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    Thread: Woohoo! Fixed my leaning seat finally

    1. 06-20-2004 10:56 PM #1
      Ever since I got this car I have had one main dissatisfaction- the driver's seat feels like it leans to the left. Like maybe the PO always leaned against the door and compressed the seat cushion on that side, or who knows what. I had looked up the price of a new seat foam and was about to pay around $80 to order one, when I decided I should have a look-see first.
      Boy am I glad I did. The cushion was fine. This foam is very high quality and not likely to compress or break down. So I was eyeing the frame to see if it was bent or cracked and it looked fine also. Finally I took a look at the height adjuster mechanism.
      There are teeth on the height adjuster on each side and a pawl that engages it to determine the height. The adjuster handle is on the outside and operates the outside pawl directly with a bar linkage. The inside pawl is connected to the handle by a cable that runs around the front of the seat frame. I noticed that I could operate the lever slowly and the outer pawl would completely disengage before the inner one began to move. Problem found!! When you choose a height and release the lever, the inner pawl grabs immediately but it takes a while for the outer pawl to engage. Meanwhile your weight pushes it down a little where it can't catch the intended tooth and it drops down to the next one.
      The problem is that the cable is loose and just needs to be tightened. There is an adjuster under the seat and it is accessible without any disassembly. Just remove the seat and turn it on its side.
      Here is a view of the cable and the gear teeth.

      And a closeup of the adjuster. I only wish I could have figured it out before I took the seat apart. Oh well, at least I know the condition of the rest of it.

      Loosen the jam nuts and unscrew the adjuster while keeping an eye on the lever it connects to. When you see the lever move a little, back off half a turn and tighten the nuts. Now it sits flat like it should. No more backache on trips, and I didn't waste $80!

      Modified by A2B4guy at 9:57 PM 3-9-2007

    2. Member Shikaroka's Avatar
      Join Date
      Dec 12th, 2002
      Charleston, WV
      06-21-2004 09:15 AM #2
      Great Job!
      You are always finding good, easy, cheap fixes.
      Thanks for the info, and good pics!

    3. 06-21-2004 10:25 AM #3
      Cool. Mine leans a bit too. I'll check this out.
      I can say, from the evidence in my car, that the PO was an overweight smoker, who enjoyed, rather voraciously, french fries and also was a Janet Jackson fan. I cobbled this profile from the evidence under the rear and front seats when I bought the car.

    4. Member
      Join Date
      Jan 19th, 2002
      Victoria, BC
      '91 B3 16vTurbo Passat
      06-21-2004 02:25 PM #4
      Good catch! I actually had to take my drivers seat apart to find where my problem was. The springs for the lombard support had actually broken on the door side so that the seat sagged on that side.

    5. Member InSaNeBoY's Avatar
      Join Date
      Feb 16th, 1999
      Topsham, ME
      06-21-2004 03:06 PM #5
      I have to have take the drivers side one apart on the 97, it creeks whenever I shift my weaght and it's beginning to drive me up the wall... anyone have that happen? or gimme a starting point to finding it?
      2015 VW Jetta S
      *in need of second car.

    6. 06-21-2004 04:55 PM #6
      I would start by checking the plastic parts and looking for loose bolts. In the "hinge" area where the backrest pivots, there are two black plastic bushings that should be checked or replaced. You'll find several bolts to check, and the white "feet" that fit over the sliders at the bottom should be replaced if worn or cracked. Do this cable adjustment also.

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