Duct Tape to patch a vinyl seat?


#1

Anybody have a good reason not to do this? The f150 I bought used has a vinyl bench that is a bit torn up on the driver side. It seems to be getting progressively worse so I was going to duct tape it up just to prevent from further ripping. Its missing enough vinyl that I couldnt really stitch it up, but its small enough that I dont care to put a seat cover on. I was going to do it but figured Id check in case someone out there is going to say WAIT!!! DONT DO THAT!!!


#2

OK I will say it - DON’T DO IT All you will have is tape residue on your clothes after the sun breaks down the duct tape. Just go to an auto parts place and get what we called air cushions to set on. You could use a large iron on denim patch to keep the split from getting worse.


#3

Instant mess. Try something else. Just google ‘car seat repair’, lots of ideas, like this:
http://www.mobiloil.com/USA-English/MotorOil/Car_Care/DIY/Fixing_Leather_or_Vinyl_Car_Seats.aspx


#4

The tape edges will curl up and you’ll get sticky stuff all over your pants. My wife bought a car and taped the seat. I drove it. We quickly bought a cover.


#5

Well dang! I bought some duct tape and everything. A friend had told me basically everything you guys are reinforcing so I suppose I’ll have to go a different route. I like the vinyl otherwise. My previous used car of 10 years went through about 3 or 4 different seat covers over the years. I’d almost rather live with the foam coming through then a slidey, sun blanched seat cover.


#6

We have a few vehicles at work with exposed foam from worn out seats, better than duct tape for sure!


#7

Isn’t there special “vinyl tape” that you stick on, and it “melts” into the existing vinyl with heat?


#8

Allegedly. I’ve seen it advertised, but never tried it. Supposedly you can also mold a surface texture into it similar to your seat’s when you melt it in.

I keep my vehicles forever and have faced the worn-out seat problem. The best solution IMHO is a cover.


#9

I agree with a temporary cover, but I think you should price a new bench seat cover from Ford or maybe an aftermarket replacement.


#10

They get a bundle for replacement covers.

Years ago my kids left a large box of crayons on the seat of our minivan in the summer. You guessed it, I ended up with a 6" diameter multicolored wax spot on the seat under a box of empty crayon tubes. I priced a replacement cover and was stunned at the price.

In the mire recent past, I priced a replacement cover for my old pickup… again I was stunned at the price. Hog rings I can do no problem… but not those prices!


#11

Why not have the seats reupholstered?

Is that not in the budget at this time?


#12

Just not worth the $ for me right now


#13

Putting in a new upholstery panel on a seat is called “inserting”. I had this done at an automotive upholstery and trim shop and the price was quite reasonable.
You might talk to the used car manager a car dealer. These managers often know about shops that do good work at a reasonable price as the used car managers are in charge of preparing the used cars for resale. The used car managers I have met have been quite personable.


#14

Good suggestion.

If you can sew, you could also remove the seatcover, use it as a template, buy material, and cut and sew in your own new seat upholstery. You’d need an upholstery “hog ring kit”, an exploded view drawing of the seat cover installation (available from the dealer’s parts window), and a high tolerance for pain, but it ain’t rocket science. I’d do it if it were mine, but, then, I ain’t exactly normal.


#15

Getting it fixed by an upholstery repair shop is the best choice. It might not be as expensive as you think provided you are willing to accept a what’s just a cosmetic glitch. If you decide to use duct tape anyway, be aware there’s different versions. Some are sturdier and hold up to the sun much better than others. The kind my local hardware store stocks I use in situations that need to hold up to strong sun and high heat for a long time has a black color. I’ve never had a problem with that kind unraveling, edge curling, or degrading. Even when it sits all day long in direct sun. But I haven’t ever tried it in an application where you have to sit on it, so I don’t know if the glue from the edge would be a problem.


#16

If you can’t pay for having an upholstery shop sew in a new panel to match what you have, this is what I have done.

There is special glue made just for vinyl. Using disposable rubber gloves, I apply some to the inside of the rip, covering about an inch on each side of the hole. Then I put the same glue on a matching (or nearly matching) piece of vinyl. Then I spread the rip apart and slip the patch in behind the torn material. The stuffing will keep the patch snug against the outer material. I tape the slit closed with masking tape, and let it sit overnight before sitting on it. Usually it looks pretty good, with only what looks like a crack in the good upholstery.


#17

I had a couple leather inserts sewn in my bucket seat. Can’t remember now if it was one bucket or two and just the seat or the seat and back. At any rate it cost me about $250 and really was a nice job and factory match. Might want to look around Atrim.com for ideas, but if you take the seat out, upholstery work can be pretty reasonable from the right shop. Or send it down to tiajuanna for a $100 upholstery job. Otherwise just some covers from Walmart for a while.