Universal Car Seat Covers
Car seat covers are a popular and valuable accessory for your car. Whether you want to protect the resale price and appearance of a new car; improve the appearance of old, stained, or damaged upholstery; or find a temporary solution for traveling with kids and pets, a seat cover is a great option for extending the value of your car. They can also be used to simply add style, personality, and comfort to the interior of your car.
While there are hundreds of options available, the first thing to consider is whether a new seat cover will fit into your car. All seat covers come in one of three basic types.
Fitted/custom seat covers
These are tailored to the make, model, and seats of your specific car. High-end fitted seat covers are made-to-measure, and mimic the appearance and fit of your car’s existing upholstery. They can look and feel as good as new without the big price tag of replacing your seats.
Semi-custom fit seat covers
Semi-custom seat covers are designed to work well with a variety of similar seat types in similar car models. They look good and fit well in a variety of vehicles, and are less expensive than custom covers.
Universal seat covers
Universal seat covers fit a wide range of seats and vehicles, regardless of make or model. They are easily installed and uninstalled, making them an inexpensive solution for temporary or changing needs.
Here are some examples of universal seat covers.
URPOWER Pet Front Seat Cover for Cars
This universal car seat cover from Urpower is waterproof, durable, and easy to clean. It protects car seats from pet hair, accidents, scratches, and dirt. It fits most cars, trucks, and SUVs, and attaches securely to prevent slipping and helping your pet to travel safely. Fast and easy to install and remove, this pet front seat cover is a great way to allow your pet to ride in comfort while preserving your upholstery.
Aries Automotive 3142-09 Black Universal Bucket Seat Cover
The Aries Seat Defender is designed to quickly and simply provide waterproof, easily cleaned protection for car seats. With nothing difficult to install or remove, the universal bucket seat cover is great for camping or fishing trips, transporting pets, days at the beach or working in the garden; any time your car’s upholstery needs extra protection in seconds. It’s machine washable and folds up small, so it can be easily stored in the car when not in use, and doesn’t slip against the seats.
Bell Automotive 22-1-56258-8 Universal Baja Blanket Bucket Seat Cover
This bucket seat cover from Bell Automotive comes in in a colorful, Southwest-inspired design, to improve the look of your car while protecting the upholstery. These car seat covers are fun and comfortable, and fit almost any bucket seats, with or without headrests. Bell Automotive is a leader in aftermarket auto accessories, and the design of these seat protectors reflects their origin in the southwest.
Unless you are buying custom seat covers, read the instructions carefully to make sure the new seat covers are compatible with your car’s safety features. Not all replacement seat covers are compatible with all airbag and seatbelt configurations, and no seat cover is worth compromising your safety.
While you are considering new seat covers, it’s a good time to consider enhancing your comfort in other ways. An add-on seat warmer or lumbar support cushion can be placed between the car seat and the new seat cover to improve your drive and give you the comfort of your dreams, without sacrificing looks.
Once you have your new seat covers, they will need to be installed. Installation can be time consuming, particularly for custom-fit seat covers, since it requires the removal of the seats. But it isn’t a difficult job, and doesn’t require special tools, and the interior of your car will be significantly improved.
Here’s how to install semi-custom seat covers
- Take the headrest off the seat. They will automatically stop at the highest height adjustment, but one more pull will remove it completely
- Slide and tilt the seat forward. You will need to be able to easily access the back of the seat
- Position the seat cover over the top of the seat
- Slide the seat cover down over the entire seat. This may be difficult due to a snug fit, but the tight fit will also help the seat covers look better afterward
- Pull the seat cover over the base of the seat. You may need to tilt the seat upright again, and stretch the cover a bit in order for it to completely cover the bottom cushion
- Using the hooks that came with the new cover, attach it to the underside of the seat, or follow the manufacturer’s instructions to attach it. Be careful not to hook anything to the sliding bar of the seat
- Cut very small slits (if necessary) in the top to allow the headrest to be reattached. If necessary, cut slits for seatbelts, armrests, or other accessories. Remember that the fabric will stretch, so be cautious with cuts, as they may grow over time
- Preserve your new seat covers by treating them. There are conditioners available for leather or vinyl, or stain- and water-repellent sprays for fabrics. Using a treatment ahead of time keeps seat covers looking newer longer, and eases cleaning
- Spot clean your seat covers with the appropriate cleaner for the material. Some covers can be periodically removed and machine washed if necessary; check the manufacturer’s instructions.
New seat covers make your car look and feel better, and later add to the resale value. The right car seat cover can make your car seats more ergonomically supportive, prevent burns from hot seats in the sun, and protect upholstery from spills, messes, and wear and tear. They are inexpensive and easy to install, so there’s no reason to go on living with old, stained, damaged car seats.