Graco has a long history of making rear facing only car seats. The SnugRide Click Connect 40 offers the highest weight limit on the market. With a maximum weight and height limit of 40 pounds or 35 inches tall, this seat fits Littles big and small.
CSFTL Quick Stats
- Weight Range: 4-40 pounds (not available in Canada)
- Height Range: up to 35″
- Shell Height: 19.5″ head support fully extended
- Lowest Harness Position: 5″ with infant insert
- Weight (carrier only): 9.35 pounds
- Expiration: 7 years
- Handle position: Any locked position
- Seat belt lock off
- No rethread harness
- 2 position adjustable crotch strap measuring 4.5″ and 6.5″ plus newborn setting
- 8 recline positions
- Infant insert for infants and preemie pillow insert for infants who weigh less than 12 pounds
The 5 inch lowest harness position, the added inserts for infants under 12 pounds, and the adjustable crotch buckle positions mean that this seat will fit infants of most sizes well.
The Click Connect 40 comes with infant inserts that can be used for babies twelve pounds and under. The infant insert can be removed before that as long as the harness is even with or below the baby’s shoulders and baby fits properly. The chest clip should be placed at armpit height and the harness should pass the pinch test. The Click Connect 40 also comes with harness pads that can be removed at any time.
Installation With the Base
The Click Connect 40 has eight recline positions and a three color angle indicator light blue for 0-3 months, dark blue for 3+ months, and red, which should never show when installed properly. The base is large and protrudes quite a ways from the vehicle seat. For vehicles that are more compact front to back, you will have limited use of the recline positions. In the Town and Country, the seat could get to recline position eight comfortably. This vehicle has very sloped seats, which may help make more of the recline numbers usable. A colleague could only get to recline position three in the Dodge Journey though, which has much flatter vehicle seats.
The Click Connect 40 can be installed with either lower anchors or the seat belt, never both. When using the seat belt, use the lock off that is built into the base and you don’t have to lock the vehicle belts. In the van, the convenience button on the seat belt interfered with the seat belt installation so the seat had to be installed with the lower anchors. The lock off is required for all seat belt installations. The lock off is very easy to use, and is a great feature for vehicles without lower anchors in all seating positions. The seat belt is threaded over the open lock off, tighten belt, then snap lock off closed. No need to lock the belt, as the lock off does all the work for you! You will then check to make sure there is less than an inch of movement side to side at the belt path.
The Click Connect 40 has push-on lower anchor connectors which makes installation with lower anchors much easier. These lower anchors can only be used in vehicle positions with dedicated lower anchor positions. No lower anchor borrowing is allowed with this seat.
Installation Without the Base
The Click Connect 40 can also be installed without the base. This is great for travel and emergencies when you may not have the base with you. You will always install with the seat belt when not using the base.
There is a red line on the side of the bottom of the seat that needs to be parallel with the ground to ensure proper recline when not using the base. Practice installing the car seat without the base before needed as there is a learning curve to installing it baseless.
Fit to Child
Huggable Images Preemie doll: 4 pounds, 17 inches
Our preemie doll fits very well in the Click Connect 40. The harness is nicely below her shoulders and the harness passes the pinch test. She is under 12 pounds and is using both inserts. You can see even without using the newborn crotch buckle setting, Jo fits well. However, the Click Connect 40 does have a special low birth weight crotch buckle option as well. The crotch buckle will be in the closest position to baby, but will then be threaded back up into the farther away crotch buckle position in order to make the crotch buckle shorter and fit better on a small baby.
Huggable Images newborn- 7 pounds, 17 inches
Our newborn doll also fits well in the seat. She can use the infant insert or also fits well without it. She may benefit from the added support of the insert at this age though.
Our 9 month old model is 9 months old, weighs 23 pounds, and is 28.5 inches tall. He still fits well with plenty of growing room. This is a great seat for an infant who is bigger than average. At almost 10 pounds, the weight of the seat plus the weight of a heavier baby or toddler can be too heavy to carry for very long but it’s fine to leave the seat installed in the car and take the child in and out.
Our 2.5 year old model is 2.5 years old, weighs 26 pounds, and is 34 inches tall. This model is an inch shy of the maximum height limit, and she’s barely squeezing into the seat. She is comfortable in the seat.
- Eight recline settings
- Push on lower anchor connectors
- 4 pounds minimum weight
Another feature that hasn’t been talked about is the kick plate on the base. While it can be used at any time, it makes more sense for older, taller infants or toddlers who can reach the back seat. It can be helpful protecting your back seat from dirty shoes. The Click Connect 40 also has a very easy to use no-rethread harness system. Simply squeeze the red tabs together and move the harness and headrest to even with or just below the child’s shoulders.
When this car seat is installed on the plus one or jump seat of a minivan, Graco has confirmed up to 20% of the base can overhang the edge of the vehicle seat.
Important Information: Where to Find
FAA Approval– The Click Connect 40 is FAA approved for use without the base. The FAA statement is found in red on the large sticker on the side of the seat towards the back. Find the biggest sticker and look for the red writing towards the middle. This may need to be shown if traveling with this seat via airplane so it’s important to know where it is located.
Date of Manufacture– The Click Connect 40 has a 7 year expiration. You can find the Date of Manufacture (DOM) under the seat on a white sticker with the model number as well. On the base, it’s down in the well of the base on an identical white sticker. Add 7 years to this date and that is when the seat is no longer usable and should be disposed of.
This seat will definitely give you your money’s worth. It fits small babies, fits younger toddlers, can work in a three across, and if you have the space it gives plenty of leg room for those growing legs! Even though this seat can fit many kids until age two, the recommendation is to continue rear facing until closer to four years old so you will still want a convertible seat after this seat is outgrown (read our article, The Science Behind Rear Facing). The biggest downside is it does take up a lot of room, so trying before you buy is always encouraged.
Graco did not provide this seat for review, and I was not compensated in any way from Graco. As always, thoughts are all my own.
Originally written by Jennifer Penick. Edits maintained by CSFTL.