts recommend keeping a kid in the 5-point harness for as long as possible, at least 4 years of age, and better till 6 years or older.

Just next to the forward-facing harness is the booster stage. At this stage, the car seat has a minimum weight and age requirement – 40 lbs or heavier, or 4 years or bigger.

Then how does the 4-in-1 come? The answer lies in the booster stage. The Graco Grows4Me can be used in two modes – highback and backless. That means you can remove the back support and turn it into a backless booster seat. That’s the same as the Graco 4Ever DLX 4-in-1 car seat.

Check our comparison on Graco Grows4Me vs 4Ever DLX in the below part.

Age Range/Longevity

The age range is dependent on the stages and the weight and height limits for each stage.

Let’s explain the stage/age/size for Grows4Me.

Rear-facing harness: 5-40 lbs /49″. So it’s a good choice for newborns and a good car seat for toddlers to stay rear-facing until 2 years old. This makes Grows4Me a good choice in a few states, like New York, Virginia, Washington, etc, where the official mandatorily asks parents to use a rear-facing car seat for 2 years old.

Forward-facing harness: 65 lbs/49″. This average size makes Grows4Me as good as the car seats for 3 years old, 4 years old, 5 years old.

Booster: 120 lbs/57″. The car seat is good for big kids around 7-8 years old, probably till 10 years of age. However, the child car seat laws in most US states only require a child 8 years or younger to use a child restraint system before they reach 57″ tall. See also the best car seats for 7 years or older.


Is a Graco Grows4Me 4-in-1 car seat allowed on planes?

There’s no sugarcoating it – the Grows4Me’s 5-point harness means it can be used on a plane.

You can simply find the statement that this car seat is approved by the FAA for airplane use. This information can be also found on a sticker on the car seat side. 

However, there is one condition if you want to use Graco Grows4Me for air travel – it should be used in the five-point harness mode. That means this car seat can be used for 5-year-olds on the plane. 

But you probably do not want to take a 19-lb beast across the airports. If you do want a car seat for travel, find one car seat that is portable, or check our post on lightweight convertible car seats.


How long is Graco Grows4Me 4-in-1 car seat good for

Another thing that works with the Grows4Me’s top 120 lbs/ 57″ size limit and three stages is that it can last good years.

The lifespan is the longest – up to 10 years (since the date of manufacture), even though the actual usable time should be shorter than this. It needs several months from the manufacture to the day when it’s on the market.

When does Graco Grows4Me expire?

All car seats have an expiration date, and so does the Graco Grows4Me. For Graco car seats, the expiration date is not directly imprinted on the car seat label and you need to do a simple calculation:

Expiration date = the date of manufacture + lifespan

So the real expiration date varies depending on the date of manufacture. 

Check our post on when Graco car seats expire.


The warranty for Graco Grows4Me is average, only coming with the 12-month standard warranty starting from the date of original purchase. 

It’s commonly the first step if you’re planning to use the car seat for a long time, without a return.

7. Graco Grows4Me Installation

How to Install Graco Grows4Me

To install the Graco Grows4Me car seat, follow these general steps:

  • Read the instruction manual: Before installing the car seat, make sure you read the instruction manual thoroughly. The manual will provide specific instructions for your Graco Grows4Me model.
  • Position the car seat: Decide where in your vehicle you want to place the car seat. Make sure it’s a position that meets the manufacturer’s safety guidelines and that you have enough space for the car seat to fit securely.
  • Install the base: If your Graco Grows4Me model comes with a base, you will need to install it first. Follow the instructions in the manual to securely attach the base to your vehicle’s seat using the LATCH system or seat belt.
  • Adjust the harness: Once the base is securely installed, adjust the car seat’s harness to fit your child. The harness should be snug and secure, with the chest clip positioned at armpit level.
  • Install the car seat: Place the car seat onto the base or directly onto the vehicle seat if it’s a convertible car seat. Follow the instructions in the manual to securely attach the car seat to the base or vehicle using the LATCH system or seat belt.
  • Check for proper installation: After installation, check to make sure the car seat is securely installed and doesn’t move more than an inch in any direction. Also, make sure the harness is snug and secure, and the chest clip is positioned at armpit level.

It’s important to note that the proper installation of a car seat is critical for your child’s safety. If you’re not sure how to install the car seat, it’s always best to consult a certified child passenger safety technician for assistance.

If you want to know detailed steps in Graco Grows4Me manual, move on reading.

Graco Grows4Me rear facing installation

Install Rear-Facing with LATCH
Install Rear-Facing with Vehicle Seat Belt

Graco Grows4me Forward Facing Installation

Install Forward-Facing with LATCH
Install Forward-Facing with Vehicle Seat Belt

How to Install Graco Grow4Me in Booster Mode?

Install Highback Booster

Install Backless Booster

Graco Grows4Me Car Seat Manual

The user manual is the most important thing you need to make sure it’s included in the package. You should always read the user manual before starting to install and use it for riding your child. 

The Graco Grows4Me manual is stored in a small storage bag on the back, but you can always find the online user manual on its official website, or download the PDF here.

8. Specification and Comparison

Brand Graco
Suitable for Newborns, toddlers, and preschoolers
Positions Rear-facing and forward-facing
Portability (1-10) 7. Bulky and heavy duty
Weight (lb.) 22.5
Weight limits (lb.) 5-40 for rear-facing, and 22-65 for forward-facing, 40-120 for booster
Height limit (inch) 49” for rear-facing and for forward-facing, 57″ for booster
Dimension 20″ x 21.5″ x 24″ DWH
Cup holder One
Age Range 0-10 years old
Stage 1st, 2nd, 3rd
Longevity 0-10 years old
Installation LATCH and seat belt
Headrest Positions 10
Recline Positions 6
Airplane Yes
Lifespan 10 Years
Extra Features 4 modes, turn to a backless booster, save money

Graco Grows4Me vs 4Ever DLX

Car Seats Comparison Grows4Me 4Ever DLX
Price $279.99 $329.99
Weight limits (lb) RF:5-40 / FF: 22-65 / Booster:40-120 RF:4-40 / FF: 22-65 / Booster:40-120
Headrest Adjustable Positions 10 10
Reclines 6 6
Steel Reinforced
Cup Holder One Two
Easy-to-Remove Seat Pad -
Belt Lock-Off -

9. Alternatives

What other 4-in-1 car seats should you consider?

Graco 4Ever DLX 4-in-1 Car Seat

Graco 4Ever DLX

Why is it better than the Graco Grows4Me?
Why is it worse than the Graco Grows4Me?
Evenflo EveryFit 4-in-1 Car Seat for Girls

Evenflo EveryFit

Why is it better than the Graco Grows4Me?
Why is it worse than the Graco Grows4Me?