Here’s what we were starting with. It was completely functional but certainly lacked visual appeal. With the slip cover off it didn’t look any better.
The first step in our interior rehab was to unwrap the new seat cover from BROTHERS and lay it out in the sun for a little while to soften up so we could stretch it easier and eliminate the creases from shipping.
The old seat upholstery must come off, which is easily done by grabbing the old hog rings with a pair of pliers and twisting them off.
The original seat over will then slip right off. Don’t throw it away; you’ll need it later.
Once the upholstery and foam are removed from the seat back, the back and bottom seat frames can be separated. The two pieces are held together by four screws, two on each side. They might take a little effort to get out. Ours did.
The seat tracks were then removed from the bottom seat frame to allow the cover to come off.
When we got the bottom torn down, we noticed a broken spring on each side. This fractured spring runs from the outside spring down to the seat frame and helps give the outside spring support when passengers are entering and exiting the seat. There are some spring kits available to repair some of these, but we didn’t have one so we pulled a MacGyver. To help give the spring some added support we used a hacksaw and cut off a piece of the original bottom cushion and stuffed it in between the outside spring and the seat frame. Although it wouldn’t have anywhere to go once the new cover was in place, we went ahead and secured it to the spring with a couple of zip-ties.
Here’s why you need to save the old covers. Several wires are sewn into the edges to help the hog rings hold the cover on without ripping the material. These wires need to be removed and transferred to the new covers.
The new covers come with a pocket sewn into the edges for the wires that can easily be slipped in. Take your time to work the wire around so you don’t rip a hole in the new cover.
Once the wires are in the new cover has been warmed up in the sun, it’s time to get busy. The new seat bottom foam just sits on top of the frame and the cover slips over it.
We carefully flipped the seat over and placed it on a clean work surface, in our case it was the tailgate of a truck. We then found and marked the center of the front edge of the cover.
With the center marked we hog-ringed it to the center hole in the frame. The hog-ring pliers and rings are available at BROTHERS. It’s then just a matter of working yourself around, alternating from side to side and hog-ringing the cover in place. The bottom cover went on tighter than the seat back, which might have been due to the new foam. The seat back went on with no stretching required and as a result ended up with a couple of small wrinkles but nothing bad.
When both pieces were covered, we bolted them back together and hog-ringed the seat back material to the sides of the bottom to cover up the side of the back seat frame. The finished seat looks like a pro did it, and best of all, we can proudly say we did it ourselves.
The final interior fix was replacing the worn out armrests which really detracted from our new seat and otherwise nice door panels.
Before we could install the new armrests we had to poke a hole through the back so we could run the screw through. We did this with a Phillips screwdriver and then trimmed away the excess with a razor so the armrests would sit right up against the door panels.
With the original screws, the new armrests went on easily and provided the finishing touch.
The finished interior looks better than factory-fresh and makes the truck much more enjoyable to drive.