Puzzled? Defective leather seat covers?

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Admin
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Puzzled? Defective leather seat covers?

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Faulty products. During my long 79 TA Resto project many faulty after market products were encountered. The biggest ones dealt with the front and rear bumper covers. Both were manufactured overseas for an American vendor. Fit and finish were terrible. Recently I encountered another product that has grossly disappointed me and that was a pair of 100% leather covers for my 20 year old Corvette. The original covers were less than ideal covers for interior display at car shows. My efforts to reinvigorate the leather never rose to a high level like new covers would do so, after saving sufficient funds, a new aftermarket pair were purchased along with new foam and both seats were professionally recovered. This purchase and installation took place in March 2019. The new leather looked fantastic for a while.

Today, 21 months later they are back at the vendor's shop that manufactured them for either repair or replacement. What happened to require this action? The leather became very hard and on one chair back seat bolster the hide actually separated from itself. The upholstery shop that installed the covers inspected them and opined that the leather was old and should never have broken down as it did.

From my own car experience, I have never encountered anything like this. We've owned several cars that had very nice leather interior and lots of use and the leather always looked good and were easily maintained. Puzzling to me (and very disappointing) that leather would fail in such a short time when the car saw next to zero use and the leather was not abused or neglected in anyway.
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rkellerjr
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Re: Puzzled? Defective leather seat covers?

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What a peta!
Rich
1975 TA - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCENVXA ... zhw/videos
When you turn your car on does it return the favor

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Re: Puzzled? Defective leather seat covers?

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My Corvette's seat covers are still with the manufacturer of them. They have been slow to respond to my questions and finally after vague responses told me I could buy new covers.

They told me the all leather seat covers were under warranty for 1 year and my problem fell beyond the warranty period. They told me warranty information was on their website and I should have known that, however, I could not find anything about a warranty period when I checked. Needless to say, I wasn't a happy camper. They should have stood by their products since they said this has never happened to any of the leather products in the past and referenced thousands of quality seat covers. Hmmm, I must be the lucky one.

Without going into critical details, they are making 2 new seat bottoms and 2 new chair back "halos" as they described them and returning my center leather inserts as they are in excellent condition. They are not doing this for free.
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67drake
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Re: Puzzled? Defective leather seat covers?

Post by 67drake »

Bummer. Too bad they didn’t stand behind their product better than that.

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Re: Puzzled? Defective leather seat covers?

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The rep I was dealing with wasn't a good listener nor did he take down enough details. In my last conversation he wasn't aware that the complete set was returned to the company. He thought it was just the "pulled away from itself" bolster. I complained right from the beginning that was the main thing that caught my eye and when I went further examining all the leather, most of it was not supple but hard and brittle. Since the car was seldom used and protected from the elements it came as a shock to me. These new leather seats were worse than the original seat covers installed by the Corvette plant. That is what prompted me to take photos and contact the manufacturer/vendor. My professional upholstery guy told me there is a 3-year warranty on seat covers from most manufacturers he did business with. Since I had them 21 months or less, I thought they should take care of it.

The rep argued that he has sold thousands of leather seat covers and no one but me has experienced such a poor leather condition. That was his premise and finalized it with stating there was only a 1 year warranty anyway so I was complaining too late.

With thousands of "satisfied" customers, they did little to deal with my lousy leather situation.

I spent $1500 for the covers that included all new foam. Then I spent another $500 to have them professional installed and fitted by my upholstery guy. This was followed with removal of the covers, paying over $90 to ship them back to the factory. Now another $675 for new pieces for both seats plus reinstallation of the covers on the chairs by my upholstery guy. The rep just wanted me to take the full $2000 loss on the seats and buy new seat covers and have them installed. Nothing like paying twice for the same thing!!!!

Another option was to go with another company (there are only 2 that I know of that manufacture Corvette leather seat covers) and I would have to spend another $1250- 1500 for them. Pretty crappy situation. So, the lesser of two evils was me paying $675 to get most of two new replacement covers made for me and returning my center inserts for both seats. Just amazing failure to back their product. I am happy or satisfied? Hardly. BTW these are made in the USA.

I have 35 year old military combat boots (black leather) that have been in rain, snow, sleet and swamp muck and they are in far better shape than the seat leather returned to the vendor/manufacturer.
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rkellerjr
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Re: Puzzled? Defective leather seat covers?

Post by rkellerjr »

Sometimes, if I don't like the rep I'm talking to, I'll hang up and call back in and get a different rep ... its worked sometimes. Sorry to hear about the troubles, that really stinks.
Rich
1975 TA - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCENVXA ... zhw/videos
When you turn your car on does it return the favor

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Re: Puzzled? Defective leather seat covers?

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Just under a week has passed since talking with the key rep at the vendor. He told me it would take 2 weeks to have new leather parts for my seats built. I am wondering how close that will be to reality. If it is true I should hear from them around 3 March.

[My upholstery guy has leather hides to custom build and or fix worn leather car seats. I would think that a leather seat manufacturer would have some hides fashioned into seat covers for immediate sale.]
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