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Do Seat Warmers Use Gas?

Seat warmers are a nice feature to have on cold winter days to keep you warm. But have you ever considered whether these seat warmers or heated seats will use up your gas? Fortunately, we're here to answer those questions and go over what we've learned about this heated car seat.

Yes, seat warmers use gas in the sense that the electric system, which is supported by the battery and engine, provides power to the seats. The heaters generally use a minimal amount of gas because turning the alternator requires a very small amount of energy to generate electricity.

Seat warmers are a great wintertime convenience. In this article, we'll learn more about these seat warmers, including how they work and their benefits and drawbacks. We will also discuss how to keep them in a good condition over time. Keep reading until the end!

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Car interior view of the dashboard from the back, Do Seat Warmers Use Gas?

Do Seat Warmers Use Gas? 

Seat warmers need electricity to operate, and resistance heaters consume a significant amount of electricity. That electricity is supplied by the vehicle's electrical system, which receives power from only two sources: the engine and the battery.

The battery in a non-electric car is not designed to run indefinitely, so some energy must come from the engine. Creating the required electricity places an additional load on the engine, increasing fuel consumption.

How Does Seat Warmer Work? 

A woman presses a seat heating button inside a car in the winter.

A relay switch controls your heated seats, allowing a small electric current to take control over a larger current. When you press the button to activate your heated seat, a small electric current flows through a coil within the relay switch.

As the current flows through the coil, a magnetic field is created, which pulls a nearby open switch closed. When this happens, a circuit is completed, and electricity is sent from your car's battery to the heating element located in the seat of your vehicle.

When you turn on your seat heater, you may hear a clicking sound. If you hear this sound, it is just the relay closing and is not a cause for concern. If you're like most drivers, you're probably curious about how car seats are kept from overheating and burning you while you're driving.

Your heated seats are equipped with thermostats and sensors to keep you safe. The thermostat constantly monitors the temperature of your car seats and sends a signal to the relay switch when the desired temperature is reached.

When your car seat begins to cool, the thermostat activates the relay switch, preparing it for use when needed. Many vehicles have "high" and "low" temperature settings, which give you more control over the temperature of your seat cushions. 

How Long Does A Seat Warmer Last?

Seat warmers have a lifespan of 10 to 30 years, depending on how frequently they are used and the conditions of the vehicle.

The lifespan of heated seats varies greatly depending on a variety of factors. Proper maintenance and use will have a significant impact on the lifespan of your heated seats.

How Do You Clean Your Heated Car Seat?

The majority of car seats are made of leather, cloth, or vinyl. Cleaning each type requires different approach to ensure that the job is done correctly and without causing damage to the material.

Before you begin cleaning, make sure to vacuum the surrounding areas and the seats to remove as much dirt as possible from the seats. Following are some guidelines you can use depending on the material of your car seat: 

For Leather Car Seats

Cleaning and maintaining leather can be difficult because the color of leather changes and becomes lighter over time. You can purchase a high-quality leather maintenance or cleaning product to ensure that the color remains consistent and well-maintained.

There are many spray-on cleaning products on the market. Others can also be wiped with a towel. Make sure to thoroughly dry your leather seats with a microfiber cloth.

Click to see this Leather Cleaner on Amazon.

For Cloth Car Seats

Cloth car seats absorb odors and stain easily. You can clean your cloth seats with an all-purpose upholstery cleaner. If there are any stains, you can either wash them or use a stain remover. You can also buy spray-on disinfectants that can remove odors.

Click to see this Upholstery Cleaner on Amazon.

For Vinyl Car Seats

Vinyl car seats are less difficult to clean than leather seats. Simply select a cleaner that is safe for vinyl. You use a spray bottle with tap water and dish soap or laundry detergent mixed in. A damp cloth and baking soda can also be used.

Simply spray your car seats with a mixture of water and laundry detergent and scrub them with a damp cloth to remove dirt and stains, or sprinkle baking soda on the seats and gently scrub them with a damp cloth to remove dirt and stains.

Click to see this Baking Soda on Amazon.

How Often Should You Clean Your Car Seats?

Close up view of perforated black leather car interior.

Stains, dirt, and other debris will inevitably accumulate on car seats. You should clean your car seat regularly, preferably once a month or once a week if you have children or pets.

Food, dust, stains, and other elements can become trapped between cracks, so it is critical to clean them thoroughly. If your seat covers are removable, make sure to wash them when needed. Also, make sure to disinfect your car seats regularly.

What Are The Advantages Of  Seat Warmer?

A switch to activate heated seats in car seats.

Below is a list of the advantages of using heated seats. 

Warmth

The primary advantage of heated seats is that they keep you warm. In most cases, the heating system in your car is sufficient to keep you warm, but in extreme temperatures, you may require a little warmer.

Furthermore, some people are just cold no matter what. If you or someone you ride with has this problem, heated seats may be beneficial.

Moreover, since the heat is close to your body, you can warm up faster than if you only used heat from the car's system. If you're constantly cold, heated seats will be your best bud, especially on long trips.

Chronic Pain Relief

Most people are aware that applying heat to their backs can help relieve lower back pain. Heat therapy has been shown to hasten the healing process. This is accomplished by increasing blood flow to the muscles of the lower back, which promotes healing.

This increased blood flow brings more oxygen, white blood cells, platelets, and vital nutrients to the damaged tissue, assisting in healing. 

When you are exposed to heat, your sensory nerves respond by releasing chemical messengers that dilate blood vessels and increase blood flow. The heat and increased blood flow assist in raising the skin's temperature to match your body's core temperature.

When your skin reaches that temperature, your blood absorbs the excess heat and protects you from burns.

Heat will also transfer from the skin's surface deep into the muscles, increasing blood circulation.

Reduces Stiffness-Related Pain

Long-distance driving can cause back stiffness. The heat from the car seats can assist in stretching the soft tissues surrounding the spine, which include connective tissue, muscles, and adhesions.

Regular heat therapy while driving can help to reduce stiffness and injury, strengthen trunk movements and increase range of motion.

What Are The Disadvantages Of Seat Warmer? 

A modern young man in his car rubbing and blowing hi hand so he can warm up himself.

With every positive, there are some drawbacks. The following is a list of the disadvantages of heated seats.

Mold And Mildew Prone

Heated seats can cause mold and mildew growth in leather seats. When the seats are activated, the heat from them changes the temperature of the car interior.

The temperature change in the vehicle can be so dramatic over time that the humidity levels change. This increased humidity can encourage the growth of toxic mold or mildew. It can also make your seats smell over time.

Difficulty Removing Dirt

Seat heaters are extremely damaging to leather because they make it difficult to remove grime, stains, and soot. This is because heat can cause stains and dirt to become permanently embedded in the leather.

When stains and dirt accumulate on the seat while the heater is turned on, they become difficult to remove. Furthermore, the leather will lose its suppleness over time.

Damage Your Leather Color

Heated seats are probably not a good idea with leather. The vulnerability of heated leather seats is that the color of your leather will change. When the heated seats are turned on, the leather may change over time as a result of continuous exposure to high temperatures.

How Much Does A Heated Car Seat Cost To Install?

If you want a heated seat, you can get one installed for $650 to $2400, depending on the make and model. The old material will be replaced with your preferred fabric, the foam will be added, and the springs will be repaired. 

Hiring a professional will cost you between $500 and $800 for their labor, with typical labor costs ranging between $150 and $400. 

If you have some experience in this field, you could save a lot of money by doing it yourself instead of hiring a professional.

However, hiring experts will greatly simplify the process. You will not have to exert any effort because the professionals will have the necessary knowledge and expertise to perform the upgrade. Best of all, the average installation time is only 1 to 3 hours.

It's A Wrap!

Now that you know that seat warmers will only use a small amount of your gas, you should learn how to use this feature efficiently and how to properly maintain your seat warmer so that you can enjoy it for a long time. 

Made it to the end? Here are other articles you might find helpful:

Do Cars Consume More Fuel in Summer or Winter?

Do I Need To Warm Up My Car Before Driving?