Setting up a Graco Pack 'n Play can feel like you're trying to crack the DaVinci code at times. Sometimes it doesn't fold up as it should because the bars aren't completely folded, and other times you can't even get the bars down to try folding it up.
Setting up and taking down a Graco Pack 'n Play is a very delicate process that must be done in a very specific way that makes it possible for you to set it up and take it down in a matter of minutes. Check out the video at the bottom of this article for reference.
How Do I Set Up a Graco Pack 'n Play?
- Remove the Graco Pack 'n Play from its carrying case 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.
- Grab 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.
- Grab 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.
- Push the piece connected to the red pull tab down toward the floor. You may have to stop intermittently and adjust the pack and play so you can push the piece connected to the pull tab down further. Continue pushing the piece connected to the red pull tab down until it's even with the bottom of the Graco Pack 'n Play.
- Place the pad that covers the bottom in the pack and 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 and play.
- Slide the Velcro tabs through the slots and then fasten them to the fasteners on the bottom of the Pack 'n Play.
How Do I Take Down a Graco Pack 'n Play?
- Unhook the Velcro tab on the underside of two corners of the Pack 'n Play. After you find one of the Velcro tabs, the other one will be in the diagonal corner. Repeat this process for that tab as well.
- Position yourself over the top of the Graco Pack 'n Play. The pad along the bottom of the pack and play is broken up into four vertical sections. Lift one of the outer pads, pulling the Velcro tab through the slit in the bottom of the pack and play. Repeat this process for the pad on the opposite side.
- Lift and remove the pad from along the bottom of the Graco Pack 'n Play. In the center of the bottom of the pack and play will be a red pull tab.
- Pull the red pull tab up as far as you can until the bars at the top of the pack and play fall down around the frame for the bottom of the pack and play that's pulled up beneath the red pull tab. Locate the buttons on the outside center of all the bars.
- Press the two buttons on the outside of the two long sides and then push the center of each side down as far as you can. The bars will break up into a centerpiece and two more pieces on either side of the bar.
- Re-position the Graco Pack 'n Play so you can reach the two outer buttons on the short bars. Be careful that the pieces of the bars on the long sides don't click back into place. If any of those bars click back into place, you'll need to pop the pack and play back up without the pad and start again.
- Press the two buttons on the outside of the two short sides and then push the center of each side down as far as you can. The bars will break up into a centerpiece and two more pieces on either side of the bar.
- Pull all of the sides in together and bunch the pack and play up. The Graco Pack 'n Play should fit snugly in the carrying case that came with it.
Rate Your Graco Pack 'n Play
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2012 Max Dalton
Debbie on November 19, 2019:
How do I fold the pack and play that has the changing table?
Kathy Lundstrom on August 06, 2018:
I received an older 296LJ pack and play There are not any buttons on the outside but show a triangle tab. When I press it nothing happens so I don't know how to take down the pack and play.
RTalloni on April 07, 2018:
Okay, maybe I'll try it again one day. All I can say about my first time is VIVA MY DAUGHTER-IN-LAW! :)
Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on February 05, 2018:
Lauren Flauding from Sahuarita, AZ on January 26, 2018:
This is golden! There have been more than a few instances when a pack and play has left me totally bewildered and more than a bit frustrated. These instructions are so thorough, they’re fail proof!
Hande on January 09, 2015:
Clear, infeamrtivo, simple. Could I send you some e-hugs?
Manuel on January 09, 2015:
At last! Something clear I can unsddrtane. Thanks!
tam on December 02, 2012:
Thank...I'm the mother and not use to setting up and taking stuff down.
Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on February 28, 2012:
That's no joke, lol. The first couple of times I tried setting this thing up wound up in disaster because no matter what I did, the side rails wouldn't lock out. I think I need to add a note somewhere in this article stressing the importance of getting that center circle piece as high as possible and then working around that.
And, yes, the cat is having a blast. I edited out the parts where I had to lift her out of the pack and play before most of these shots, and she's always lurking in the background.
RTalloni on February 27, 2012:
I've seen these pack and plays make well educated men look and feel like dolts. You made it look easy enough. Love the cat's attitude. :)