We’ve all seen them, the crazy and sometimes absurd seat covers being proudly displayed by someone who wants the world to know, they love cows! You can find a seat cover for anything. Do you love flowers? There’s a seat cover for that. Love a certain sports team? Let everyone know, with a seat cover! Have a favorite kid? Why not drive around with their smiling face on the seat next to you? The point is, there are tons of options when it comes to seat covers, but are they worth it?
Car seat covers are offered in a variety of choices and styles and can protect your car from stains, tears, mold, and other damage that could otherwise lower the resale value. The right seat cover could be worth its weight in gold.
Read on to learn more about seat covers and why you might want to consider buying a set today.
Why Do People Use Seat Covers?
There are several reasons why you might consider buying a pair of seat covers:
- Protection: One of the most obvious reasons to use seat covers is to protect your seat from stains, rips, or other problems. Furthermore, they can keep leather interiors looking pristine by protecting them from the sun and other various elements.
- Comfort: People often enjoy covers because they offer added comfort. They come in a wide variety of materials, and if you have leather seats, a seat cover could be the perfect way to avoid burning your buns.
- Functionality: Have you ever vacuumed a car? Trying to get the vacuum nozzle into an often-tiny space can be difficult, if not impossible. Dirt and grime build up in these hard-to-reach places and can cause bigger problems such as mold. However, with a seat cover, you can just remove it and throw it into the washer.
- Appearance: Although we would all love to be able to afford a brand-new car, sometimes we have to settle for anything that runs, even when that anything is thirty-years-old and smells like cheese. In these cases, hiding the dingy thirty-year-old stains that speckle the seat can help make the car feel brand new again.
- Style: Humans have an inherent need to tell the world who they are, that they are special. We do this through our style. Clothes, hair color, and even the music we listen to can help us communicate to others who we are as a person, and many people use car seats to do this as well.
Are Seat Covers Bad for Your Car?
Although there are several great advantages to using a seat cover, there are a few things you should keep in mind.
- Quality: It can be tempting to buy that $3 car seat cover at the Family Dollar, but is it really a good idea? Cheap covers could cause you to inadvertently damage your seats because you think they are protected. For example, if you think the seat cover will protect your seat from stains, you might not be as quick to wipe off and clean up a spill. Meanwhile, the liquid has seeped through the cover and penetrated your car seat. To make things worse, because it is covered, it will not be able to dry as quickly, and could end up mildewing.
- Safety: Depending on what type of car you own, there could be airbags in the seat. One of the biggest problems with seat covers is that people put them on their car seats without realizing they are hindering the safety features of that seat. Moreover, it could cause the airbag to glitch and harm the passengers. If you decide to purchase a set of covers, make sure to check if your seats are equipped with airbags, and if they are, purchase covers made for those specific seats.
- Style: Yes, I know, this was listed as an advantage, but it can just as easily be a disadvantage if you are not careful. There are some things that the world just doesn’t want to know about you, or might not understand, and the wrong seat cover could cause people to think of you in the wrong light. So, while it might be funny to tell someone off with a seat cover, it might not be classy!
What Is the Most Durable Seat Cover Material?
There are several types of material used to make car seat covers. However, in order to be durable, a car seat cover must be able to stand up to different conditions and last for a while under those conditions. Let’s take a look at a few of the different types of material used for car seat covers in 2021.
Velour Seat Covers (4 Stars)
These seat covers are often known for their soft texture, but are they durable? People often use velour seat covers because they mimic the look of a natural seat cover without the added frills. This content is owned by moc.sotuaytsur. It has many of the same benefits as velvet, but because it is a pile knit fabric, it is much more durable.
Canvas Seat Covers (5 Stars)
Canvas seat covers are heavy-duty and offer a lot of protection, especially to work vehicles. However, they are not as comfortable as some of the other options. In terms of durability, canvas is one of the best.
Neoprene Seat Covers (4 Stars)
Neoprene is a type of synthetic rubber. If you’re not familiar with it, it’s what wetsuits are made from. It’s almost as durable as leather and is made to resist stains, mildew, and wear.
Leather Seat Covers (5 Stars)
Leather is a great option for a vehicle whose interior is on the shabby side but whose owner does not want to shell out the money to fully replace the interior. It can bring a sophisticated style to your vehicle. Leather is also one of the most durable materials.
Sheepskin Seat Covers (5 Stars)
It is hard not to think of posh luxury when looking at a sheepskin seat cover. They ooze wealth and style, but they are also extremely durable. Similar to leather in durability, similar to velour in feel, and extremely cushioning, there is a lot to love about sheepskin seat covers.
Spacer Mesh Seat Covers (4 Stars)
This material is actually a combination of three different layers of monofilament, which is then knitted together to create the final product. Its lightweight, breathable, and cushioning design can help keep you cool in the summer, which is the number one benefit of this type of seat cover. In the area of durability, however, they do not match up to some of the other options. Still, they remain a popular choice among car enthusiasts.
Cordura Seat Covers (5 BIG stars)
In terms of durability, Cordura beats the competition. This material is a favorite choice among companies whose vehicles are used for heavy-duty work. You are likely already familiar with this material since it is what most luggage is made from. High-wearing, waterproof, and abrasion-resistant Cordura seat covers are a great choice for vehicles that see heavy use.
Are Seat Covers Universal?
No. Not all seat covers will fit every type of vehicle. Some are made specifically for certain makes, some are made for certain styles, and some are made for certain seats. Moreover, some seat covers must be custom fitted to your vehicle in order to give it that tight look and feel that distinguishes a good seat cover from a more cheaply made one. However, there are some seat covers on the market that are universal in that they will fit on most seats, unless the seat is custom-designed, or you own a more exotic car.
Universal seat covers are usually a bit cheaper than those that are custom fit, with the biggest difference being that you can typically install universal covers yourself. By installing them, you avoid the installation fees that come with custom-fitted seat covers.
How Do I Know Which seat Covers Will Fit My Car?
When shopping for a seat cover, you will need to know some basic information about your car—make, model, year, and style. It is sometimes possible to find covers specifically for the brand of car that you own, but if they are universal, the package will tell you what type of cars they fit.
If your car no longer has the factory-installed seats, or the covers that claim to fit your seat don’t actually fit, you may need to speak with someone about getting custom-fitted car seat covers.
How Much Do Seat Covers Cost?
Below you can find information about the different types of seat covers available and the costs associated with them.
|Type of Seat Cover||Typical Cost||Notes|
|Universal Cover||$15 – $250 Each||It depends on where you buy them and what seat you are buying them for.|
|Velour||$40- $450||Average: $250|
|Canvas||$80 – $400||Average: $150|
|Neoprene||$65 – $229||Average: $150|
|Leather||$40 – $2000||Average: $350|
|Spacer Mesh||$40 – $250||Average: $140|
|Cordura||$119 – $320||Average: $160|
When determining the price of seat covers it is important to remember that prices will vary depending on both quality and type. For example, you may be able to find a cheaper seat cover than listed above, but it may not be a good quality cover. Additionally, be cautious of companies that claim to be selling one thing (such as leather) but giving you something much different (faux leather).
What Type of Seat Cover Should I Get?
Before you spend money on a seat cover, you will first want to ask yourself what type will be best for you and your needs. For example, if you have a furry friend who likes to take long weekend rides with you, you are going to want a cover that is easy to clear and, perhaps, waterproof—depending on how long that ride is! If you have kids, you might want to look for something that will protect your seat from stains or other damage.
If you use your vehicle for heavy-duty work (like construction), you will want something rugged and tear-resistant. Before you start shopping for a cover, ask yourself, what do I need my seat cover to do?
Check out the Amazon link below for car seat covers conveniently delivered to your door.Amazon Car Seat Covers
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- About the Author
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John Cunningham is an Automotive Technician and writer on Rustyautos.com. He’s been a mechanic for over twenty-five years and has worked for GM, Volvo, Volkswagen, Land Rover, and Jaguar dealerships.
John uses his know-how and experience to write fluff-free articles that help fellow gearheads with all aspects of vehicle ownership, including maintenance, repair, and troubleshooting.