Before we jump into the features that the best convertible cribs share lets have a look at what convertible cribs are and how they differ. There are a couple of different types of convertible cribs to consider:
A) 3-in-1 Crib: The 3-in-1 crib can be converted from a crib into a daybed and into a toddler bed.
B) 4-in-1 Crib: The 4-in-1 crib can be converted from a crib into a toddler bed, a daybed and a full-sized bed.
C) 5-in-1 Crib: The 5-in-1 crib can be converted from a crib to a toddler bed, a daybed, a loveseat, and a full-sized bed.
As you might have noticed, the convertible cribs vary by duration of use. In the convertible crib category the 3-in-1 type is used for the shortest period of time and 5-in-1 can last the whole childhood.
Here are some things you need to be looking for before you jump in:
1) Convertability - Not all cribs can be converted in the reverse direction i.e. you might not be able to convert the toddler bed back into a crib if you wanted to reuse the crib. Some cribs are convertible. We highly recommend you figure out whether this is an important requirement before going shopping.
2) Ease of use/Comfort - The best convertible cribs use a one hand drop and lift system. The easier the crib is to use and the more comfortable it is, the easier it will be to put your little one to sleep. After all, their comfort is what you're striving for. The more relaxed and comfortable they are, the better they sleep. That gives you more time to get to the other things in your life.
3) Safety - This is a top consideration for all parents when they are shopping for convertible cribs. Even though most cribs manufactured or imported have to meet strict safety regulations it helps to do your own research. Some baby furniture manufacturers take safety more seriously than others. Look for the brands such as Da Vinci and Graco that value safety above all else.
4) Cost - When you just start out looking for cribs you will be shocked at the prices of convertible ones vs the regular ones. Its easier to understand the price differences when you consider the longevity of a convertible crib. Most kids will outgrow the regular crib by the time they reach 2 years of age. This is when you go shopping for a single bed for your toddler. Then comes a few years of growth spurts where your kids outgrow the smaller beds too. A good convertible bed will last you through several of these phases of your kid's life. Not only is this more economical it helps your kid sleep a lot better because of the familiarity with the bed.