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Cheryl Botsolas loves holding her newborn daughter Laurie. But finding just the right stroller proved a tough task.
"There are so many different options for all these strollers. I don't know how people choose," said Botsolas.
Consumer Reports testers evaluated dozens of strollers. Most are traditional or lightweight ones, but a few are travel systems, including one that has a car seat that lifts off and a base that stays in your car.
Prices ranged from $50 to a whopping $600 for one from Peg Perego.
"The good news is, especially in this economy, is that you don't have to spend the big bucks to get your baby a good set of wheels," said Sandra Gordon of Consumer Reports.
The strollers were put through a number of tests, including one that assesses how easy the strollers are to maneuver. Panelists took them along blacktop, across grass, uphill and downhill to mimic what you might encounter day-to-day.
And because you'll be opening and closing the stroller all day long, panelists looked at how easy that is to do.
"It turns out in other tests there was a potential safety risk with the Baby Jogger City Mini. The harness buckle released when we applied relatively little force to the straps, which means that a child could wriggle out and even potentially fall out of the stroller," said Gordon.
Consumer Reports did find some good choices. The Graco Stylus Travel System Stroller rated excellent and is a best buy at $245. Another best buy is the traditional Graco V-4 Stroller, which rated very good and costs $115.
If you own a Baby Jogger City Mini Stroller, Consumer Reports says check the manufacturing date on the box or on the stroller leg. If it's on or before February 7, 2009, you should contact the company at (800) 241-1848 to get a free buckle replacement.
Strollers manufactured after February 7 already have a different buckle that has passed Consumer Reports' safety tests.