MOTORING ESSENTIALS GUIDE

SAFETY AND CARE 

Best car seat protectors in 2018 Reviewed

Despite some allegations such as indentations and a rubber residue left by some unrecommended car seat protectors, the odds are in favor of installing a good car seat protector.

The distractive gloom of naysayers about car seat protectors may make you lose the big picture.

Read on to learn why you need a car seat protector, how to install it, the best car seat protectors analyzed, where to get them and much more...

Top 10 Best Car Seat Protectors Review

Which are the best three of these protectors? 

​EDITOR'S PICK

Here are our top 3 best rated car seat protectors
1. Brica Guardian car seat protectorBrica Car Seat ProtectorSuperior quality fabric and universal compatibility
2. Munchkin car seat protector Munchkin Auto Seat Protector-Excellent structure with stabilizing wedges.
-Affordable price.
3. Summer Infant duo mat for car seat Summer Infant Duo MatCrash tested and durable vinyl texture.

1. Brica

Brica Guardian car seat protector

Overview

This is currently the best selling car seat protector in the market. Brica is a super quality product that guarantees your child’s safety through its advanced non-slip technology.

Features ​

The Good 

  • Dual non-slip technology on both front and reverse side
  • Non bleach material. Easy to clean grime resistant and waterproof material
  • Sturdy long-lasting material
  • Compatible with all car seat types (rear, front or convertible)
  • Adjustable headrest strap increases stability

Not so Good 

  •  Relatively higher price 
  •  Lack of pockets 
2. Munchkin

Munchkin Car Seat Protector

Overview

Munchkin Auto has made an excellent yet affordable car seat protector and its quality justifies its second best selling position.

Features

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The Good 

  • High quality yet affordable 
  • Compression and skid free sturdy and textured material 
  • Latch compatibility 
  • Front storage pockets 
  • Easy to clean
  • Stain free due to its black color
  • Incredibly affordable 

Not so Good 

  • The back cover is short and therefore not appropriate with rear facing car seats 
  • Pockets are out of easy access by the kid 
3. Summer Infant Duo Mat

Summer Infant duo mat for car seat

Overview

This is also an excellent product and a top selling cool car seat cover rated 4.5 out 5 by hundreds of customers.

​Features 

The Good 

  • Long lasting and non-slip material 
  • Waterproof plastic material-easy to clean and protects upholstery 
  • Affordable price 
  • Crash tested  
  • Latch compatibility 

Not so Good 

  • It lacks headrest straps that could increase stability 
4. Lusso Gear
Lusso Gear car seat protector pad

Overview

Rated 4.9 out of 5 by customers, Lusso Gear is a premium quality car seat protector that is all about style, function, and durability, giving an excellent value for money.

Features

The Good 

  • Heavy-duty premium quality and long-lasting material 
  • Non-slip guarantee 
  • Universal design 
  • Extra wide base to catch more trash 
  • Money back guarantee

Not so Good 

  • Relatively higher price  

5. Royal Oxford 

Royal Oxford car seat protector

Overview

Royal Oxford luxury car seat protector is a high-end luxury car seat mat and its quality does not betray this fact. It is also one of the oldest and most ingenious car seat mats under car seats.

Features

The Good 

  • Superior quality and durability of individually handmade fabric 
  • Universal compatibility 
  • Non-slip guarantee 
  • Applicable to pets, babies, and "dirty" adults 
  • Money back guarantee

Not so Good 

  • The leather polish may leave stains on light colored seats  
  • Premium price  
6. Britax 

Britax Car Seat Protector

Overview

Britax car seat protector is a highly sought-after seat accessory and its best in class engineering is worth the mention.

Features​

The Good 

  • Durability  
  • Raised edges that trap all debris  
  • Waterproof and easy to wash 
  • Compact and latch compatible  
  • Top rated 

Not so Good 

  • Does not cover the back of the seat  
  • Crash tested with Britax car seats only  
  • Lacks storage bags  
7. Freddie & Sabbie
Freddie & Sabbie car seat saver mat

Overview

Parents love this elegant and top rated car seat covers from Freddie and Sabbie due to its simplicity-easy to install, easy to clean, while maintaining high standards of quality and reliability.

Features ​

The Good 

  • Durable and eco-friendly  
  • It is wider to cover more back seat area  
  • Non-slip guarantee
  • Universal compatibility   
  • Free shipping and money back guarantee
  • Affordable price    

Not so Good 

  • Limited stock 
8. Cheekie Monkie 
Cheekie Monkie car seat protector

Cheekie Monkie’s super seat saver mat has awesome features that guarantee to maintain your car upholstery in perfect condition, whether leather or cloth while lasting over the long haul.

Features ​

The Good 

  • Universal design to fit all vehicle seats 
  • Covers the back, bottom, and front of the seat 
  • Non-slip reinforcement 
  • Long lasting material    
  • Large expandable front pockets 
  • Affordable price    

Not so Good 

  • Front pockets are hardly accessible by the child 
  • Relatively pricey  
9. PoppyTootToot
PoppyTootToot car seat protector

Overview 

Designed by experts who are parents themselves, this car seat saver from PoppyTootToot has been designed with an obsession for your child’s safety and your need for neatness and organization in the car.

Features ​

The Good 

  • Non-slip guarantee 
  • High-quality material prevents any kind of damage to the car seat 
  • Wide enough to cover the cas seat's entire length 
  • Easy to clean  
  • Affordable price  
  • Solves your worry of what to put under car seat to protect leather    
  • Money back guarantee  

Not so Good 

  • Storage pockets are not easily accessible by the child 
10. Glangels 
Glangels waterproof car seat cover

Overview 

Glangels baby car seat protector is a super elegant spill proof car seat cover that promises safety in all situations.

Features ​

The Good 

  • Incredibly lightweight  
  • The combination of dark gray Oxford and gray PU leather elegantly matches with your car interior  
  • Crash tested 
  • No-questions asked money back guarantee  
  • Extra-large storage bags 

Not so Good 

  • Relatively higher price  
  • The baby car seats on the fabric part which may accelerate its wear  

Benefits of a car seat protector 

Ponder this; your child get the Styrofoam packed milkshake, jumps into his booster car seat, along the way he starts his tantrums and you look back to find that he has torn the edge of the cup and the shake is spurting out all over him and his seat. You can do some cleaning but later on you definitely have to take the seat out and wash it. How do you like it?

This is where the importance of the toddler car seat protector comes into good use. The shake would just have pooled on the car seat saver mat and saved you the hassle of washing the car seat.

  • Shields your car seat from dirt and spills
  • Preventing damage to the backseat   
  • Guards the car seat from kicks 
  • Easy to wash   
  • Non-slip feature  
  • Organizing baby items

​(i) Shields your car seat from dirt and spills-For most toddlers, boarding the car is quite a scene. They make a mess of themselves and the car interior, climbing, hopping on the backseat before they get in their baby car seat. Besides, there are those who will advise you to make sure that the child does not eat anything in the car but that is simply hogwash. Who has ever managed to control a child’s eating schedule? The point is, a child will always demand snacks, sippy cups or any other grabs while on the move. Within no time the car interior will be cruddy and littered. With a waterproof seat cover to go under car seat, very little cleaning would be needed.

(ii) Preventing damage to the backseat-there is lots of damage to the back seat when a car seat protector is not used. First, the baby car seat exerts undue pressure on the back seat, leaving permanent indentation and scratch marks. Secondly, when the car is in motion, there is continuous rubbing between the baby cars seat base and the vehicle seat, which gradually wears out the back seat leather or fabric. Lastly, the crumbs and other stuff the kid strews are mashed into the back seat fabric by the shifting child car seat and the result is certainly disgusting.

Rear facing car seat

Rear facing car seat installed without a car seat protector

(iii) Guards the car seat from baby kicks-Some seat covers also feature back of the front seat protector, to guard against the kicks of the child’s restless feet, for kids on front facing and booster car seats. If your child is at the age where he/she is using the rear facing car seats, make sure the car seat protector mat is long enough to cover the back seat against his or her kicks. On a lighter note, this is more common with boys and thus finding something that will suit a baby car seat stroller combo can be a great saving. 

Car seat protector with front of seat cover

Car seat protector covering the front of the back seat

(iv) Easy to wash - most of the car seat protectors are waterproof making their washing hassle free. For non-staining dirt or mud, you may just spot clean the spill proof car seat cover and you are good to go, whereas if it is something more serious like juice spill or getting soiled, gentle hand washing will return it to its previous spotless condition. By design, majority of the seat covers for under car seats are in dark colors to minimize discernible stain.

​(v) Non-slip Feature-Unlike towels, most car seat covers feature non-slip straps and sturdy non slip material that can hold them tightly in position and prevent the baby seat from shifting in case of an impact. Consequently, some of the auto seat covers are textured on the underside to increase the grip on the vehicle upholstery. After all, it's grievous to have something that will loosen in case of a crash.

​(vi) Organizing Baby Items-Some best seat protectors for car seats feature pockets thus enabling you to keep baby things at close range and organized. The pockets can be at the sides or front, within reach or out of reach of the child, so you should take that into consideration when choosing your car seat protector. There can also be one or multiple pockets.

How do you about the car seat protector installation?

Please first have a look at this short video about car seat protector installation

The different seat savers for car seats have differences in compatibility and different installation procedures. It is therefore important to first confirm with the car manufacturer whether the car seat protector of your choice suits your car seat.

There are general guidelines though: first, you should ensure that installation does not necessitate adjustment of the car seat. If it does, then this is a safety risk (risk of shifting when the car is in motion) and the seat saver should be returned to the seller. Or else, try fitting it with a different car seat or a different car altogether.

Some car seats protectors can be used with most car seats but a majority of them such a Britax are custom made baby car seat covers. A major issue connected with this is latch compatibility. The pad for under car seat should not lead the seat belt to generate slack during movement or in a crash.

To determine slack:

First, install the baby car seat best rated for your car seat mat and lock the car seat belt or latch tightly in place. Next, mark the seat belt or latch position with a marker, loosen it and remove the car seat protector.

Finally, re-position the baby car seat without the car seat cover and reattach the seat belt and latch at the marked position. If the car seat movement is too free (more than an inch), then that car seat mat is not the correct match.

In general, each car seat protector comes with a manual and the instructions should guide you on the product-specific installation procedure.

Safety concerns

In connection to the above, concerns have been raised regarding safety with the under car seat protector. However, our verdict is that safety should be a concern with incompatible and untested car seat protectors.

We only research and recommend compatible, non-slip and crash tested car seat mats. This is what you should look out for when purchasing a car seat cover and should always confirm from the manual and the manufacturer.

Again by following the installation instructions visited above, rest assured that you have done it right.

Car seat protector checklist

Factors to consider when choosing a car seat protector 

  • Quality/ durability
  • Safety  
  • Design compatibility and dimensions
  • Aesthetics  
  • Maintenance requirement 
  • Online reviews 
  • Maintenance requirement 
  • Cost 

With more and more brands of seat protectors for under child seats entering the market by the day, it can be daunting a task trying to find the best car seat cover. Even though we have done an exhaustive review above, we can't simply rest on our laurels and let's, therefore, share the factors that you should look out for.

​(i) Quality/durability- the hallmark of any car seat protector review is quality. You are a buying the protector to protect your seat against damage, wear and tear, indentations, stains and so on, protect your child or pet by securing the car seat firmly in position, whilst lasting over the long haul (at least 5 years). The car seat cover should therefore be able to do exactly that. In order to meet these expectations, the seat protector material needs to be heavy duty sturdy, waterproof and color safe, along with proper safety features. The best materials for seat covers worth mentioning here are leather, vinyl, rubber and neoprene.

(ii) Safety- safety on the road is nonbargainable, especially when it comes to children. The car seat mat should be able to hold the car seat in position without generating slack in all kinds of car motions, such as acceleration/deceleration, turn off, overtaking, emergency braking, car crash and so on. It also needs to have high-quality non-slip cladding, pads or spots, head straps and latch anchors that all ensure everything stays as taut as it can best be. Above all, confirm that the car seat protector has been crash tested by the manufacturer.

(iii) Design compatibility and dimensions- car seat protectors are coming in different designs; some are universally compatible while others are car specific. However, whatever car seat liner you choose, it is advisable to try it out and check whether it matches your car seat and also confirm its compatibility details from the product manual or the manufacturer. These features include covering the entire car seat, enough anchors for the car seat belt and latch, optimal thickness that won’t generate slack while ensuring durability.

(iv) Aesthetics- you spend a lot to spruce up your car’s interior and therefore the car seat protector needn’t come to reverse this gain. Luckily so, they are now in different shades of whatever color you might choose, as well as creative designs. Overall, we recommend choosing a dark color if your car seat is light and vice versa.

(v) Negligible maintenance requirement- you also spend quite a pretty sum on maintenance of the car items and so if you can have an accessory that won’t create additional maintenance costs, the better. To achieve this, the car seat pad material should be waterproof, stain free and color safe to make it easy to clean, essentially only requiring spot cleaning most of the times.

(vi) Online reviews-unless it’s a new product release, almost all car seat protectors will have customer reviews on various forums or e-commerce sites where they leave feedback. You should therefore check for the reviews’ average rating, comments and the number of reviews. The reviewers are people who have had first-hand experience with the product and even though by nature some people tend to overlook either a positive or negative attribute, the average rating is a good indicator of what you should expect with the product. Most people also don’t bother to leave feedback, and therefore, a relatively higher number of reviewers might imply that the product is popular, especially if the average rating is high.

customer reviews of the best car seat protectors

(vii) Cost- all the effort to review the car seat protector checklist adds up to naught if the product you end up with exceeds your budget. Luckily, there are good car seat protectors across various price segments and you should reiterate until you have something that matches your pocket.

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