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How Much Does it Cost to Reupholster Car Seats?

In this article, I will tell you about the costs related to DIY reupholstering of your car seats, reupholstering of your car seats using small machines and reupholstering of your car seats by professionals. Read more

How Much Does it Cost to Reupholster Car Seats?

Are you worried about the reupholstering of your car seats?

Do you know the methods and the expenses that come alongside?

You don’t need to sweat even a bit, because I have you covered!

When we talk about the reupholstering of a car seat, the things that you should keep in mind are the various methods for reupholstering, the materials that you will need during the process, and your budget for getting the job done.

As you’re familiar with the fact that car seats after excessive usage can wear out and become rough. So, they should be reupholstered after some time to get that fresh and shiny look back.

If you’re familiar with the suitable methods and how much money you have to spend to get your car seats reupholstered, it will help you a lot.

If you choose the most suitable method according to your own budget, you can get the car seats reupholstered in no time.

In this guide, I will explain the complete details related to the different methods and the cost associated with each method.

Before I start explaining the methods and their costs, here is a small overview of all the methods and it won’t take you much time to read it. This is only if you don’t want to read the entire guide.

  • Remove the seats from the car
  • Carefully remove the upholstery
  • Inspect and replace the padding
  • Clean the seats
  • Attach the new fabric
  • Sew and trim it accordingly
  • Secure the hog rings
  • Reassemble the car seats

Reupholstering with small machines: For this method, you will need materials like a sewing machine, padding, staple gun, steam cleaner, trim removal tools, etc.

  • Choose suitable tools according to your workspace
  • Remove the seats from the car
  • Carefully remove the upholstery
  • Inspect and replace the padding
  • Utilize a portable sewing machine
  • Use a small stapler to fasten staples
  • Focus on detailed stitching

Reupholstering by Professionals: Talking about getting the job done by professionals, you would need to find upholstery shops for your car seats. Visit different shops and consult professionals. Take your car to the shop to get those seats reupholstered. Keep yourself updated regarding the process and when the job is done review the final result and take your car home.

I have briefly discussed the three methods to get your car seats reupholstered, now I will discuss their details thoroughly.

Preparing for Reupholster

Before you start with the actual reupholstering process, the preparation stage holds a lot of value.

When you’re going to start reupholstering your car seats, you should take care of some important factors i.e., the materials that you need and also the methods that you’re going to choose.

Keeping your materials gathered with you before starting the actual process, saves your quality time and also your precious efforts.

You would require various materials like the new upholstery fabric, sewing machine, stapler, ring hogs and pliers, screwdriver, etc.

So, if you want to get the job done in no time and without wasting your valuable efforts, gather all the materials beforehand.

If you want to make the re-upholstering process flawless, you can get quality advice from experts. This would help you to avoid making any mistakes.

Make sure that you use the most suitable reupholstering method for your car seats according to the materials that you have and also according to your budget.

Stick to the basic guidelines for the re-upholstering process to avoid any type of damage to the car seats. You can either choose from DIY reupholstering, small machines reupholstering, or reupholstering by professionals which is easier and cost-effective for you.

Average Cost?

Coming to the average cost for reupholstering your car seats, depends on the reupholstering method that you’re choosing.

I’ve researched extensively to find the average cost for each method, and the respective average cost is mentioned in their respective category.

Method 1: DIY Reupholstering Car Seats

DIY car seat reupholstering

Materials Needed:

  1. New Upholstery Fabric
  2. Foam Padding
  3. Scissors
  4. Hog Ring Pliers and Hog Rings
  5. Needle and Heavy-duty Thread
  6. Trim Removal Tools


1. Remove the Car Seats:

Before starting the re-upholstering process, you have to remove the car seats from your car. Firstly, disconnect your car battery and then carefully remove the car seats from your car making sure that they are not damaged in the process.
Stay cautious at all times and I would prefer you to use the car’s guide to follow the proper steps for taking out your car seats.

2. Carefully Remove Existing Upholstery:

After taking out your car seats, you’ll have to remove the existing upholstery from them. Carefully use the trim removal tools to take off the old upholstery.
Remember the order of the layers of the car seats, as this holds a lot of importance for when you’re ready to reassemble the car seats after the re-upholstering process is complete.

3. Inspect and Replace Padding:

As the upholstery has been removed, you can proceed with the process. Inspect the condition of your car seat’s padding. After fully examining it, if the condition of the padding is bad and it’s worn out, replace it with new foam padding. Make sure that the desired level of comfort is achieved after changing the padding.

4. Clean the Car Seats:

5. Cut and Attach New Fabric:

Get your new upholstery fabric and cut it exactly according to the size of your car seats. Place the fabric on the car seat and attach it with it using a heavy-duty thread and a needle. Start from the center and thoroughly work on the entire seat. This adds that polished finish to the seat.

6. Sew and Trim:

You can use a sewing machine for detailed stitching on the seat. Remember to trim down the excessive fabric using specific size scissors to add that finished look to the seat.

7. Secure with Hog Rings:

You can also use hog ring pliers and hog rings to secure the fabric properly over the seat where heavy-duty thread stitching is not suitable. This makes sure that the fabric is entirely fixed on the seat and is secured.

8. Reassemble the Car Seats:

After getting the reupholstering done, reattach the parts that you just reupholstered with the car seat’s frame. Making sure that all the components are aligned correctly and their order is also as it was in the beginning. Check the entire seat after reassembling it.

9. Inspect the Finished Car Seats:

Afterward inspect the finished car seat, to look for any untrimmed fabric or uneven places on the seat. Make those adjustments properly and also sit on the car seat to make sure that comfort is provided and it’s a proper fit.

DIY Car Reupholstering Cost

Talking about the average cost for DIY reupholstering.

The required materials can cost you about $50 to $300, which totally depends on the fabric that you’ve chosen and also the padding.

Method 2: Small Machines for Reupholstering

car seat reupholstery with tools cost

Materials Needed:

  1. Portable Sewing Machine
  2. New Upholstery Fabric
  3. Foam Padding
  4. Scissors
  5. Staple Gun and Staples
  6. Sewing Machine
  7. Steam Cleaner or Upholstery Cleaner
  8. Trim Removal Tools

Here are the Steps:

1. Easy to handle Tools

For the re-upholstering process, use such tools that are easy to handle and carry around. This will help you flawlessly work with the seats and ensure smooth and efficient results. Always prefer portable and easy-to-maneuver tools, so that you don’t have to waste your valuable efforts.

2. Follow DIY Steps 1-3

You have to follow the same steps as the DIY reupholstering process in terms of removing the car seats from your car, removing the current upholstery material, and replacing the worn-out padding with the new padding. Remember to perform these steps before the actual reupholstering process.

3. Clean the car seats

After removing the seats as well as the upholstery, clean the car seat’s frame either with a steam cleaner or an upholstery cleaner before applying the new upholstery fabric. This provides you with a fresh base to work with.

4. Use a Portable Sewing Machine

For the stitching process, you can use a portable sewing machine.

When you want to do the reupholstering with high detailing and precision, you can use a sewing machine to get the job done. Using a portable sewing machine will make the car seat secure and durable.

5. Small stapler for Stapling

To attach the fabric firmly to the car seat’s frame, use a small stapler. This is comparatively easy to carry around and due to its lightweight, it is easy to use.

Fasten the staples into the surface so that the new upholstery fabric is firmly held in place. Stay cautious while using the stapler to avoid any kind of damage.

6. Adding those details and precision

If you want to add those details in the reupholstering process and also that precision, you need to work carefully. Use those small tools like the portable sewing machine and the stapler to complete the reupholstering process ensuring high quality and precise results.

Take your time to add those details, specifically those extra small details that add freshness to your car seats.

How much does it cost?

When talking about the average cost for the reupholstering process using small machines, it ranges from $100 to $500 which is slightly lower than professionals and higher than DIY. Remember that the cost varies depending on the materials you’re working with.

Method 3: Take to the Professionals for Car Reupholstering

professional car seat reupholstery cost

Last up on the list is the reupholstering by professionals. The steps for this method are mentioned below:


1. Find shops

You’ll have to look around to find upholstery shops. Remember to look for a number of shops so that you can choose amongst them the most suitable one to get your car seats reupholstered ensuring precision and high-quality results.

2. Ask others

You can also ask your family, friends, or even your colleagues for multiple suggestions. Specifically, ask your car enthusiast friends as they will give you quality suggestions because of their experience in getting their car seats reupholstered. Take all the suggestions into consideration, and choose according to your own preferences and budget.

3. Match details

Keep in mind your car’s model and year and also the type of upholstery that you want to apply to your car seats. As different car shops work with different types of cars and upholstery materials, you have to keep these things in mind. Also, remember specific requests for the upholstery of your car seats.

4. Make a visit to different shops

After finding various car upholstery shops, visit them on a single day or on different occasions according to your work schedule. Keep your different needs in mind that you want to get done, and consult the professionals for unique preferences in the type of fabric and designs for the reupholstering process.

5. Ask for complete details

As you’re visiting various upholstery shops, remember to ask them for the complete details related to the reupholstering process. If you have additional requests, ask them the cost related to those requests and after you’re familiar with all the details, make a well-informed decision in choosing the most suitable shop for getting your car seats reupholstered.

6. Discuss Design and Material

You should also consult professionals in order to choose the correct design and materials for your car seats. When you’re choosing the design and materials for the reupholstering, remember to consider different factors i.e., durability and comfort, etc.

7. Select the time

After choosing the shop for the reupholstering of your car seats, select a time after consulting with the shop when you and they both are available.

Decide and confirm the time required for the re-upholstering process and also ask them regarding any additional efforts that need to be made.

8. Prepare Your Car

Before taking it to the shop, clean your car’s interior and take out your personal belongings. Make sure that the professionals can easily take out the seats from your car for reupholstering.

9. Drop Off Your Car

As the preparation is complete, drop off the car at the shop. Let them know if you have any personal preference or any specific instructions in terms of the reupholstering process.

10. Receive Updates

If the re-upholstering process exceeds the decided time limit, remember to inquire them regarding the current updates on the process.

This will reduce your worries related to the safety of your car seats.

11. Check the finished work

Remember to make a final check on the car seats after the re-upholstering process is complete. Check for any type of flaws or mistakes in order to make sure that the job is well done before taking your car back home.

How Much Does Professional Car Reupholstery Cost?

When talking about professional reupholstering, it can cost you from $200 to $1,000 or even more, depending on how complex the job is and what type of materials you’re working with.


In conclusion, I have explained all the details related to the methods for reupholstering your car seats and also the average cost for each method. All the methods have been explained thoroughly to avoid any kind of misunderstanding.

Here is a quick review of the methods:

  1. DIY Reupholstering: Get rid of the existing upholstery and padding if it is worn out and get it replaced with the new one, clean the seat’s frame to make it fresh for work, use a scissor for cutting the fabric and a needle with heavy duty thread to attach the fabric with the seat, you can also secure the seat with hog rings, reassemble the seat, check the final results by sitting on it.
  2. Reupholstering with Small Machines: The beginning steps are the same as those of the DIY reupholstering. The focus is shifted to the portable sewing machine in order to ensure precision and high-quality work.
  3. Reupholstering by Professionals: Find different jobs either by searching yourself or by different recommendations, consult various experts to decide the details and the cost for the process, and drop off your car at the shop, if the time exceeds ask for updates and check the seats one last time after the reupholstering is complete to ensure precise results.

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Aleksy Kazmer

Aleksy is a full-time blogger born and raised in Warsaw. After earning a degree in MS English from Oxford University, he began utilizing his skills as a content writer to express what he’s most passionate about. Whether it's home improvement, decor, furniture, cleaning products, or DIY projects. Aleksy has a natural curiosity to pursue hidden tips and share them with readers.