If your vehicle's seats have seen some hard miles, you may want to consider learning how to upholster car seats. Doing your own automotive upholstery work can save you a lot of money and add to the value of your car.
Learn How to Upholster Car Seats
When it comes to auto repair and maintenance, many people feel comfortable changing their own oil or replacing a headlight. Some car enthusiasts will even go to great lengths to customize their own cars. However, even confident amateur mechanics sometimes balk at the idea of upholstering car seats.
If you have some skills with the sewing machine, you can probably do some form of car seat upholstery. There's no reason to be intimidated by this project, and there's definitely no reason to drive around for years with ripped-up upholstery.
Before you begin upholstering your car seats, be sure to research tips and tricks from professionals. The Internet has some excellent tutorials on this subject, and you may benefit from watching videos of other people re-covering their car seats.
The basic process for replacing your car upholstery is as follows:
- Unbolt the seats, and remove them from the car.
- Remove the old car upholstery, and use it as a pattern to cut out new upholstery pieces.
- Remove and replace any worn seat padding.
- Sew the new upholstery together, and attach it to the seat.
- Re-install the seat.
Best Car Upholstery Articles and Tutorials
Since upholstering a car seat can be a complicated project, it's a good idea to do as much research as possible. Here are some of the best Internet tutorials and articles to help you get started:
- How to Reupholster Auto Seats from Monkey Wrench: This is a first-hand account of adventures in automotive upholstery.
- Video: How Long Does it Take to Reupholster a Seat? on YouTube: This short video shows someone reupholstering a bench seat, and it's set to cheery techno music.
- Auto Upholstery Instructions from Upholstery.com: This helpful article includes videos and several photos of each step in the upholstery process.
- How to Reupholster Bucket Seats from Mustang & Fords Magazine: This article includes step-by-step instructions with photographs.
Alternative to Reupholstering a Seat
Think this project sounds overwhelming? Instead of doing a full upholstery job on your car seats, you could invest in car seat covers, which are like slipcovers for your vehicle's seats. Available from most automotive accessory stores, seat covers are an affordable and easy way to upgrade the look of your car.
As you learn how to upholster car seats, keep the following helpful tips in mind:
- Choose a fabric that is durable and easy to work with. Silky fabrics can be difficult to control when you're using a sewing machine. You'll have better luck with velvet or heavyweight corduroy.
- Do you homework. Consider buying a book on the topic of upholstery for cars, and make use of Internet tutorials.
- Don't forget about safety. Be sure that you re-install the seat properly and that your upholstery work doesn't interfere with the functioning of seat belts.
- Have fun! You can express your personal style with this project.