The Ultimate Guide: How to Sidecar a Crib for Safe Co-Sleeping

The Ultimate Guide: How to Sidecar a Crib for Safe Co-Sleeping

Co-sleeping with your baby is a popular practice among new parents. It offers many benefits, such as making nighttime breastfeeding easier, fostering a strong bond between parent and child, and providing a sense of security for the infant. However, many parents desire more personal space in bed and worry about the safety risks associated with bed-sharing.

A sidecar crib is an excellent solution that allows parents to enjoy the benefits of co-sleeping without sacrificing space and safety. This comprehensive guide will cover everything you need to know about how to sidecar crib, including the benefits, various models, and step-by-step instructions for setting one up. 

What is a Sidecar Crib?

A sidecar crib, or a bedside crib or co-sleeper, is a baby crib designed to attach securely to the side of an adult bed.

One side of the crib is open or removable, allowing the baby to sleep directly beside the parents while still having their own separate sleeping space.

This type of crib is an excellent alternative for parents who want to keep their baby close but need more space in bed.

Benefits of Co-sleeping with a Sidecar Crib

There are numerous benefits to using a sidecar crib for co-sleeping. These include:

  1. Safety: A sidecar crib provides a separate sleeping space for your baby, reducing the risks associated with bed-sharing, such as suffocation, overheating, and entrapment.

  1. Convenience: With your baby sleeping right next to you, nighttime feedings and soothing become much easier. This can lead to better sleep for both parents and babies.

  1. Bonding: Co-sleeping with a sidecar crib fosters a close emotional bond between parent and child.

  1. Easier transition: When it’s time for your baby to move to their room, the transition may be smoother since they are already accustomed to sleeping in a crib.

  1. Versatility: Many sidecar cribs are convertible, allowing you to continue using them as your child grows and transitions to a toddler bed.

Choosing the Right Sidecar Crib

When selecting a sidecar crib, there are several factors to consider:

  1. Safety: Look for a crib that meets or exceeds safety standards and is certified by organizations such as the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA).

  1. Adjustability: Choose a crib with adjustable height settings to ensure it aligns properly with your bed.

  1. Ease of assembly: A crib that is easy to assemble and disassemble is beneficial for parents who want to move it between rooms or take it on trips.

  1. Size: Consider the dimensions of the crib and ensure it fits comfortably in your bedroom.

  1. Additional features: Some sidecar cribs have extra features such as storage compartments, rocking motions, or the ability to convert into a standalone crib or toddler bed.

Preparing to Sidecar Your Crib

Gather the necessary materials and tools before you begin side caring for your crib. You will need the following:

  1. A crib with a removable side or one that can be lowered completely
  2. A screwdriver
  3. Optional: risers or foam to adjust the height of the crib
  4. Optional: straps or cords to secure the crib to your bed
  5. Optional: a firm mattress that fits the crib

Step-by-Step Guide: How to Sidecar a Crib

Follow these steps to set up your sidecar crib:

Step 1: Remove or Lower the Crib Side

First, remove or lower one of the long sides of the crib. This will create an open side that will face your bed. If your crib has a drop-side, lower it completely. If the side is removable, detach it from the crib frame using a screwdriver.

Step 2: Adjust the Crib Height

Next, adjust the height of the crib mattress to align with your bed’s mattress. Many cribs have multiple height settings to accommodate various bed heights.

If your crib does not have adjustable settings, you may need to use risers or foam to raise the crib to the appropriate height.

Step 3: Fill Any Gaps

Ensuring no gaps between the crib mattress and your bed is essential, as they can pose a safety risk for your baby.

Use a firm foam or rolled-up towel to fill any gaps. Ensure the filler is tightly secured to prevent it from shifting.

Step 4: Secure the Crib to Your Bed

To prevent the crib from moving or tipping, secure it to your bed using straps or cords. Attach the straps to the crib and bed frames, ensuring they are tightly fastened.

Alternatively, you can use bungee cords to connect the crib to your bed.

Step 5: Check for Stability and Safety

Once the crib is set up, double-check that it is stable and secure. The crib should not wobble or have gaps between it and your bed.

Ensure no sharp edges or protruding hardware could pose a hazard to your baby.

Popular Sidecar Crib Models

Several sidecar cribs on the market cater to various needs and preferences. Some popular models include:

  1. HALO Bassinest Swivel Sleeper: This sidecar crib is ideal for high beds and offers a swivel feature for easy access to your baby.

  1. Kidsclub Baby Bedside Sleeper: This convertible sidecar crib offers six height adjustments and a comfortable, safe sleeping environment for your baby.

  1. Arm’s Reach Concepts Bassinet Mini Ezee 2-in-1 Co-sleeper: This versatile sidecar crib features adjustable height settings, mesh sides for breathability, and a portable design.

  1. Chicco Next2Me Co-sleeper: This crib offers 11 height adjustments, breathable mesh walls, and a convenient tilting feature for added comfort.


A sidecar crib is an excellent solution for parents who want to enjoy the benefits of co-sleeping while maintaining their personal space and ensuring their baby’s safety.

A sidecar crib can provide your baby with a comfortable and secure sleeping environment with the proper setup.

By following our comprehensive guide on how to sidecar crib, you can make an informed decision and create a safe and nurturing sleep space for your little one.


Is it Safe to Sidecar a Crib?

Sidecar cribs are considered a safe alternative to bed-sharing, as they provide a separate sleeping space for your baby, reducing the risk of accidents. To ensure the safety of sidecar cribs, it’s essential to follow proper safety precautions and guidelines, as outlined in this guide.

Can All Baby Cribs Be Sidecarred?

Not all baby cribs can be sidecarred, as some may not have removable sides or be adjustable in height. Before attempting to sidecar a crib, ensure that it is suitable for this purpose by reviewing the manufacturer’s guidelines and specifications.

How to Choose a Sidecar Crib?

When choosing a sidecar crib, consider factors such as its compatibility with your bed, adjustability, safety features, and additional benefits, such as storage compartments and convertibility.

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