Ouch, my back!

How can I solve the back pain problem I suffer whenever I get behind the wheel of my newly purchased 1997 Honda Odyssey? Is it the driving position? The steering position? Help!

You can try some seat cushions, but I had the same problem with a brand new '05 Corolla and had to trade it in for something else after only two months. I tried everything. I lost $2500, but it was worth every penny. I mentally wrote it off as a medical expense.

Try multiple tiny changes. ie; Seat back angle, back a tad and seat forward a bit ; seat back angle up a bit and seat backward a bit ; seat hight adjust ; and on some the seat bottom angle is adjustable too. Are there lumbar or thigh pads too ? “If at first you don’t succeed…try,try, again”

Who knows? You did not tell us what part of your back hurts or how long you drive before it hurts. Give us some useful information and maybe we can help.

Thanks for responding. My back starts hurting maybe five minutes after I start driving. It’s my lower back and sacrum that become quite painful. There is no seat hight adjustment only a seat back angle adjust. The seat is high so it’s more like sitting in a chair than being in a low slung position with your legs jutting forward.

How is your height relative to the gas pedal. Maybe you should have the seat more fwd and reduce pressure on your back. Agree with above, it is trial and error.

Try out using a lumbar support pillow available at many Chiropractor’s offices.

My MIL has lower back pain. She finds that using a roll pillow behind her bottom works. Not that she does not sit on it. The pillow is between her very low back and the seat back.

I have a friend that had the same problem. She is short and I believe the car was a Hnonda. She had an upholstery shop open up the seat and put in more padding where she needed it. I had a 1993 Oldsmobile 88 in which I could never drive more than 50 miles without being uncomfortable. This car had a power seat and was a great car except I couldn’t drive it on long trips. I’ve learned to try on cars for fit before I make a purchase.

I used to get company cars every 2 to 3 years. A month after getting a new '89 Pontiac midsized Grand something I was crawling up the stairs on my hands and knees. It took a while to find an orthopedic cushion that worked well enough to get me through the next 2 years until the next car which was comfortable without the cushion.

Some car seats just don’t fit well with individual drivers. This is the case with you and the seat in your Odyssey. You need some more support in your lower back and it will take trial and error experimenting before you find a comfortable solution. If you have the option consider selling the car. You and it are destined to not be happy together.

I love Volvo seats because you can ride in one all day with no problems. Yet, I’ve owned Volvo’s and they are just too expensive to repair once they are off warranty. So, don’t get a Volvo. Perhaps you can buy a Volvo seat off a junker and get it installed in the Honda?

Thanks, everyone. I’m going to try to find a chiropractor with ideas. The seat swapping idea is tempting too. This is going to take some time. I don’t want to have to give up this beautiful car.

Having been through this whole process myself, let me suggest that the chiropractor will only be trying to compensate for the real cause, a car with seat and ride that just doesn’t work for you. The real cause needs to be eliminated.

Unfortunately, you need to find something confortable for you and trade this one. I spent many dollars and many days trying to find a solution, and the only one was a different vehicle. I had to put my health first. And I’m very glad I did so.

That is one sad story, but i am hopeful the lumbar support thingy will work. What did you end up buying?

I ended up with a Scion tC. It was the only thing in my price range in which I could lay back and comfortably drive for distances, and the good tracking and slightly firmer ride meant that the vehicle doesn’t float around under me as some others I test drove did.

With my condition, degenerative disc disease, it takes me a moment to get in and out due to the low seat, but it’s well worth it. Once in I can drive all day (and have many times) without pain.

I don’t think of it as a sad story, I just accept it as the way things are. The Corolla mistake was simply a very expensive mistake from which I learned the importance of taking repeated loooooooooong test drives. And I learned that from now on driving comfort has to take precedence over every other criterion, at least for me.

Don’t try seat swapping, they are not interchangeable between brands, or even between models. Adding padding would be the cheapest fix (after trying out different positions, of course).