Best forParents looking for a convertible car seat that can quickly and easily be installed with a seatbelt
Top BenefitsClickTight for easy installation, easy to level and tighten, tether and UAS storage
ConsiderationsHeavy, removing the car seat cover is complicated by the ClickTight feature, no infant insert
Bottom lineThe Britax Advocate ClickTight convertible car seat is super easy to install, features really nice padding for your growing child and includes extendable headrest and no-rethreading harness height adjustment so it can easily grow with your child.
Graduating from an infant to a convertible car seat is a big deal for little ones and parents alike. But there's a lot to consider when it's time to change seats, from the make, model and year of your car to how often you’ll be moving the car seat around. One easy answer is the Britax Advocate ClickTight convertible car seat, which boasts a number of features designed to make your life a whole lot easier. First, there's the ClickTight feature (which makes seatbelt installation a breeze) and the harness height adjustor (translation: you won’t have to rethread the harness with each growth spurt). Best of all, our parent testers said that they were able to install the Britax Advocate ClickTight in 30 minutes or less. (As a side note, all of the car seats that we tested have been previously crash tested by the manufacturer and approved for use in Canada by Transport Canada and Health Canada.)
One of the best parts of the Britax Advocate is the ClickTight feature. Turn the ClickTight dial clockwise and the bottom of the seat swings up like a car trunk, giving you easy access to the belt path underneath. We found that it took considerable finger strength and coordination to open the ClickTight dial—though, on the plus side, that makes it much too hard for a little one to open. We also appreciated that the Britax Advocate ClickTight has separate storage compartments for both the tether and LUAS connectors.
EASE OF INSTALLATION WITH LUAS (A.K.A. UAS OR LATCH)
Every parent approaches a car seat install with different expectations and levels of experience, so don’t fret if this is your first rodeo—more practice will make the movements easier to master. Clearly illustrated and chockfull of helpful diagrams, the user guide that accompanies the Britax Advocate ClickTight is pretty easy to follow—and it's colour coded to instruction labels on the car seat.
This car seat has seven recline positions to help you achieve a level install and provide the correct recline angle for your babe—from deep recline for newborns to a more upright seat for older babies and toddlers to completely upright in the forward-facing position. In our lab tests, our editors didn't have much difficulty levelling out the car seat and tightening it into position (no towel or pool noodle was needed). Our parent testers had an equally positive experience, reporting that this was very easy. This is thanks to the colour-coded level indicator built into the side of the seat, which clearly shows when the seat is at the right angle for each seat position (rear vs. forward facing). To recline the seat, you simply squeeze the red recline adjustment handle at the base of the seat. If you find the seat sticks—something both editors and parent testers noticed—simply press down on the front of the seat cushion while you compress the recline adjustment handle. As for the anti-rebound bar, we recommend that you practice installing and uninstalling this feature on a flat surface before you have to install the seat in your car.
Attaching the LUAS (Lower Universal Anchorage System) connectors rear- or forward-facing was quite simple, but detaching was trickier as they don't feature an auto-release button. Because of the rear-facing angling, most of our parent testers had to move their front passenger seat forward to accommodate the car seat. When you move to a forward-facing install, don’t forget to remove the anti-rebound bar (it’s no longer needed).
While we needed to rely on the images in the manual to figure out how to thread the LUAS belt through the appropriate pathway, tightening the LUAS belt was surprisingly easy. During our lab installations, getting the seat secure—so that it couldn’t be moved more than an inch in any direction when tugged at the belt path—did not require a lot of muscle in either the rear- and forward-facing positions.
The Britax Advocate ClickTight is hands down one of the easiest convertible car seats to install using the vehicle seat belt that we’ve tested—and we’ve tested a lot. In the lab, we found being able to flip up the seat with the ClickTight system to access the clearly labelled and colour-coded belt path extremely helpful, and our parent testers gave us positive feedback about their rear-facing installs, too. None of our parent testers had any issues getting their car seats level or tight, which is similar to our experiences during lab testing. We were also big fans of the recline indicator near the base of the seat when it came to checking whether or not the seat was level.
Seat belts in newer vehicles have a locking mechanism, which holds the car seat securely in place. (If you have an older vehicle without locking belts, you’ll need a locking clip to install this car seat with the seat belt.) To engage the locking mechanism, you’ll need to slowly pull the seat belt all the way out and then let it retract; you’ll hear the locking mechanism clicking as the belt retracts. It can be a bit tricky to ensure that the belt doesn’t twist as you’re letting it retract and lock, but this is crucial for keeping your child safe and secure (twists add stress to a belt and it may not be as strong as a flat-lying belt if you’re in a crash).
The secret to the forward-facing install of the Britax Advocate ClickTight is to remove (and loosen) the tether from its storage compartment on the rear of the seat before you start securing the other straps. The last thing you want to do is finish installing your car seat, only to realize that you forgot to remove the tether, thus forcing you to uninstall and start all over again (we made this mistake so you don’t have to). When you’re installing the seat in the forward-facing position, you have to attach the tether strap to the tether anchor to stabilize the seat. The tether anchor is typically found on the back of the seat, on the floor behind the seat or on the shelf behind the rear seat in a sedan, but be sure to consult your vehicle’s manual to locate the correct anchor in your vehicle. We found it easy to attach, tighten and detach the Britax Advocate ClickTight’s tether strap, and all of our parent testers strongly agreed.
No matter how much space you think you have, we’d recommend installing any car seat before you buy it—some cars and car seats simply aren’t compatible. The Britax Advocate ClickTight has a headrest that expands from 24 inches to 29 inches as your child grows. The shorter starting height means it’s less likely you’ll have to move the front vehicle seats forward a lot to accommodate this car seat when you’re installing it at the infant recline angle. And the adjustability means you’ll still have a nice tall seat back as your little one grows.
While the adjustable height is a space-saver, the Britax Advocate ClickTight’s 19.5-inch width is on the bulky side. You’d only be able to fit two of these car seats in a lot of vehicles and, depending on the contour of the vehicle seats, you may only be able to get one seat in the centre of the vehicle in some smaller cars. Whether this is an issue or not will really depend on the size of your family and your vehicle.
Weighing in at 30.1 pounds thanks to a steel frame and ClickTight install feature, the Britax Advocate ClickTight is one of the heavier convertible car seats that we tested. Typically, heavier car seats are best installed once and left in the same car. However, ClickTight will save you a good chunk of time during installation if you suddenly have to switch vehicles.
All of our parent testers liked the soft, removable padding on the straps of the safety harness and reported that it sat comfortably against their children's bodies. While we appreciate the extra comfort offered by the ez-buckle belly pad, the additional padding makes buckle access slightly difficult and you’ll definitely need two hands to open and close the harness. On the plus side, it wasn't hard to figure out how everything clipped together. During our lab testing, we found that the buckle was easy to open, but some hand strength is required. The harness lever, located just below the seat cushion, also makes it easy to adjust the harness length for a secure fit—just lift the lever and pull on the straps to loosen or pull the strap under the lever to tighten.
The built-in harness height adjustor at the top of the seat and the harness adjuster strap near the base of the seat make it easy to adjust the fit of the harness as your little one grows without having to rethread the harness. In rear-facing, the harness should always be at or just below your child’s shoulders (never above), while in forward-facing, they should always be at or just above your kid’s shoulders (never below). Because the harness is built-in, removing it for cleaning or replacement isn't so simple. During testing, we called Britax’s customer service team for some much-needed pointers.
Thanks to a base designed to absorb impact and a frame stabilized with steel and side-impact protection, all of our parent testers reported that their children felt safe and secure in this car seat. The soft, plush foam and padding on the Britax Advocate ClickTight is made from a blend of polyurethane foam padding and polyester fiber batting. If your family loves to road trip, your little one will appreciate the removable comfort pillow that provides extra cushioning in the seat and hips. There’s also additional (removable) padding on the upper portion of the harness.
Fully removable, the seat cover must be hand washed with cold water and mild soap and line dried to prevent shrinking. Before you remove and wash the cover, you’ll need to carefully review the instructions—although the ClickTight feature makes installing the seat in the car a breeze, it makes removing the cover rather difficult. The shell, harness and side cushions of the car seat can be sponge cleaned and towel dried.
With plenty of padding (both built in and removable) and silky smooth, breathable fabric, we’re not surprised that our parent testers gave the Britax Advocate ClickTight top marks for comfort. Thanks to seven recline positions, all of our parent testers reported that they were able find a comfortable position for their children while remaining within the safest install position range. Only one of our parent testers reported having a dozing child in the car seat, but said their child was able to comfortably nap in the Britax Advocate ClickTight.
All of our parent testers rated the Britax Advocate ClickTight’s quality and ease of use highly and most felt that it offered very good value for its price point. It's no surprise, then, that they all felt that this car seat is worthy of the Today’s Parent Approved seal and said they'd recommend it to other parents. Our editors appreciated the plush, foam-filled seat cover and the easy harness-height adjustability, but it's the ClickTight feature that really sold us on this car seat—it's hard to beat the ease of installation and the security that it offers.