When Do Graco Car Seats Expire – 7 to 10 Years after the Date of Manufacture

When do Graco car seats expire? If you have got a Graco car seat and want to know when your Graco car seat will expire, here is the ultimate guide. 

Some manufacturers may have the expiration date directly displayed on the white sticker (you can find it at the side or back of the car seat, back for Graco) along with the model name and manufacturer date. Some may not, like the Graco.

So you need to do a bit of calculation to get a result of the Graco car seats expiry dates. Don’t you worry about it, I’ll show you how to calculate the expiry dates for Graco car seat later in this post. 

Before that, I want you to know the exact meaning of the car seat expiration date and why car seats expire. Of course, you may also want to know how to deal with your Graco expired car seats after six or ten years of useful time.

Infant

Graco Infant Car Seats Expiry Date

Convertible

Graco Convertible Car Seats Expiry Date

Booster

Graco Booster Seats Expirty Date

What Do Car Seat Expiry Dates Mean?

If you have no idea that car seats can expire after several years of use – typically less than ten years, now it’s a good time to update your knowledge about the Graco car seats expiration date

As a daily use essential, the car seats – just like the vehicles, have a given expiry date (generally by the manufacturer) that tells you how long the seat can reasonably be used will still be considered safe.

While there are incidents that may shorten the life of a Graco car seat, the expiry date is there to ensure that your car seat is being used to provide optimal protection for your little one for the longest time.

If nothing happens, such as an accident, car seats won’t suddenly go bad on the exact date of expiry. 

However, that date is for your reference to know how long you can reasonably expect the Graco car seat to last. Many factors that result in a car seat expiration can’t be personally controlled, so you can’t estimate your Graco car seat to last longer than the due date. 

It’s never a good idea to continue using a Graco car seat past the expiry date regardless of how well condition it was maintained. You can extend the real usage period before your Graco car seat expires by taking proper care of it.

How Long Are Graco Car Seats Good For?

Typically, most Graco car seats are good for between seven and ten years after the date of manufacture, depending on the car seat type and frame materials. It's important to check this manufacture date when you're buying a Graco car seat. This is the only way to make sure how long it can serve you (if without accidents and in well-maintained condition).

CarSeatOn

Why Do Car Seats Expire?

If you are thinking that manufacturers give their car seats an expiry date in order to increase sales, you’re totally wrong. Your Graco car seats expire due to various reasons:

Improved techniques

Just take the phone as an example. You cannot compare a phone manufactured ten years ago with the one you just get in 2022 because of the features added.

For the same reason, Graco car seats produced years ago cannot deliver the same features as the new ones. Regardless of how well-maintained it is, an old car seat will lack some safety features vital to saving your little one’s life.

Crash tests are always required to ensure that new technology is installed with each recent production to improve the chances of survival in case of any collisions.

Graco is known for its premium safety technology; thus, it employs ProtectPlus Protection in its car seats (new models like Graco 4Ever DLX 4-in-1, some old car seats do not have this feature but are still safe to ride a child). The infant car seats have an energy-absorbing base, side impact protection, an and impact-stabilizing frame.

Older car seats may lack some of these advanced technological features; hence, it’s crucial to replace them before or as soon as they expire.

Recalls

Upon getting your Graco car seat, it is important to register it with the manufacturer to keep you updated with any news regarding the product.

It’s good if nothing happens to the car seat you’re currently using. But once a faulty (generally a crucial one) is found, the manufacturer would recall the car seat and discontinue production for that model. 

You can check the recall list of child seats to find out if your Graco car seat is included in it or not. If yes, it’s best to return that car seat, or you should check this list before purchasing a car seat.

Discontinuation

Changing standards may also result in the discontinuation of previous models that are unfit to use. If that happens, getting a newer model is a good idea, instead getting replacement parts that can be a challenge.

Wear and tear

Even if your Graco car seats have an expiry date, they usually remain in the vehicle for a long period. Due to the long-term exposure to changing weather conditions,  the heat, cold, and humidity will eventually take an effect on the seat’s frame and padding, reducing its quality for safe riding.

Plastic is especially affected by extreme heat or cold. The expansion and contraction will negatively affect the car seat. Therefore if the plastic looks faded, yet it was originally gray or black and has dents or cracks, it is time to get a new car seat.

Rust in the metal frames also reduces your car seat’s safety performance during a collision. Crash tests conducted in Sweden prove that a rusty chassis and the body of the car seat increase the likelihood of death by 20%. Taking proper care of your Graco car seats before their expiry date increases your little one’s chance of surviving.

However, no matter how much you try to maintain it, you cannot prevent it from displaying signs of the years it has served your kiddie. When you find it’s a challenge to replace the parts after regular wear and tear, it’s time to get a newer model.

When Do Graco Car Seats Expire -Infant

According to Graco company, their infant car seats commonly last for seven years. So if you have purchased a Graco infant car seat, it’ll expire seven years from the date of manufacture.

You can find the manufacture date on a white label on the back of the car seat. With no luck, you’ll find that there is no expiration date shown on the label, not even the useful time (we call lifespan in the product reviews). 

You’ll need to read the car seat’s useful time in the user manual included in every car seat package. The paper user manual is generally stored in the compartment where an instruction book icon is shown. The compartment is located in the base for infant car seats.

With the manufacture date and the useful time, we can easily know when your Graco infant car seats expire with a simple calculation.

To make it simple for you to know the time when do Graco car seats expire, we list the useful time (=expiry date in the table) of all Graco infant car seats for your reference.

13 Graco Infant Car Seats Expiry Date

Model Expiry Date Location of Expiry Date Online User Manual
SnugRide® SnugLock™ 35 XT Infant Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SnugRide® SnugLock® 35 LX Infant Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SnugRide® SnugLock™ 35 Elite Infant Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SnugRide® SnugLock™ 35 Infant Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SnugRide® SnugLock™ 30 Infant Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SnugRide® SnugLock® 35 LX featuring 1-Hand Adjustt 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SnugRide® SnugLock® 35 LX featuring TrueShield Technology 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SnugRide® SnugFit™ 35 DLX ft. Safety Surround Technology 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SnugRide® 35 Lite Infant Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SnugRide® SnugFit 35 Infant Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SnugRide® 35 Lite LX Infant Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SnugRide® SnugFit 35 DLX Infant Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SnugRide® SnugFit 35 Elite Infant Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual

It’s understandable that Graco infant car seats have the shortest 7-year useful time, they are designed for newborns and infants. The best is for toddlers younger than 24 months old. That’s not a long riding time, especially since babies won’t drink or play in an infant car seat. 

When Do Graco Car Seats Expire - Convertible

Graco convertible (including all-in-one) car seats usually expire after 7 or 10 years of the manufacture date. That’s the longest among all car seat types, no matter which brand (Britax, Chicco, and Diono also give 10 years as the maximum). 

It’s very understandable that convertibles should have a long useful time. They can be used rear-facing and forward-facing. A long lifespan is a must to ensure your kid’s safety. So frames of the convertible car seats are generally made of reinforced steel.

Same as the Graco infant car seats, the expiry date of Graco convertible car seats is not imprinted on the white label, where you can find the date of manufacture.

You’ll need to find the car seat’s useful time in the user manual and do a simple calculation to get an estimated expiry date. It commonly reads,

“STOP using this car seat and throw it away 10 years after the date of manufacture.”

Where to find the user manual for Graco convertible car seats? It’s stored on the back near the bottom with a reminder “Store Instruction Manual Here” – near the white sticker for manufacture date and model name. Or you can visit the online user manual we listed below.

Graco 4Ever DLX User Manual Storage

33 Graco Convertible and All-in-one Car Seats Expiry Date

Model Expiry Date Location of Expiry Date Online User Manual
Extend2Fit® Convertible Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Extend2Fit® 3-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Grows4Me™ 4-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SlimFit™ All-in-One Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Sequel™ 65 Convertible Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
TriRide™ 3-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
4Ever® DLX SnugLock® Grow™ 4-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Contender™ Slim Convertible Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Extend2Fit® 3-in-1 Car Seat featuring ARB 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
4Ever® DLX 4-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
TrioGrow™ SnugLock® 3-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Contender™ 65 Convertible Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Milestone™ 3-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Size4Me™ 65 Rapid Remove Convertible Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Extend2Fit® 3-in-1 Car Seat featuring TrueShield 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Admiral™ 65 Convertible Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
4Ever® DLX SnugLock® 4-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
4Ever® DLX SnugLock® 4-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
SlimFit3™ LX 3-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Graco® Premier 4Ever® DLX Extend2Fit® 4-in-1 Car Seat featuring ARB 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
4Ever® Extend2Fit® 4-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
4Ever 4-in-1 Convertible Car Seat featuring TrueShield 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
4Ever® 4-in-1 Convertible Car Seat featuring Safety Surround™ SIP 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
True3Fit™ LX 3-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Milestone® 3-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Landmark® 3-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
TrioGrow™ SnugLock® LX 3-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Sequence™ 65 Platinum Convertible Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Contender™ GO Convertible Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
4Ever 4-in-1 Convertible Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Extend2Fit® Platinum 3-in-1 Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
My Ride™ 65 Convertible Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Premier 4Ever® DLX Extend2Fit® SnugLock® 4-in-1 Car Seat featuring ARB 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual

When Do Graco Car Seats Expire -Booster

Graco booster seats usually expire after 7 or 10 years of the manufacture date, depending on the materials.

For boosters with steel-reinforced belt paths, the expiry date can be up to 10 years as the convertible, like the Graco Affix High Back Booster. If the car seat with plastic-reinforced belt path, the expiry date can be as short as a Graco infant car seat– only 7 years of useful time, like Graco Tranzitions and Atlas 65. 

The expiry date is not printed on the white sticker as the date of manufacture, you’ll have to find the car seat’s useful time, with which you can calculate the expiry date along with the manufacture date.

The car seat’s useful time can be found in the user manual, or you can view it online by clicking the button listed below.

19 Graco Booster Seats Expiry Date

Model Expiry Date Location of Expiry Date Online User Manual
RightGuide™ Portable Seat Belt Trainer™ 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Atlas™ 65 2-in-1 Harness Booster Car Seat 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
AFFIX™ Highback Booster Seat with Latch System 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Turbobooster® Grow™ Highback Booster featuring RightGuide™ Seat Belt Trainer™ 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
AFFIX™ Backless Booster with Latch System 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Nautilus® SnugLock® Grow™ 3-in-1 Harness Booster 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
TurboBooster® LX Backless Booster with LATCH 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Tranzitions™ 3-in-1 Harness Booster 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Nautilus® 65 3-in-1 Harness Booster Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
TurboBooster® Highback Booster 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Turbobooster® Backless Booster Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Nautilus® 65 LX 3-in-1 Harness Booster Car Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
TurboBooster® Stretch Booster Seat 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
TurboBooster® LX Highback Booster with Latch System 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Tranzitions® SnugLock® 3-in-1 Harness Booster 7 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Nautilus® SnugLock® LX 3-in-1 Harness Booster 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Nautilus™ 65 3-in-1 Harness Booster Car Seat with Safety Surround™ Protection 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
RightGuide™ Portable Seat Belt Trainer™ 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual
Nautilus® SnugLock® 3-in-1 Harness Booster 10 years after the date of manufacture. Label on back of car seat User Manual

How do I know If my Graco car seat is expired?

Graco company does not give the car seat expiry date directly

There is a white label on the back with some information regarding your car seat: The date of manufacture (DOM), car seat model number and name, and the origin, with no expiry date on this label. 

So you’ll need to do a simple calculation to get the expiry date:

Date of Manufacture + Car Seat’s Useful Time = Expiry Date 

For example, you got a Graco Extend2Fit convertible and found its manufacture date written:

2017 /10/18 (year/month/day)

We know that convertible car seats with a 10-year lifespan, then you’ll know the expiry date of your Graco Extend2Fit is:

2027/10/18

It should be safe to use this Extend2Fit car seat until October 2027. 

It’s really easy, isn’t it?

What to Do with Your Graco Car Seat When It Expires

Donate the Expired Seat

It’s not recommended to donate a car seat passing the expiry date to another parent or a charitable organization directly.

The child’s safety is not assured even if the expired car seat is in good condition without scratches, bumps, or deformation. 

When your car seat is approaching the expiry date, you can donate it to the Child Passenger Safety Technicians (CPSTs), who are car seat experts and receive training in harnessing procedures, car seats, and vehicle differences. They can use the expired car seats in training classes. 

So it’s a good idea to seek out some CPSTs to see if they can use your expired car seats before tossing your expired car seat into the trash,

Trade in the Expired Car Seat

A few stores participate in the trade-in events. You can trade the expired car seat in for a new one and get a discount. 

For example, Target stores launched the Trade-In event every year twice. You can bring your old car seat to the store to exchange for a discount for the new one. 

Target accepts all types of car seats, no matter infant car seats, convertible car seats, booster seats, and even car seat bases. You’ll only get a 20% discount for the new car seat you purchase. They won’t give you a totally free new car seat. 

That’s very understandable.

Walmart also has a car seat trade-in program, which ends in 2019. You’ll get a $30 gift card for the expired car seat, instead of a 20% discount like Target.

Recycle Your Expired or Used Car Seat

The third option is to recycle the old car seats when your car seat is expired or your children are past the age or size requirement of the car seat. 

Check around to see if there is a car seat recycling program near you and ask them if they accept the plastic from car seats. Some recycling companies will want you to tear down the car seat to remove any unrecyclable materials they can’t use before you bring them into them.

You can also try to find an online recycling company that will accept your expired car seat. But online recycling companies generally ask you to follow certain guidelines and pay for a shipping box.

Trash Your Expired Car Seat

If you can’t donate, trade in, or recycle the expired car seats, you should simply trash them.

However, before you toss the car seat in the trash, dismantle it first. This avoids the situation that someone will “reuse” it from the trash and put another child at risk.

It’s a good idea to mark on the car seat that it’s “expired” or “unsafe” after you dismantle the car seat

Buy A New Car Seat (Optional)

If the car seat is expired and your child is large enough and mature enough to wear the vehicle seat belt (this is the very ideal case), you don’t need to purchase another car seat.

However, if your child still needs a car seat – all kids under 8 years old are required to use a safety seat, it’s better to find an appropriate car seat for them.

Does Graco Car Seat Base Expire

Absolutely. Same as the car seats, the Graco car seat bases expire 7 or 10 years after the manufacturing date.

The way to know if your Graco car seat base is expired or not is exactly the same as the way to car seat – you should calculate it. 

Check your manual to find the ‘useful time’ and find the date of manufacture on the white label at the bottom of the base.

The Graco car seat bases are only designed for the infant seats, which will accommodate your baby until they reach 35 pounds in weight or 32 inches tall, whichever comes first.

You can register your Graco car seat to receive updates on expirations and potential recalls.

Is it legal to use an expired Graco car seat?

If your car seat has reached or exceeded its expiry date, it’s best  NOT to use it anymore, even if most of the car seat laws in the US don’t have a rule on the expired car seat.

Expired car seats are not safe and they might work as well as those car seats that are still within the expiry date. 

Using an expired car seat may result in a potential risk for your baby. It’s mostly the parents who decide to use an expired car seat or not. The police won’t stop you on the road to check if the car seat is expired or not.

If you find that your car seat is approaching its expiration date, you may follow the above advice to deal with it.

How to maximize a Graco Car Seat Use Time before Expiry Date

The useful time for a Graco car seat is defined by the manufacturer. It’s not changeable. But we can do something to extend the use time before it expires. 

You should always follow the instructions in the user manual:

  • To install the car seat properly. Improper installation not just results in a short life, but also compromises your baby’s safety. You can also visit a car seat inspection station or consult a certified child passenger safety technician to double-check if you have installed it properly.
  • To inspect the seat regularly. This is for checking for missing or loose parts.
  • To clean the seat regularly. Keeping the car seat clean will be good for not only extending the use time but also for your child’s comfort.
  • To stick to the size limit. Use the car seat within the limits for rear-facing, forward-facing, booster, or LATCH (commonly the harness limit).

Here are some pro tips for you:

  • Choose the right size for your child. It’s NOT recommended to use a seat that is too small or too large. It’s BEST to use an appropriate car seat to grow with your child according to your boy or girl’s size.
  • Purchase a seat that has not been in stores for long. Always buy car seats from an online or offline store that sells out the seat fast. It’s much easier to find the most popular car seats on Amazon, you can see the product’s reviews. Graco car seats are more popular than other brands.