How To Repair Heated Seats

car interior

Source | Unsplash

Save on a heated seat repair cost by tackling the job yourself first.

While you impatiently wait for the engine to warm up and heat to blow from the vents, you can take comfort in the nearly instantaneous warmth spreading across your back and bottom with the touch of a button for the vehicle's seat heaters. If, however, that seat heater is broken, now's the time to consider tackling a heated seat repair yourself, or begin researching how much does it cost to fix heated seats at a commercial garage.

A heated seat repair cost can vary widely depending on the vehicle and exactly what's wrong, but in general, it's not inexpensive, primarily because of the time required to diagnose and repair the problem, which almost always involves removing the seat from the vehicle.

Follow the steps below and try some relatively quick fixes first to see if they solve the problem and help minimize your heated seat repair cost and time invested. If not, then it's probably time for a full-on seat heater replacement, as opposed to attempting a heated seat repair.

Vehicle System
Appearance, Body, & Towing
Skill Level

This is a good project for new DIYers

Time to Complete
1-2 hours
    Checking for culprits
  1. Consult your owner's manual to determine the location of the fuse box and check for and replace any blown fuses. These could be a quick fix for a heated seat repair.

  2. Examine the plug connecting the seat to the wiring to ensure it is free from corrosion or dirt. Use a electrical tester to confirm that at least 12 volts exist on either side of the switch.

  3. Determine the thermistor's location and look for any burned areas around it or on the vehicle's carpet, indicating that it has shifted. If so, replace it or solder the bad wire to complete the heated seat repair.

  4. Replacing the unit
  5. If the problem persists, use the electrical tester to diagnose which section of the heating element is malfunctioning, knowing that the answer might be “all." If so, you should replace the unit.

  6. Detach any wires from the seat. Connectors should only go back together one particular way. If in doubt, use tape to mark which connectors go where.​

  7. Remove the seat from the car.

  8. Disassemble the seat, separating the back and base, and removing the cushion and leather from the base.

  9. Replace all heated seat parts, including the heating element and the wiring.

  10. Put the seat together again.

  11. Reconnect the wiring.

Last updated June 11, 2018