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The Evenflo Gold REVOLVE360 proved to be comfortable, durable, and convenient
If you’ve ever tried to get a sleeping baby into a car seat without waking them up, or if you’ve ever had to wrestle a reluctant toddler into their shoulder straps while balancing a heavy bag of groceries on your shoulder, you know how cumbersome a car seat can be. Strapping your child in safely and comfortably means crouching down, contorting your back, and oftentimes smacking the back of your head against the car. Thankfully, that’s not the case with rotating convertible car seats. These handy products give you easier access to your child by spinning either 180 or 360 degrees on their base so the baby faces you in either direction. That means you can easily adjust your child’s straps, pick them up, or wipe a runny nose without having to reach completely into the car.
Rotating convertible car seats differ from traditional car seats in that they sit as a more permanent fixture, so you can’t tote them around or click them into a stroller. Most are transitional enough to support your child from infancy to toddlerhood, and some even have three modes of use: rear-facing, forward-facing, and booster-style.
In search of the best rotating convertible car seats, we put seven models to the test to evaluate ease of installation, ease of use, durability, safety, and overall value. We combined first-person knowledge with real-world tests and expert guidance from the American Academy of Pediatrics to determine the best rotating convertible car seats for a variety of different needs. Read on for our findings.
Best Overall: Evenflo Gold Revolve360 Rotational All-In-One Convertible Car Seat
Installation is clear and easy.
Features three modes: rear-facing, forward-facing, and booster
This car seat's removable padding adds extra comfort.
360 degree rotation makes it easy to access your baby from any angle
It doesn’t have a sun shade like some other infant car seats we tested.
Tired of reaching half your body into the car every time you need to check on your child? This genius car seat is enough to make you say goodbye to standard car seats forever. It rotates 360 degrees to allow you easier access to your baby, which means it’s suitable for rear-facing infants or forward-facing toddlers alike. In fact, this car seat boasts three modes of use: rear-facing, forward-facing, and booster. Throughout the testing process we were thrilled to see how easy this car seat makes the process of loading and unloading your baby. In fact, after using it for just a few months our testers can’t imagine going back to standard car seats. To rotate, simply pull on the lever on the side then turn it in whichever direction you prefer. It offers unbeatable convenience for busy parents who need a little extra help getting in and out of the car.
Overall, we found this car seat incredibly easy to install. The manufacturer provides accompanying videos that helped us install it in less than four minutes from start to finish. The seat can be placed in the left, right, or center seat of your vehicle, which adds to its versatility and is especially helpful if you have multiple children or multiple car seats in your vehicle. We love that it audibly clicks into place, so you know that you’re securely locked in before proceeding. We love that the seat reclines comfortably for younger children, and the material is soft, durable, and breathable.
Best of all, we love how intuitive this car seat is to use. Simply place your baby in, buckle the buckles, adjust the straps, then pull the levers to swivel and lock it into place. Removable padding means it’s extra comfortable on all sides, too. This is a fantastic option for anyone looking for a comfortable, easy-to-use stroller that can grow with your child as they age.
Price at time of publish: $349.98
Maximum Weight Forward Facing: 65 pounds | Maximum Weight Rear Facing: 40 pounds | Width: 19.5 inches | Cup holders: Yes | Cleaning Instructions: Wipe clean with soap and water | Car Seat Weight: 29.6 pounds
Best Rear-Facing: Graco Turn2Me 3-in-1 Rotating Convertible Car Seat
Installation is clear and easy
Safe recline positions are clearly indicated on the side
Straps are easy to adjust, so you can quickly secure your baby
This doesn’t offer 360 degree rotation, so you’ll need to reinstall it if switching from rear-facing to forward-facing
This spacious car seat is easy to install and intuitive to use. We love how simple the rotation system is to use — simply pinch and click a lever on the side to turn the seat either left or right. The super-padded seat can rotate 180 degrees, which means you can easily access your child from either side without needing to take them out of the seat altogether. We found the buckles to be extremely simple and intuitive to understand, and we were able to adjust the straps as necessary without any trouble. We love that this car seat makes it extra comfortable and safe for smaller babies who need to be rear-facing; the seat has clear recline instructions written on the side that indicate the safest recline position for your child. The straps are easy to use, and we love that they tighten and loosen in sync with one another, so one strap isn’t tighter or looser than the other. The material is soft and breathable too, so it can easily be wiped clean of any spills or leaks.
Keep in mind that this is not a 360-degree rotating car seat. That means if you want to switch your child from rear-facing to forward-facing, you will need to completely uninstall and reinstall it before placing your child in.
Price at time of publish: $314.97 (orig. $449.99)
Maximum Weight Forward Facing: 65 pounds | Maximum Weight Rear Facing: 40 pounds | Width: 19.13 inches | Cup holders: Yes | Cleaning Instructions: Wipe clean with soap and water | Car Seat Weight: 30 pounds
Best for SUVs: Baby Jogger City Turn Rotating Convertible Car Seat
5 recline positions and 10 headrest positions ensure comfort for your child
Audible locking system lets you know it’s securely in place
Removable padding and infant insert add extra comfort
This doesn’t offer 360 degree rotation, you’ll need to reinstall it if switching from rear-facing to forward-facing
Once in forward-facing mode, this car seat does not rotate
Installation is a little complicated
This car seat is large, sturdy, and adjustable, which means it’s a great option for larger cars that have more space to work with. We love that this seat features 10 different headrest positions that easily adjust to provide extra comfort to growing children. It also features five different recline positions, so even younger babies can be comfortable at different stages of growth. In fact, this car seat even comes with a removable infant insert to make sure little ones are safely supported with extra padding. It’s comfortable and plush, and our testers had no problem cleaning the soft, moisture-wicking fabric — even after unexpected spit-ups. We love that the straps and rotating mechanism are easy to use. Simply pull the rotating lever to whichever side you prefer — left or right—then buckle in your child and adjust the straps. The rotating feature is incredibly convenient and easy to use.
While we love that this car seat can be used rear-facing or forward-facing, we were disappointed to see that it does not rotate while in the forward-facing position. Once installed in the forward position, it simply operates as a standard car seat. Additionally, we found the installation a little complicated, so be sure to read the manual fully and watch the corresponding videos.
Price at time of publish: $439.99 (orig. $550)
Maximum Weight Forward Facing: 65 pounds | Maximum Weight Rear Facing: 50 pounds | Width: 19.25 inches | Cup holders: Yes | Cleaning Instructions: Wipe clean with soap and water | Car Seat Weight: 28 pounds
Easiest to Use: Nuna REVV Rotating Convertible Car Seat
Compact size means it’s not bulky
Two sets of infant inserts means it’s safe for babies as little as 5 pounds
Luxurious padding and soft fabric make it extra comfortable
This is the most expensive seat on our list
It can only accommodate kids up to 40 pounds and 43 inches
It doesn’t have cup holders
If you’re familiar with Nuna products, you know the brand makes some of the most luxurious baby gear available. This car seat is no different — ample padding and super-soft fabric make it extra comfortable for your baby, and two sets of removable infant inserts mean it’s safe for babies as little as five pounds. We love that the car seat rotates 360 degrees, so even the wiggliest babies are no match for this seat's convenience. You can tell just by looking at it how sturdy and well-made it is, and the harness straps are easy and intuitive to buckle and unbuckle. The hip straps are padded to provide extra comfort and prevent straps from digging into your little one’s legs. Best of all, the car seat makes an audible clicking sound when it’s in position, so you know you’re always using it safely. It has various recline options and even has a color-coded key on the side to let you know how far to recline your baby.
However, you’ll need to keep height and weight limitations at the top of mind before purchasing this. It’s only suitable for children up to 40 pounds and 43 inches tall, so you won’t be able to get as much use out of it as you would with other car seats. Due to the higher price, height and weight limitations are important to factor in when considering overall value.
Price at time of publish: $650
Maximum Weight Forward Facing: 40 pounds | Maximum Weight Rear Facing: 40 pounds | Width: 18.5 inches | Cup holders: No | Cleaning Instructions: Wipe clean with soap and water | Car Seat Weight: 30 pounds
Most Comfortable: Maxi-Cosi Emme 360 Rotating All-in-One Convertible Car Seat
Features three modes: rear-facing, forward-facing, and booster
Its soft fabric and plush padding make it extra comfortable.
Adjustable headrest and multiple recline positions make it even more comfortable.
This seat is large and bulky, so it’s not great if you have other car seats in your car at the same time.
Installation is challenging.
This spacious rotating convertible car seat is super comfortable thanks to the multiple recline positions and an adjustable headrest. It also offers ample removable padding, so you can leave the padding on the seat for smaller children and remove parts of it as your child grows if the seat begins to feel too tight. Two cup holders add extra convenience to the luxurious seat, and the magnetic straps are simple and intuitive to adjust.
Throughout the testing process we were super impressed to see how soft, breathable, and light the fabric is; it feels well-made and durable. We love how easy the rotating mechanism is—though it did take two hands for some of our editors—you can simply grasp the pincher in the front of the seat and rotate the seat to whichever side you prefer. It offers a 360 degree rotation so you can easily transition this seat from rear-facing to forward-facing and there’s no need to uninstall it and reinstall it.
Keep in mind that while this is a super spacious and luxurious seat, it’s definitely not compact — we found it to be on the bulkier side, especially when placed in smaller cars or sedans. Setup is challenging, too, so be sure to read the manual fully and watch the accompanying videos to ensure you set it up correctly.
Price at time of publish: $650
Maximum Weight Forward Facing: 65 pounds | Maximum Weight Rear Facing: 40 pounds | Width: 18.5 inches | Cup holders: No | Cleaning Instructions: Wipe clean with soap and water | Car Seat Weight: 30 pounds
Other Rotating Convertible Car Seats We Tried
CYBEX Gold Car Seat SIRONA S 360° Swivel Seat: We found this car seat to be so large and bulky that it impacted our ability to install it anywhere other than behind the passenger seat. The button clasp is difficult to latch and unlatch, and it requires a significant amount of hand strength. Lastly, the rotating mechanism is a two-step process that requires two hands, so it’s not as easy to operate as most of the other seats on our list.
Safety 1st Turn and Go 360 DLX Rotating All-in-One Convertible Car Seat: We found that the rotating mechanism on this seat was difficult to use. Though the product is advertised as having a one-handed rotation function, it required so much force that we needed two hands to operate it. Additionally, our tester’s child’s feet would often get stuck during the rotating process, which eliminates the convenience of having a rotating convertible car seat.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Rotating Convertible Car Seat
Weight and Height Limits
As is the case with most baby products, car seats have important weight and height limitations that parents must consider before purchasing. Weight and height restrictions are the best indicator of how much use you’ll get out of your car seat. If your child is nearing the maximum weight, chances are you’ll need to purchase another car seat rather quickly.
For optimal safety, make sure your child is within the recommended height and weight limitations for any car seat you use in a vehicle. You’ll also need to keep in mind that your car seat might have different height and weight recommendations for each configuration, so the total weight will likely be different when rear-facing than it is when forward-facing. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that young children stay rear-facing for as long as possible, so be sure to note the rear-facing height and weight limits before purchasing.
Having adjustable straps is essential in making sure that your child remains comfortable in their seat, but more importantly, straps should be easy and intuitive to adjust so that you can do it without having to uninstall the car seat completely. We love the Graco Turn2Me Car Seat for its easily adjustable straps. Kids grow quickly, and it’s best to have a car seat that can grow with them in a safe, structured manner.
When it comes to car seats, there are many parts of the mechanism that are adjustable. Depending on the option you choose, the headrest, straps, and recline positions are all potentially adjustable. A car seat with a steeper recline is best for a child who can’t yet hold up their head, and a more inclined seat is more suited to a toddler or older infant. Rotating car seats that convert from rear-facing to forward-facing and into a booster seat will also ensure that you get many years of use out of the car seat you select.
The sole purpose of purchasing a rotating car seat is so that it can swivel around to give you more access to your child. That means the rotating mechanism of any convertible car seat should be tailored to your needs. While most swivel left to right, they don’t all swivel from rear-facing to forward-facing. Before selecting one, consider what type of car you have and what type of limitations you’re currently dealing with. If you only need a car seat that swivels 180 degrees so you can access your child from either direction, select that option. But if you’re looking for a car seat that can start rear-facing then transition to forward-facing without being reinstalled, you’ll want to select a car seat that has a 360 degree swivel capacity. Keep in mind that some are easier to rotate than others — for optimal convenience, select a car seat that offers one-handed rotating ability.
How We Tested
We tested rotating convertible car seats and graded them on the following attributes:
Setup and Installation: We took each product out of the box and installed it according to the manufacturer’s instructions. We timed ourselves installing the product and took note of any challenges or pain points that the process presented.
Performance: Next, we wiggled the car seat side to side and front to back to ensure that it did not move more than one inch in any direction. We operated the rotating mechanism per the manufacturer’s instructions to determine how easy or cumbersome it felt, while paying specific attention to whether or not it could be done one-handed.
Daily Use: Next, our testers used the car seat throughout their daily routines to evaluate how functional, convenient, and durable each product was. Each car seat was tested by a different editor and their child over the course of months, and we took special care to evaluate each seat’s overall comfort and safety. We adjusted and tightened the straps and harness, and operated the rotating mechanism regularly to evaluate how the seat felt over time.
Ease of Cleaning: Lastly, we cleaned each product according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Frequently Asked Questions
What age is the 360 spin car seat for?
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children should remain in the rear-facing position for as long as possible or until they reach the maximum weight recommended for that seat. Once a child is ready to transition to a forward-facing car seat, a 360-degree spin can be beneficial in that the car seat can be repositioned without needing to be uninstalled and reinstalled. Car seats that only offer 180-degree rotational mechanisms can only turn left to right; they can’t swivel completely around to the front.
What are the disadvantages of a rotating convertible car seat?
Rotating convertible car seats have a lower rear-facing weight limitation than other types of car seats, which means your child will most likely outgrow it faster than a regular car seat. Additionally, many rotating convertible car seats are large and bulky, so they might require more space than a standard car seat.
Are rotating convertible car seats safe?
As with any baby product, it is extremely important to follow assembly and installation directions closely. As long as your car seat is installed correctly and you use it in accordance with AAP guidelines, a rotating convertible car seat should be a safe option for children who are within the height and weight limitations recommended for that specific car seat.
Why Trust People?
Laura Denby is a full-time product reviews writer specializing in testing and reviewing home, kitchen, and parenting products. She is the mother of an active two-year-old and has experience using both infant car seats and rotating convertible car seats. Laura’s work can be found in Food & Wine, FoodNetwork.com, Forbes Vetted, and Better Homes & Gardens. For this roundup, Laura consulted our in-depth lab and real-world testing insights from fellow parents and consulted regulations and guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics.
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