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Which Infant Car Seat Is the Lightest?

Snuggle Bugz | | Comments 0

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When it comes to choosing the right infant car seat, there are many factors to consider. From safety features to installation ease, and even the design and style, parents have a lot to think about! 

One element that often gets overlooked is the weight of the car seat itself. Unlike convertible car seats that stay in the vehicle, infant car seats are designed to be carried around, and many can also be used as part of a travel system with compatible strollers. 

Most infant car seats range between 9 and 13 lbs. However, keep in mind, your baby will only get heavier, adding more weight to the load you'll be carrying. When considering this, you may want to think about the weight of the car seat to save your arms (and back) from unnecessary strain.

Who Should Consider a Lightweight Car Seat? 

We’re glad you asked! 

  • Parents who have to walk up and down stairs often: Lightweight infant car seats are particularly beneficial for parents who live in apartment buildings without elevators or frequently navigate multi-level homes. The reduced weight minimizes the physical strain and can be especially helpful after childbirth. A lighter car seat also helps maintain better balance and reduces the risk of accidents or falls on staircases. 
  • City dwellers who use public transportation: For parents who frequently travel on buses or subways, a lightweight car seat makes it much easier to navigate public transit systems. 
  • Travellers: For those who travel by air, a lightweight car seat is easier to carry through airports and can be more readily installed in rental cars or taxis. 
  • Parents with physical limitations: A lighter car seat requires less strength and can reduce strain on the back and arms, making it more manageable for individuals with physical challenges. 
  • People who live in compact spaces: In smaller homes with limited storage space, a lightweight car seat can be more easily moved and stowed away when not in use. 
  • Grandparents and caregivers: A lighter model can be easier for grandparents or occasional caregivers who might find heavier models too cumbersome.

What Makes These Seats Lighter? 

Just because these seats are lightweight doesn't make them any less safe. Manufacturers use premium lightweight materials, from the shell to foam and fabrics, to reduce the overall weight without compromising safety. They also remove unnecessary features that add extra weight and use fewer materials by tightening up the seat’s measurements. 

Of note, sometimes car seat weight specs don't include the canopy and infant inserts, so keep that in mind when doing your research.

Is Lower Weight Capacity an Issue? 

A lot of parents steer clear of lightweight car seats because of the lower weight limit (often around 22 lbs). However, this generally isn't an issue for most families as, on average, parents move their child to a convertible car seat (in rear-facing mode) between 10 and 14 months. The average weight for a 12-month-old baby boy is between 19 to 23.5 lbs, and a girl is 17.2 to 22.5 lbs. However, if your baby is larger, you may need to transition earlier. 

Nuna

PIPA Lite Infant Car Seat

$590.00

Nuna

PIPA Urbn Infant Car Seat

$620.00

The Lightest Infant Car Seats 

Here is a breakdown of some of our top infant car seats and their weight and carrying capacity.  

*Please note - these figures do not include the weight of the car seat’s base.
 

# Name Car Seat Weight Child Weight Limit More Resources
1. Nuna PIPA Lite 5.3 lbs. 22 lbs. Review
2. UPPAbaby Aria 5.9 lbs. 22 lbs.  Review
3. Nuna PIPA Urbn 7.27 lbs. 22 lbs. Review
4. Nuna PIPA 7.9 lbs. 35 lbs. Review
5. Maxi-Cosi Mico 30 8.2 lbs. 30 lbs.
6. Clek Liing 9 lbs. 35 lbs.  Review 
7. Britax Willow S 9.2 lbs. 30 lbs. Review 
8. Cybex Aton 2 SensorSafe 9.5 lbs. 35 lbs. Review
9. Peg Perego Primo Viaggio 4-35 9.5 lbs. 35 lbs.
10. UPPAbaby Mesa V2 9.9 lbs. 35 lbs. Review
11. Peg Perego Primo Viaggio 4-35 Nido 9.9 lbs. 35 lbs. 
12. UPPAbaby Mesa Max 9.9 lbs. 35 lbs. Review 
13. Baby Jogger City GO 10.65 lbs. 35 lbs.  Review 
14. Cybex Cloud G Lux SensorSafe 12 lbs. 35 lbs. Review 
15. Peg Perego Viaggio 4-35 Lounge Infant Seat 12 lbs. 35 lbs.  Review 
16. Maxi-Cosi Coral XP 12.6 lbs. 22 lbs.  *This seat has a removable inner carrier that weighs an additional 5 lbs. 

 

Lightweight Car Seat Summary 

The Nuna PIPA Lite is the lightest infant car seat on our list, weighing in at just 5.3 lbs. Its lightweight design is achieved through the use of Aeroflex foam, a material that is cleverly lightweight, resilient, and minimizes force transferred to the baby by absorbing and diffusing energy. The lightweight nature of the PIPA Lite makes it one of the lightest car seats in the world. 

The UPPAbaby Aria comes in second, weighing 5.9 lbs. It includes an Anti-Rebound + Panel for increased safety in rebound and rear-impact collisions and a simple, one-crotch buckle with an adjustable no-rethread harness for easily securing your child. Additionally, it features an ergonomic aluminum carry-handle designed for added stability and optimum portability, with a fifth anti-rebound handle position for increased safety in rebound and rear-impact collisions. 

The Nuna PIPA Urbn ranks third on our list at 7.27 pounds. It has the same weight capacity as the PIPA Lite (22 lbs), but also has a Sky drape and a peekaboo window on the canopy. One of the biggest differences between these two seats is that the Urbn only has a baseless install while the PIPA Lite can only be installed with its base. This makes the Urbn the better choice for travel (who wants to carry around a heavy car seat base).

The Nuna PIPA comes in fourth at 7.9 lbs. This seat is a couple pounds heavier than its sister, the PIPA Lite, and a few ounces more than the PIPA Urbn. However, like the Urbn it boasts a few extra features like a Dream Drape and peekaboo window on the canopy. However, unlike the other two PIPA options it can be installed both with and without its base — a huge advantage for parents who want to use their car seat for everyday use AND for travel. With side-impact body coverage, true lock installation, and green-for-go safety indicators, the PIPA ensures safety and convenience for parents, and the ultimate comfort for babies. 

If a couple of extra pounds doesn’t stress you out, the rest of the options on our list are all easy to carry around and come with more generous weight limits as well as their own unique features. 

For parents in a wheelchair or who have other physical considerations, the Maxi-Cosi Coral XP is a great option as it can be easier to maneuver. As noted above, this seat is designed with a unique inner carrier that weighs only 5 lbs and can be removed and carried by two soft handles or a cross-body strap.

Lightweight Seat Supremacy  

While weight may not be the most crucial factor for everyone when choosing an infant car seat, it can make a significant difference for many parents.  

Lightweight options offer convenience and portability, reducing physical strain and making everyday tasks more manageable. From navigating stairs and public transportation to travelling and moving the seat between cars, a lighter car seat can make all the difference! 

Ultimately, the most important factor is ensuring your child's safety, so be sure to choose a car seat that meets all safety standards and is properly installed. Remember, you can always refer to our article, The Ultimate Infant Car Seat Buying Guide, for more comprehensive information on selecting the perfect car seat for your family.