Park your Jeep where it belongs. Apply the parking brake and prepare to “warm things up.” Of course, you’re more likely to do this in your shop; but just to show it can be done outside in the fresh air behind your shop, we choose this “green” setting.
Many of today’s luxury vehicles offer rear seat heaters; but to add aftermarket rear seat heat has been difficult due to the lack of suitable switch placement locations. That, however, is an area that has changed.
In an effort to expand the restyler’s options for increased sales opportunities, Seat Comfort Systems. Park City, Utah, developed a wireless remote-control seat heater system that controls up to three distinct heating zones. This wireless remote-control system allows a switch to be mounted up front where dash space is generally abundant and control can remain with the vehicle’s operator.
Finding a suitable switch location for front seats usually is easy unless you’re installing into a four-door 2011 Jeep Wrangler, as we discovered. Here, we demonstrate front and rear seat heat installations using four single-pad heaters with a wireless controller.
Note that although other manufacturers might offer similar products and installation techniques, for the purpose of this How-To demonstration I’m using Seat Comfort systems’ wireless remote seat heater unit. Be sure to contact your manufacturer with any questions regarding product or installation.
In this installation, the seats remain in the vehicle and the power is taken directly from the battery, as the heater control has an automatic shutoff after 30 minutes. The front seats are individually controlled and the rear seats’ heat is combined with the controller unit.
We’ll start with the rear seats and then move forward.
The parts required are: four heating pads, the control box and the wireless three-zone remote heater control.
BACK SEAT HEAT:
1. Lay the heat pads on the desired area to make sure the pads will fit the application
2. Begin removing the seat cover using a flat-head screwdriver to unlatch the “J” clips.
3. Peel back the seat cover and remove any hog rings or Velcro-type attachments.
4. Slide the pad in place, route the heater connector wire through the seat foam and double-check that the heater unit lays flat.
5. Peel back the adhesive backing and carefully place and adhere the heater on the foam, ensuring that the pad lays flat without any folds.
6. Install the seat cover and secure with hog rings or other suitable attachments.
FRONT SEAT HEAT
1. Begin to remove the seat cover to expose the seat foam.
2. Remove any hog rings.
3. Apply the seat heater to the foam cushion.
4. Reinstall the seat cover and attach with hog rings.
5. Pull the seat cover and reattach the “J” clips.
6. Review the seat appearance and adjust the cover if necessary.
Run the Wiring
1. Run the 12V power wire to the battery.
2. Place an inline fuse on the power wire.
3. Run the 12V power wire through the fire wall.
4. Mount the control box inside the vehicle. The box can be mounted under the seat or under the dash.
5. Run the 12V power wire from the battery to the control box.
6. Connect the seat heater wires and run the power wire to the control box.
Attach the Remote
1. Referencing the installation guide, connect the heater wires to the desired controller output wire and run the heater ground wires to a common ground. Using the touchpad remote, test each location to verify operation. Each zone has an audible chirp for on and off operation.
2. Find a suitable location for the wireless remote and clean the area.
3. Remove the adhesive backing and firmly place the remote in the desired location.
Rick Walterson is owner of Park City, Utah-based Seat Comfort Systems.