If your Ford had a Matthew McConaughey, it would be a Lincoln

What does it really take to make worn (car) seats supple and sexy again?!

Have you had a tetanus shot recently?

You’ll be fine.

seat cavity. i made 52 cents. now is a good time to vacuum it out.

You will need replacement seat skins, and some amateur tools though. I used these for poking, pulling, and clipping. They also came in handy when snipping several packets of heavy duty zip ties. I did say amateur as zip ties are the lay man’s hog-rings. Zip ties are more forgiving (to me) and have been used for years by others, successfully. Internet Amateur tip: Make sure you buy Heavy Duty(75lbs), UV resistant, Zip ties or left in the sun it may come back undone.

The first step in this feat was to remove the seats. In my car it was bolted to the floor w/ 14mm bolts (4). There was a wire to unclip (in my case headrest speakers are equipped). If you have powered or fancy seats you will have more clips to defeat.

leather is cracked leathery and tough a john wayne

The leather is hard, cracked and torn. parts of the seat foam are worn. Stitching is forlorn. The next step entails removing seat rails and unscrewing all plastic covers you’ve discovered.


Then you pull every hog ring with pliers, or a clip of the snips. Most will be rusted & sharp so keep a safe grip if want to avoid that tetanus trip.


Once all rings are released you’ll have skinned the beasts and be left with somewhat musty heaps. Don’t be gentle, removal takes heart.


I took extra care to repair the cushion where it was mushed in. I split the seams and spelunked for foam chunks trapped inside the old covers. Then sprayed them with a contact adhesive to re-piece them back to seat shaped.




The next major amateur move required me to create retainers from coat hangers. Structurally speaking this was worth tweaking. These ribs I made sit inside fabric channels on the new covers panels. Leave them out and the zips will rip through, you’ll discover. A small screwdriver poking holes as a guide for the ties is wise.


Prepare the ties section by section get them ready for tightening.Zip zip zip the ties...then clip clip clip the excess. Tightening them evenly with pliers can help them lay right and stay tight. Uneven stretching will make them look more wrinkled than fetching.


It is worth a big mention that there was much pulling and stretching. The covers are meant to be tight and to get there you may have a fight.Stay as stubborn as a goat and it’s all she wrote. One piece of web wisdom was to leave them out in sunlight. The cover softens and stretches much better when hot and can save you from cursing the covers tighter spots.


Once the battle of zipping and stuffing is won, reassemble the whole mess by reading reversed. It will go through a bit of of wear-in wherein it relaxes. Once all back intact it is one fine place to place asses.


the dollars and cents:

Seat covers: 250$ on a famous internet sales site where you bid on things.
Zip ties and hangers: 15$ from the local hardware store and my closet
Time: ~4-5 hrs per seat incl. replacing the headrest speakers

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