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Ford Seat Rebuild
Here is the disassembly and repair of the seats from the F-150 - F-350 from 92-96.
First, you need to start with a seat
This was the passenger seat in a 94 F-150. The tracks and mounts will differ from model to model (150 to 250, crewcab to extended cab), but the basic seat pan is the same on all of them. The seat pan was similar on the Aerostar and the Explorer. The difference was the bolt holes they used to mount to their respective tracks.
To start, you need to remove the side panel. This is attached with 3 screws into the side.
The switch for the lumbar support/air compressor are mounted in this panel. The hoses can be removed by just pulling on them.
The wiring can be disconnected with a plug underneath the seat. The plastic should now be free.
To remove the tracks, there will be bolts in the track at the front and back of the seat. You will have to move the adjuster to gain access to each (move it all the way back to get at the front, and vice versa)
Now here is a turning point. If you feel there is something wrong/broken/missing in the back section, now is the time to look. The reason for this is that it is WAY easier to get the back of the seat apart while it is still attached to the base section.
First, fold the seat forward as far as it will go. This will expose the plastic edge that holds the bottom of the seat together.
Undo this all the way across. Note how it came apart, as it will need to be reassembled the same way by folding the one edge into the other.
Once it is open all the way across, take a look inside, there will be a steel frame with foam glued to it. The goal now is to reach inside and pull/pry the foam from the steel. It is a pain to reach all the way in and free up the foam from the steel, so expect to get frustrated. Once you have it freed up, you can just pull on the fabric and it will pull the foam with it. Kneel on the seat base, as it will give you a good position to pull from, as well as lots of leverage to pull with.
Once you have it off, the steel frame and airbag should be exposed
Flip the seat onto its side exposing the base. Undo the connection to the airbag air hose. it is located between the compressor and the connection harness for the lumbar switch.
Then remove the two bolts for the seatback adjuster.
Then remove the single seatback pivot bolt on the other side
The seatback should now be free of the seat. The hose will pull out from a small hole in the back of the fabric.
The seat fabric is also interchangeable. The shape and the fasteners allow the fabric to be used from drivers to passenger sides, the only difference is the holes cut into the sides for the plastic covers and the seat adjusters. This is handy if you have a set that the drivers is worn out, but the passenger seat is still good, or you find a decent set at a wrecker. Since I ended up with two good passenger seat covers, I modified a passenger cover to become my new drivers seat.
To remove the seat cover, undo the white plastic retainers. This is done by forcing down the foam, and giving the fabric some slack. The fabric will allow enough room to get the plastic off of the steel edge
NOTE: the front plastic clip goes onto the black steel rod , not the frame. If it is attached to the seat pan, it will not be tight enough on reassembly
Once the plastic retainers are free, the foam and seatcover will come off of the seat pan.
To get the seatcover off of the foam, there are 2 velcro strips and 3 hog rings. Pull slowly on the cover, with your hand supporting the velcro. There is a chance that the velcro will tear free of the foam and stay attached to the seat cover. Once the seat cover is free of the velcro, the hog rings need to be removed. Side cutters or needle nose pliers work well for this. Just cut them, or bend them so they open up.
You should now be left with a piece of foam and a seat cover
There is no big differences between passenger seats and drivers seats. They are pretty much the same except for the hinges being flipped over to the other side. The same methods for taking apart a passenger seat will be the same as a drivers side.
More to come........
This now leaves the steel part of the rebuild process
On the back, if the lumbar support feels loose, it is probably because the steel crossmember is cracked. Repair by rewelding it.
Now onto the seat base
Take a close look at the grid with the springs. Check for any broken spokes. This seat had two
Check where the springs are attached as well, to ensure they arent very worn
This set wasnt bad, but when I redid the seats when I got my truck, they were worn in twice as far.
If you have a welder, this is a good time to reinforce that area.
If you bend up the tabs at the front of the grid, it will free it from the seatbase
Now for the fun part. I thought it was odd that the grid was not supported the whole way across the front , so I undid all the spokes and got a longer front rod, so that it would reach to both sides as well as the tabs at the front. I then made a hole in the sides for the rod to sit in, and replaced the grid into the tabs
The spokes are just bent around and attached to themselves. I bent them off with a pair of pliers, and rebent then when going around the new rod.
Re-attach the springs at the back with a screwdriver. It makes life a lot easier. Hook the spring on the shaft of the screwdriver, and place the other end over the grid, pull on the screwdriver, and the spring will slide down the shaft onto the grid
I added the spring in the middle, as well, as not indicated in this picture, if you want a firmer ride, fill up all the holes with springs. When I redid my seats, I did not do this, and I wish I had.
Thats about all you can do with the seat pan. Onto the Foam
I did a post a while back about using aerostar seat foams. I still had a piece of foam from those seats, as well, the passenger foam was still good from the 94 seats. I chose to use the aerostar foam, as I knew it had even less miles on it than the 94 seats did.
I glued small pieces of strip foam that I cut from the old foam into the grooves of the aerostar foam. This was just to make sure that it was one solid piece of foam. You can get away without this, but I wanted to do just to make sure everything stayed in place. I used 3M Super 77 spray adhesive.
I needed to cut a few notches in the foam, to accommodate the plastic screw covers and the hoses for the airbag
Here is the hog ring bar in the aerostar foam
and the hog ring bar in the F-150 foam
Nothing too technical there, just the place where the seat cover attaches to the base. The difference between the two foams is the distance from the top of the foam down to the hog ring bar
SIDEBAR: If you are using a passenger side cover to redo your drivers side, make all your cuts before reinstalling the cover. I just held the two together side by side, and drew through the holes to make the marks for the new holes. Also since there would now also be holes where there were no holes before, I sewed a piece of cloth in behind the holes that were no longer required. I figured this would help keep the seats looking better longer, without stretching the holes out.
There is over an inch of difference. This makes reattaching the foam difficult with hog rings. I used cable ties. Its probably not the best idea, but it was all I had
The length you make the cable ties determines how far the seam of the seat goes into the foam.
If you are using an Aerostar foam, it will not have the velcro strips on it for holding the fabric down. I have not noticed a real difference not having the velcro on there. If you were concerned about it, I guess you could Super 77 both sides to ensure it sticks.
Its time to reassemble.
Place the foam with cover on the seatpan
Lean on the seat and hood the plastic retaining clips back onto the seatpan. Make sure that the foam that skirts the seatpan is in place, and not bunched up.
Make note of where the hole is for the Seatback airbag hose. I just about forgot, so I just grabbed my keys and stuck them in the hole so I wouldn't lose it.
Once all the plastic retainers are on, you are finished with the seat base
Now the reassembly of the Seat Back.
Stretch the foam and cover over the seat back frame again. The plastic pieces on the bottom are easy to reassemble. Stretch the fabric until you get a fold in the straight plastic piece, and fold it into the c shaped part.
Once you have that done up, you can reinstall the seat back onto the seat base. I apologize that I have no pictures of the re-assembly. It is basically the reverse order of how it came apart.
Hopefully this helps
Last edited by lwillson; 09-20-2010 at 03:11 PM.