Originally Posted by DanTwoLakes
DO NOT, under any circumstances, steam the inside of leather!! You will shrink it. DO NOT, under any circumstances put water on the inside of leather, for the same reason. ( leather can be cleaned with just a damp cloth after the seat cover is on)
I have never heated or steamed a car seat cover to get it on in my life. If it doesn't look good after the first time you put the seat cover on, there is another problem that needs to be addressed. Steaming or heating is not a substitute for cutting and sewing the seat cover correctly.
Steaming seat foam may get indentations out of a piece of foam, but steaming will not completely revive old foam. Even the best seat foam loses its density over time, and nothing will make it come back.
I'm not trying to preach, and I'm also not trying to criticize you, Mark.
See Alan? I told you Dan would have some input...
No offense taken, Dan. I wondered about that as I was typing it, and that's why I mentioned you, and the fact that I hadn't worked with leather yet. I was hoping you'd say something if I had some bad advice.
I do have a comment though. I did upholstery in a factory setting, as I may have told you - I upholstered dental chairs. We used steamers and heat guns all the time to get the vinyl (Naugahyde) to conform to the contours of the seat forms. Now please understand that I'm not questioning you, but isn't the use of a steamer and/or heat gun considered 'par for the course' when it comes to upholstery? Some corners are pretty tricky, and sometimes you don't want a wrinkle where it seems to want to be - you get my drift. Steamers and heat guns softened up the vinyl enough to kind of trick it into doing what you wanted it to do, whether it wanted to or not.
As far as a steamer 'reviving' seat foam is concerned, no - it'll still be 20 year old foam. But it'll sure be softer, puffier, easier to handle, and won't have that 'nasty old foam' smell. It'll also bring the foam back a lot closer to it's original shape.