First time parents have many difficult decisions almost from day one. And most of the time you have no idea if you have made the right choices until it is too late. That is why I have written this article on convertible cribs or what some call baby 4 in 1 cribs. My goal with this article is help those that are about to buy a crib decide if a convertible crib is right for them.
What is a Convertible Crib?
Being the father of two young boys I clearly remember all the time spent getting the babies rooms ready for the big arrival fresh paint, new carpet, curtains, pictures, toys, and of course the biggie…new furniture. Most of the remodeling and decor was a no brainer but my wife and I talked at length about whether or not we wanted to spend the money on a convertible crib. For those that don’t know convertible cribs are designed to “grow” with your child. They are first set up as a crib which has a height adjusting mattress. This allows the mattress to be lowered as the child grows. For example when the bed is used for a new born the baby is not going to be standing or climbing so the mattress is set high. This lets you lift out the baby without having to bend over the rail. Then as the baby grows you lower the mattress, typically there are a total of three positions. The lowest position is considered the toddler bed and is high enough to keep most, keyword being most, young toddlers from climbing out of the bed. Then once you feel it’s time you can remove the front rail of the bed and replace it with another rail that comes with the crib when purchased. This new rail converts the toddler bed/crib into a day bed. Many people seem to skip this step of the conversion but others love this feature. Then there’s the big day when your child get his or her own big bed which in most cases is a full size bed. This part works by using the front and back of the crib as the head and foot board connected by standard bed rails or the rails that come with the crib when purchased.
Pros and Cons of Cribs That Convert to Beds
In the end my wife and I felt that the convertible crib just made more since and was the right choice for us even though the cost with the whole bedroom suit was close to $2,000. We crossed our fingers and hoped that the bed was everything we thought it would be.
Fast forward four years, two kids and two convertible cribs later and I am happy to say that we are very pleased with our decision. Here are a few of the things we like the most; the sturdy build of the crib. It could easily support the weight of an adult. Also when the mattress was in the highest position it was easy to use the crib as a changing station. And the money we saved over the long haul by not having to buy new beds for every stage of childhood.
Some of the negative aspects include, the up front cost, the fact that you have to store many of the parts for future use. The fact that you will still need to buy a mattress once you convert the crib to a full bed and maybe even mattress rails. One other thing that we failed to do with both the cribs we have bought was to buy a crib rail protector. So now the foot boards on both our beds have bite marks were the boys have chewed on them. This drives my wife crazy but I think it’s cute and gives their beds some character.
So there you go my honest opinion on whether cribs that convert to beds are worth the money. I do have one tip for those that plan to buy a convertible crib and that is to buy the best one you can afford. Like most things in life you get what you pay for and this is no different. The more expensive models just seem to be sturdier when set up as a standard bed.
I hope this information has been helpful and feel free to leave any questions you might have below and I will do my best to answer them.