Graco Pack ‘n Play Playard Review

If there was ever a baby product I couldn’t live without in baby gear it would have be my Graco Pack ‘n Play Playard. Playards are a must-have for any new parent even if you don’t travel often. They are convenient for nap time especially when newborns spend a lot of their day sleeping. Here is my take on this Pack N’ Play system if you are looking for play yard reviews to base a buying decision on.

Graco Pack N' Play Play Yard Review

There were several items I received with our first child that I really liked, but I don’t think I favored any other baby gear item quite like my pack n’ play. Play yards come in several different varieties with many different features so choosing one that suits your needs all depends on what you intend to use it for. For instance, if you’re looking for one that is practical and inexpensive you would probably look into just a basic play pen. If you’re wanting a separate one to keep at grandma’s house for playing and sleep overs, one that comes with a bassinet is more ideal (just be sure it does, in fact, come with a bassinet before you purchase it. My mother initially purchased one from Walmart and it had a small picture on the box of a design that had the bassinet which could easily be misleading. When she took it out to set it up she realized that the particular model she had did NOT come with it and had to purchased separately.) Some play pens have a smaller, compact design for close living spaces or easier transporting. The reason I point these out is because there is an individual Pack N’ Play for each of these features.

I love multi-functioning baby products especially ones that grow with your child so the one we have is a 3-in-1 system with a newborn changer/napper, bassinet, and play pen. Each feature of the play pen serves for multiple stages of infant development.

Here are a few pros and cons about the Pack N’ Play:

Pros
• Convenient for travel or home
• Grows with child up into toddlerhood
• Durable and great value
Cons
• The changer, though convenient, is not an ideal height
• Mattress pad isn’t very thick and not great quality for sleeping through the night.

 

My Favorite Features About the Graco Pack ‘n Play Playard

changer Graco Pack N' Play Play YardThe changer on this play yard can be used for infants that are less than 25 pounds. I used the changer quite often because it was convenient just to change my babies in the living room where we were at most of the time. I will say that it was a bit uncomfortable on the back as you have to bend over as opposed to the changing table. It also served as the perfect place to give them sponge baths because it was soft, waterproof, and I had all my diapering essentials at hand in the neat little organizer on the side (we have an older model that had 3 pockets). The wheels on it made it easy for me to bring it from the living room to the kitchen so I could put it near the sink where I had quick access to water.

bassinet Pack N' Play Play Yard ReviewThe bassinet served its purpose for as long as possible for daytime naps. This was very useful so I could watch my baby while sleeping having not had a video baby monitor. The mattress pad, however is a little on the thin side so I used a baby quilt to provide a little extra padding. The toy bar also made it an entertaining place tor them to play while lying down before they were old enough to roll over or push up on their hands and needs. The way our bassinet would sit in the play pen allowed it to sway a little from side-to-side when pushed so I used this as somewhat of a rocking method to help lull my kids to sleep in it.

Portability of the Pack N’ Play

We used ours a few times for traveling with our first child (by the time I had my second one I had purchased a Fisher Price Rock N’ Play sleeper which was much easier to carry than the play yard.) The play yard served as a portable crib to put the kids to sleep in when we stayed somewhere overnight while they were too little to sleep in a bed of their own. It conveniently folds up and has a carrying case that holds the play yard and all the accessories to make it easy for transporting.  I also loved the carrying case for the fact that it made it easier to store after our daughter outgrew it until we needed it again for our son. It didn’t take up much space and could easily be stored up in the closet or underneath the bed.

We have also used it outdoors on a couple of occasions where we were outside and wanted to let them have a safe, clean place to play rather than let them crawl on the hard, dirty patio. The mesh sides gives it optimal breathability and allows air or a cool gentle breeze to pass through it.

Here’s what other moms who owned this play yard had to say about it:

”We added this Pack N’ Play to our baby registry. The directions were fairly simple with minimal assembly required. My son sleeps in it almost every day and I highly recommend it.”
”This makes life with a baby convenient, not going from one place to another.”
”This product is heavy as hell.”
”It takes some time to break down and put together the play yard.”

These play yard reviews for the Pack N’ Play were paraphrased for your convenience. If you would like to read the full descriptions along with other buyer’s reviews, you can check them out here.

I must commend Graco on the durability of their Pack N’ Play systems. After having two kids in them the play yard is still holding up very well with no obvious signs of wear. This is after enduring a few trips, a move, and being outdoors (although we never left it out overnight or in bad weather). It still has no tears, rips, or dings in it and aside from a few little smudges incurred from stains it looks almost the same as it did the day we took it out of the box.

Overall, I really loved this play yard. Personally I never experienced any issues with it other than the fact that the changer is a little low for changing diapers. Upon reading some of the other play yard reviews I will note that it would be nice if the mattress pad had a removable cover to throw in the washer. I used a quilt in ours for the extra padding so this wasn’t really an issue for me as I could just toss the quilt in the wash when it was dirty. They also make fitted sheets specifically for play yard mattresses which you can buy to help minimize stains and because they’re made for the play pen, they stay in place.  Even so, if your baby has a massive blow out or spits up you still need to clean the mattress pad. I found that the material was very easy to wipe clean if it becomes wet or dirty so, in all I don’t really find this an issue.

As always my goal is to provide you accurate information about how well a baby product holds up based on my experiences. Graco’s Pack N’ Play line are among one of the top rated play yard brands, which comes as no surprise to me. This particular Pack N’ Play comes in just under $100 and has an average rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars and I can easily see why. If you are looking for one that offers great functionality, value, and convenience I would strongly recommend this play yard.

Click the image below to see more detail of this product on Amazon.com
graco's pack n play

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