How To Set Up A Graco Pack’n Play: A Guide

Setting up a Graco Pack N Play for your kids doesn’t have to be a complicated or stressful matter. The trick is it must be done in a specific way in order for it to be successfully erected and then taken down. This article shows you how.

As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. The links below may be affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy for more information. 

When Should You Set Up A Graco Pack ‘n Play?

Once successfully erected, the Graco Pack ‘n Play can be set up and ready for use for the day your new-born baby comes home from the hospital, and it is safe for your baby to sleep inside the Pack ‘n Play immediately, though it is recommended that infants are also placed inside a bassinet, which many Pack ‘n Plays come with as an attachment option.

How Do I Set Up a Graco Pack ‘n Play?

If you’ve recently purchased a Pack ‘n Play for when you baby is born and home from the hospital and would like to set it up in time, here’s how:

  1. Remove the Graco Pack ‘n Play from its packaging and place the side with two legs and two wheels on the floor. Ensure that the piece connected to the red pull tab is pulled up as high as it can be.
  2. Pick up the center of the long bars and then pull up until all the parts of each bar click and lock into place. You shouldn’t be able to move any of the pieces on the long bars.
  3. Hold the center of the short bars and then pull up until all the parts of each bar click and lock into place. You shouldn’t be able to move any of the pieces on the short bars.
  4. Press the part connected to the red pull tab down toward the floor. You may have to stop occasionally and adjust the pack and play so you can push the piece connected to the pull tab down further. Continue pressing the piece connected to the red pull tab down until it’s even with the bottom of the Pack ‘n Play.
  5. Rest the pad that covers the bottom in the Pack ‘n Play. Ensure that the corners of the pad with the Velcro tabs in the corners are in the same corners as the slots on the base of the Pack ‘n Play.
  6. Slip the Velcro tabs through the slots and then fasten them to the fasteners on the bottom of the Pack ‘n Play.
  7. Detach the Velcro tab from the two lower corners of the Graco Pack ‘n Play.

Why Won’t My Pack ‘n Play Fold Up?

Sometimes a Graco Pack ‘n Play won’t fully fold up, which can be frustrating for parents trying to neatly pack it away.

When this happens it is likely that the Pack ‘n Play’s rails are partially locked. If a rail that isn’t completely collapsed, push the center button again to release the lock.

Storing the Pack ‘n Play

Once the item is fully collapsed, it is important to store it correctly to ensure it won’t be damaged; particularly if you’re transiting it elsewhere. If you still have the original packaging, bag, and the manual, this will help.

Here’s how to store a Pack ‘n Play properly:

  • Place the Pack ‘n Play and any accessories, such as the bassinet, on the mattress. After you collapse the item, set that on the mattress too. Bundle up any accessories that you’d like to pack with it, such as your mattress sheet, bassinet base and support tubes, and toy bar, next to the folded Pack ‘n Play on top of the mattress. Make sure the mattress is facing upwards when you place these items on top of it.
  • Wrap the Pack ‘n Play and any accessories within the up-facing mattress and then fold the mattress pad at each of the 4 creases so that it completely surrounds the Pack ‘n Play and its contents. The bottom of the mattress should be facing out. Take care to tuck in any accessories so that they fit neatly inside the bundle and don’t fall out.
  • Push the Velcro straps through the loops to secure the mattress and then grab one of the straps along the edge of the mattress bottom and find the matching loop on the opposite edge. Wind the strap through the loop, pull it tight, and fold it back on itself to fasten it. Repeat this process with the other strap.
  • Place the bundled Pack ‘n Play into its bag (if you still have it) with the handle up. After you secure the Pack ‘n Play inside its mattress, turn it so that the handle on the outside of the mattress is facing up. Take the travel bag and position it so you can line up the handle with the slot in the top of the bag. Pull the bag over the Pack ‘n Play and zip it shut with the handle sticking out. To guide the Pack ‘n Play into the bag without difficulty, make sure you align the corners of the bag with the corners of the mattress.
  • Store in a cool, dry, safe place.

How Do I Lock a Graco Pack ‘n Play?

This is a part of the Pack ‘n Play that many parents struggle with – but it’s actually really easy once you know how! To lock a Graco Pack ‘n Play, simply push down on both of the locking tabs and turn the key clockwise.

If you’re still having issues, consult the manual or phone the manufacturer.

When Should My Baby Stop Sleeping Inside The Graco Pack ‘n Play?

The general rule of thumb is that babies should no longer sleep inside their Pack ‘n Play when they reach around 30 pounds in weight and 35 inches in height, which is usually around two to three years of age.

While babies grow at different rates, and their weights may vary, it is important to ensure your baby isn’t too tall that he/she can climb out of the Pack ‘N Play, or has trouble comfortably stretching out when lying down.

If your child shows regular distress in the Pack ‘n Play, this could mean it’s time to look into other sleeping arrangements, regardless of age, height or weight.

Benefits of a Graco Pack ‘n Play 

A Graco Pack ‘n Play can be a great sleeping arrangement for your baby. Here are just some of the benefits of using one:

  • They are great for napping; particularly if it helps separating them from an older sibling or a twin.
  • They can learn to enjoy independent play-time in a safe and familiar environment.
  • They are great for trips to the beach or park.
  • Great for when Mom needs a time-out!

Conclusion

sleep

A Graco Pack ‘n Play can be a great addition for parents of an infant. Once the hassle of setting it up correctly has been overcome, your baby can enjoy their Pack ‘n Play as a sleeping environment, as well as a safe and secure little play area.

This goes for days at home or trips out, such as to the park or the beach.

Packing up your Pack ‘n Play plus its accessories needs to be done correctly, and it is wise that when you purchase this item you hold on to the manual, packaging and the bag the Pack ‘n Play comes in – all of which will make life much easier!

Sometimes the rails of a Pack ‘n Play will “lock”, making it hard to collapse the item. Simply push down on both of the locking tabs and turn the key clockwise.

Babies should only enjoy their Pack ‘n Play until they are around 35 inches tall and around 30 pounds in weight. If exceeded, it may be unsafe and uncomfortable for them to continue using the item.

If your Graco Pack ‘n Play isn’t erected correctly or you’re having issues doing so, always consult the manufacturer before placing your baby inside. Always make sure the Pack ‘n Play is safe before placing an infant inside.

Sharing is caring!