Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Review

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In today’s Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 review, we aim to give you an unbiased in-depth analysis of the product so you can decide whether this is for you.  

The Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 is a four-position infant car seat that is easy to install and maintain. With thousands of positive reviews, it’s an affordable car seat that’s typically priced at around $200. 

In general, we found the Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 infant car seat to be easy to install and adjust. Numerous customer reviews confirm the safety and comfort of the side-impact padding. Multiple reports verify that the SnugLock 35 protects children during accidents.

The only downside to this car seat is that the shade canopy interferes with the carrying handle. Many users have had trouble using the shade canopy while carrying it.

Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Review:  Image: Amazon
Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Image: Amazon

Pros & Cons of Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35

Pros

  • Fully compatible with Graco ClickConnect Strollers. 
  • Incorporates a four-position recline base. 
  • Lightweight and easy to install. 

Cons

  • Canopy design interferes with the carrying handle
  • Does not come with small infant insert for lighter babies. 
  • Does not come with a supportive headrest for infants. 

What is the Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35

Graci SnugRide SnugLock 35 is a rear-facing infant seat best suited for infants from 4-35lb and upto 35”

Click! That’s the sound of a secure install. 

The SnugRide has been designed to make it as easy and painless for parents in installing their child carrier, with three simple steps that can be completed without any hassle or difficulty whatsoever – no matter whether you’re using vehicle belts or LATCH connectors on your car seats (or both!). 

Tip: Since your baby will be rear-facing and on the back seat, you might consider placing a little car seat mirror to keep an eye on your child while driving

What comes with Graco SnugLock SnugRide 35

The Graco SnugRide 35 is a car seat with everything you need for your little one. It has an adjustable base that can be set to four different positions, making it easy and comfortable no matter what age or size they grow into! 

The level indicator makes sure their head stays protected while still allowing room above them so sunlight doesn’t bother anyone on long trips out of necessity too. 

It’s great because it comes with all of the necessary hardware, plus an adjustable base so you don’t have any issues when installing your new passenger in their own personal space!

Not only will they feel comfortable thanks primarily due to its 4 recline positions, but also shading canopy which helps protect them against harmful UV rays while driving or resting on long journeys. 

Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Review :  Image: Amazon
Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Image: Amazon

Who is Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 for

The Graco infant car seat is designed for parents who are looking for a lightweight and easy-to-use infant car seat. It features a one-hand adjustable harness and stay-in-car base, which makes it quick and easy to install. 

The seat also includes a five-point harness system and EPS energy-absorbing foam for safety and comfort. Additionally, the SnugLock 35 has a washable seat cover and is compatible with all Graco strollers. 

The Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 is for children from 4-35 pounds weight and upto 35 inches height. It is the perfect choice for parents who wish to use it with a Connect stroller as it provide a secure and easy, one-step attachment to all Click Connect strollers. 

Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Review :  Image: Amazon
Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Image: Amazon

How To Choose? Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 vs. Lite LX

The Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 has another model namely SnugLock 35 Lite LX that incorporates more or less the same features as SnugLock 35. However, there are a few features that distinct these two models. 

The no-rethread harness on the SnugRide Click Connect 35 LX allows you to adjust the headrest and harness shoulder straps at the same time. The SnugRide Click 35 LX Car Seat’s base features an In Right LATCH system for quick LATCH attachment and a seat belt lock-off for quicker seat belt installation. 

On the contrary, to adjust the harness shoulder straps, the SnugRide Click 35 Car Seat must be manually rethreaded. The In Right LATCH function is not available on the base. However, both of these car seats can fit a newborn weighing 4-35 pounds and standing 32 inches tall.

FeaturesGraco SnugRide SnugLock 35Graco SnugRide 35 Lite LX
Price$180$100
ProsInexpensive, better crash results, easy install with beltLightweight, easy to carry, easy install without the base
Characteristic SummaryGenerally average seat, but the price is right for the budget-mindedBelow average results in most metrics despite a promising weight
Crash Test HIC Score606693
Minimum Passenger Weight1.81 kg | 4 lbs1.81 kg | 4 lbs

Overall Rating

  • Overall: ⭐⭐⭐ 3 out of 5
  • Safety: ⭐⭐ 2 out of 5
  • Durability: ⭐⭐⭐ 3 out of 5
  • Ease of Use: ⭐⭐⭐ 3 out of 5
  • Market Consensus: ⭐⭐⭐ 3 out of 5
Our evaluation of this product is based on 4 metrics: 1) Safety, 2) Durability and 3) Ease of use, and 4) Market Consensus. We write about each of these metrics in its own section below. 

#1. Safety: How Safe is Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35? 

Total Safety Score = ⭐⭐ (2 out of 5)

In terms of Safety, we rate the Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 based on the formula below: 

Safety Score = Safety Features + Certifications + Recall/Quality Issues 

Safety Features ⭐⭐⭐(3 out of 5)

  • 5-Point Harness tightener. 
  • Rotating canopy provides shade & sun protection. 
  • Equipped with energy-absorbing foam. 
  • Side-impact tested for occupant retention. 

The SnugLock 35’s crash test results are somewhat better than average, with one sensor reading being close to the best result while another offers a more below-average performance. 

For head impact (HIC score), Graco averaged 606 and the maximum allowed 1000; Chicco Keyfit 30 came out on top at 330 .

The combined scores for this Graco are better than average, but we wish the HIC sensor result was more positive. This seat still provides good quality at an affordable price point!

Safety Certifications ⭐⭐⭐(3 out of 5)

Cars: The SnugLock system on this car seat helps to keep your child safe and secure in the seat, and the adjustable harness system ensures a comfortable and custom fit for your child. The SnugRide SnugLock 35 car seat also has a built-in recline feature that helps to keep your child’s head and neck in a comfortable position during naps or long rides.

The Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 car seat is easy to install and use, and it comes with a user manual that walks you through the process step-by-step. This car seat is also comfortable for your child, with plush fabric and padding that makes it cozy for long rides.

Flights: While the Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 is a great car seat for everyday use, it may not be ideal for flights. Because the car seat has a rigid base, it can be difficult to fit into the tight spaces available on an airplane. 

Additionally, the weight of the car seat and infant can cause discomfort for other passengers if they are seated next to you. If you plan to use the Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 on an airplane, we recommend using a travel bag that has wheels to make it easier to transport through the airport.

Recall/Quality Issues ⭐⭐(2 out of 5)

A mom with a recall issue stated that her baby arrived 4 weeks before the due date, hence being lighter in weight. This model does not come with a small infant insert, which is why she concluded that the seat shall not be safe for her infant and decided to return. Another mom stated that the canopy is the same rougher fabric as the inner seat fabric. Also this canopy moves somewhat more difficult than the older model. It has a louder click sound, and you have to wiggle and fight with it to get it to go up and down.

Tips: Keep your receipt. You should examine all sections of the seat as soon as you receive it. The sooner you can reach out to customer support, the better, as they might be slow to respond at times. Be ready to take pictures of the product defects if any. 

#2. Durability: How Long Can you Use Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35?

Durability Score = ⭐⭐⭐(3 out of 5)

In terms of Durability, we rate the Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 with a 5 star based on the formula below: 

Durability Score = Range of Use + Expiration + Warranty

Range of Use ⭐⭐⭐⭐(4 out of 5)

  • Minimum weight limit recommendation: ‎4 Pounds (1.8kg)
  • Maximum weight limit recommendation: ‎35 Pounds (15.9kg)
  • Maximum height limit recommendation: 32 Inches (81.3cm)
For the best use of the car seat, the manufacturer recommends the Range of Use. Exceeding those limits might be okay if you had to. In the end, though, it is about risk, safety, and your child’s comfort.If your baby weighs less than the minimum weight limit, you should not put them in the car seat. Additionally, the maximum weight and height limit also tells you if your child has outgrown the car seat, if you can’t already tell or if they aren’t complaining about it.

Expiration ⭐⭐⭐⭐(4 out of 5)

7 years from manufacture date.

Do pay attention to the expiration date as a guideline for your child’s safety. Manufacturers of infant car seats provide this information based on the design and materials they use. Car seats that have passed their expiration dates are more likely to have safety issues due to the average estimated wear and tear.

Warranty ⭐⭐⭐⭐ (4 out of 5)

1-year warranty from date of purchase. Same as others.

#3. Ease of Use: How Will Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 fit into your car?

Ease of Use Score: ⭐⭐⭐(3 out of 5)

In terms of Ease of Use, we rate the Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 with a 5 star based on the formula below: 

Ease of use = 

Installation + Adjustability + Maintenance + Carry +Stroller Compatibility

Installation ⭐⭐⭐⭐(4 out of 5)

The SnugLock 35 has clip-style LATCH anchors that are often easier to put on and harder take off than the installation using a regular seat belt. This method should be more difficult, making it an improvement over previous models of infant seats in this area of manufacture!

The metal loops at each end connect easily with your vehicle’s safety belts (top left), while tightenings straps tighten across locks when closed(above right). The base feels ultra-stable and this latch strap installation method is ranked second easiest. 

The vehicle belt and the base are used to install the SnugLock 35 car seat. This is the simplest way to install this seat. The installation is straightforward, and the base’s belt lock-off aids in tightening the vehicle belt for a secure fit.

The foundation comes with an adjustable foot (above left) to ensure proper installation and a level (above right) with an indicator range to ensure proper installation.

Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Review: Source: Official Site 
Source: Official Site 

Adjustability ⭐⭐⭐(3 out of 5)

The Graco seat is a great choice for parents who are looking for an adjustable car seat. The seat can be adjusted to fit your child as they grow, and it also includes a built-in base that makes it easy to install in your car. 

Additionally, the car seat features a five-point harness system that will keep your child secure in their seat, and it also has a headrest that can be adjusted to provide additional support for your child’s head and neck.

This clasp and harness are characteristic of Graco and comparable to Graco newborn car seats that have been discontinued. The buckle is stiff and difficult to push, and the chest clip isn’t as smooth as it could be; while neither is impossible, they aren’t easy. 

With an accessible button and a relatively smooth sliding strap placed at the carrier’s foot, tightening and releasing the harness is average.

Carry-Around ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐(5 out of 5)

The SnugLock 35 car seat carrier is one of the lightest and most travel-friendly options in its class, weighing less than other carriers on test by as much 8 pounds! 

This could be an important consideration for you if your needs require frequent transport or long distances between parking spots.

Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Review:  Image: Amazon
Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Image: Amazon

Stroller Compatibility ⭐⭐(2 out of 5)

Graco infant car seats are only compatible with Graco click connect strollers. Because the SnugLock is so new, we’re hoping to see adapters for strollers other than Graco’s in the near future. 

In this case, the Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 XT Infant Car Seat is compatible with the Graco FastAction Fold Jogging Stroller and other Graco strollers with Click Connect technology.

Measures & Specs

  • Seat dimensions: ‎27.72 x 18.07 x 16.03 inches
  • Base dimensions: 23.35 x 9.37 x 15.35 inches
  • Material Type: Foam
  • Harness type: ‎5-Point
  • Item Weight: 14.7 pounds

Product Installation Video

#4. Market Consensus – What others say about Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35

Market Consensus ⭐⭐⭐(3 out of 5)

In terms of Customer Consensus, we rate the Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35  with a 5 star based on the formula below:

Market Consensus =
Customer Feedback (Quantative) + Expert Reviews (Qualitative)

Customer Reviews ⭐⭐(2 out of 5)

Overall Rating (4.9 out of 5 based on 901 ratings)

Note that for highly-rated products, we will avoid bombarding you with more praises about the product. We intentionally look for substantiated negative reviews or criticisms that add to our knowledge.  So, if you’re going to jump right into this section, know it has its own merits we’ve discussed before. 

Selected Critical Customer Reviews

⭐⭐⭐⭐I’m not sure if it’s all of the car seats or mine is defective, but the handle is a pain to use. It’s not seamless. When pushing the button, it will stop just above the top of the car seat. I have to move the handle and hear it click in to position before I can push the button and move it all the way down and out of the way to put baby in – Amazon Review. 

⭐ The shade does not come down far enough to block sun when attached to a stroller. The shade is stretchy and thin and NOT WEATHERPROOF so expect your child to get wet or snowed on going from car to building. (This is also a problem of length as mentioned above, it does not come down FAR ENOUGH) – Amazon Review. 

⭐⭐⭐My issue is with the padding, once you remove the infant insert, the seat has no padding, it’s so hard and I can only imagine super uncomfortable. I’m so disappointed because I purchased this seat because it has padding for comfort but only when you can use the infant insert – Amazon Review. 

Expert Reviews ⭐⭐⭐(3 out of 5)

⭐⭐⭐While there are some things to like about the Graco, it isn’t the best quality, and it still struggles with a canopy handle collision problem. If your wallet allows you to spend more, you should probably consider other options. Nevertheless, if your budget is limited, this seat is one to consider as it provides better than average crash results with easy installation-BabyGearLab

⭐⭐It’s lighter than the Chicco KeyFit 30 at 8.6 pounds, but it relies on hook latches for base installation instead of the easier push-button latches found on the Chicco and Britax models and most pricier seats. To secure a tight fit, you need to manually pull the straps for those hook latches, and that requires significantly more arm strength than the Chicco’s one-pull tightening system- The New York Times

Conclusion

The Graco SnugRide Snuglock 35 car seat outperforms the Graco SnugRide 35 Lite LX in certain critical parameters, but it falls short when compared to other car seats on the market. While we prefer the Graco brand, we don’t see why a parent should choose it over higher-scoring seats, those with better crash test results, or those with better ease of installation rankings.

FAQ

#1. What is SnugLock technology?

SnugLock technology installs in less than one minute using vehicle seat belt or LATCH. Graco ProtectPlus Engineered: a combination of the most rigorous crash tests that helps to protect your child in frontal, side, rear & rollover crashes.

#2. Is the Graco SnugRide 35 FAA approved?

Yes, the Graco SnugRide Click Connect 35 is FAA approved and passes the federal safety standards. You can install the seat alone or the seat with its base on a plane seat using the lap seat belt.

#3. How long is the Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Good For?

Expiration: The directions not to use the seat after 7 years after the date of manufacture are stamped onto the back of the carrier.


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Author
Shane
Shane is passionate about researching and comparing interesting baby stuff for his baby girl. After getting his Master's in Health Management in London, he worked for a top-tier naming and branding consulting firm based in the US. He helps with the research on this site.

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