Leather Car Seat Repair: How To Fix And Prevent Tears And Cracks
Many drivers choose vehicles with leather seats for their luxurious look and feel. Taking care of the seats is important for keeping the vehicle’s interior looking nice. This is especially important for drivers who plan to trade in or sell their car later on. If the seats are cared for properly, they will not crack or tear easily.
How To Prevent Tears And Cracks In Leather Seats
Can leather cracks be prevented? Can leather tears be prevented? Both types of damages are mostly preventable. It is much less expensive to maintain the seats than it is to fix the leather damage. These tips cover both cosmetic maintenance and helpful advice for what to avoid.
1. Avoid the sun. Use a sun shield on the windshield if the vehicle must sit in the sun. If the side windows and back windshield are not tinted to minimize the sun’s intensity, use window screens or shields after parking the vehicle on sunny days. If the leather car interior is exposed to direct sunlight for extended periods of time, it can crack and the color will fade.
2. Avoid bulky and sharp objects. The easiest way to prevent tears is to be mindful of what goes on the seats. Do not put tools, pet carriers or sharp objects directly on the seats. That also includes sharp or pointed objects in your pockets such as keys. Always put bulky objects in the trunk if possible. When putting any other objects on the seats, place a padded protective blanket over the seat first.
3. Condition and clean seats regularly. It is important to maintain clean seats and condition the leather regularly. Be sure to vacuum the seats first. Always clean seats with a gentle cleaner that is designed for leather interior. Finish the job with a conditioner that is made for leather. The conditioner will help the clean seats keep their pliability and will prevent cracks and signs of wear.
How To Fix Tears And Cracks In Leather Seats
Can leather cracks be fixed? Can leather tears be repaired? The answer is yes. Guests, pets or children may tear the seats at some point. When a tear or crack happens, it is important to repair it quickly to protect the inner part of the seat. Use these tips for proper leather car seat repair.
Car Leather Repair – What You Will Need:
- Warm water
- Mild dish soap
- Cleaning cloth
- Microfiber cloth
- Denatured alcohol
- Mild sandpaper
- Auto leather repair kit
If the leather is cracked, it can be fixed with a car leather repair or leather patch kit. This type of kit is inexpensive. Make sure it includes a leather dye that matches the color of the leather car interior. Start by cleaning the seat with warm water that is mixed with mild dish soap. Rinse out the cleaning cloth as necessary. After rinsing the rag well, use it to rub denatured alcohol on the cracked areas. Wipe the areas dry with a microfiber cloth.
When the leather is dry, gently sand the cracked areas away with the sandpaper. Use the microfiber cloth to wipe the seats dry again. Next, open the auto leather repair kit. Read the instructions carefully to understand how to use the contents of the package. Open the liquid leather sealant product. Use it to smooth out the cracks according to the instructions. Apply the leather dye carefully to the affected areas until it matches the rest of the seat. Let the seats dry completely before using them again. Unless the vehicle is in a clean and closed garage, it is best to keep the windows rolled up while the seats are drying to avoid debris entering the car.
Fixing Leather Car Interior Tears
What You Will Need
- Matching leather thread
- Leather needle
- Sharp scissors
- A strip of matching leather
- Leather putty
- Matching leather dye
Aside from replacing the seats, there is no way to repair gashes or tears in the leather that make it look flawless. However, there are two ways to repair tears that will protect the part of the seat beneath the leather and minimize the unattractiveness of a large tear. The torn edges can be stitched together or a piece of leather can be placed over or below them and attached to the torn edges.
To repair the tear by stitching the torn edges together, start by cutting away any threads that are loose with scissors. Thread the needle and put it on the underside of one torn leather edge. Loop it over the other side and pull the needle back through the thread loop to create a strong knot. Push the needle with a thimble. Carefully stitch the leather in even and small stitches to minimize the appearance of the thread. After finishing, tie the knot off on the underside of the leather.
For the leather strip insert option, cut away any loose threads on the torn edges first. Place the leather strip under or over the tear. It is best to place it under the seat’s leather. Use the stitching method above to create and finish knots. Stitch carefully using small stitches for an even look. It is also possible to use liquid leather adhesive instead of a needle and thread. If there are gaps after finishing, fill them in with leather putty. Paint the leather with dye if necessary to make it match the seats.
To use adhesive as an alternative, place the leather pieces underneath the tears and position them properly. Brush the liquid adhesive around the edges of the tears and press them into the leather strip. Smooth out any rough surfaces with sandpaper, wipe the residue away with a wet cloth and dry the seat with a microfiber cloth. If there are gaps, fill them in with leather putty. Apply leather dye to the affected areas if necessary.
Fixing Leather Car Interior Holes
Another important topic of leather car seat repair is fixing holes in the leather. These can happen from punctures or cigarette burns. This type of leather car seat repair is much simpler than fixing cracks or tears. Use either a small piece of leather as a patch for bigger holes or liquid leather for very small holes. For the patch method of leather car seat repair, find a piece of leather that matches the seat. Cut a small piece to fit over the hole. Use leather adhesive to attach it. Let it dry for several hours before sitting on it or placing any items on the seat.
For the liquid auto leather repair method, buy a liquid leather product. Look for matching leather dye to use afterward. Follow the instructions to apply the product. Wait for it to dry before applying the auto leather dye. Clean seats thoroughly and apply conditioner when finished.
Can leather damage be fixed? It absolutely is possible to fix leather but there are some limitations. When the tears and damages are too severe for DIY methods, it is time to look for professional leather car seat repair or for a replacement seat.