Last post on Nov 26, 2012 at 3:10 PM
You are in the Subaru Legacy & Outback
What is this discussion about?
Subaru Outback, Interior, Sedan, Wagon
#2 of 11 Re: Subaru seats [billd12]
Oct 02, 2012 (9:26 am)
The power adjustable seat is, I believe, a ten-way setup, which means you can do quite a bit to adjust your ride height and angle. I find those two features to be the most useful when improving my comfort. Many folks talk about firmness and lumbar support as major issues for them, but those things have never caused me problems as long as I get the height, angle, and head rest set properly. Even the manual adjustable seat has the height adjustment feature for the driver.
The electronic controls are highly intuitive. Just grab the finger-contoured adjuster on the forward side of the seat, and pull up (or push down) to the height you want, then tilt forward or back as you like. I find that fairly high, with a tilt toward the steering wheel, works for me. Also, the best setting for those adjustments may not be what you initially think is the most comfortable.
Also, if you carry a wallet or anything in your back pocket while you drive.... stop doing that! Your back and hip both will thank you! The more bolstering the seat has, the more a wallet impacts me.
Finally, and this moves away from cars altogether, if your back is bothering you on a regular basis now, try moving away from sitting for long periods at your job (or at home). Years ago (2006), I started using a ball chair ("Sit-A-Round" from a company called Jobri, but I don't think they make that style any more) for a short time and my back started feeling better after the initial adjustment/strengthening period. After a couple months of that, I went to a standing workstation (with a stool for when I want to sit) and haven't had a lick of back issues since then.
The biggest benefit I have found, other than less fatigue and no back pain, is that my body is far more tolerant of car trips now. A six or seven hour trip to Anchorage was torture for me in the past, whereas now I can make the trip in comfort, or minimal discomfort by the end, and am fully recovered within only a short time (overnight sleep, etc).
#3 of 11 Re: Subaru seats [xwesx]
Oct 02, 2012 (9:43 am)
I move the wallet for the front pocket when I drive. Especially with well bolstered seats.
#4 of 11 Re: Subaru seats [xwesx]
Oct 03, 2012 (6:15 pm)
thanks for the reply. I'm not sure if this is just a matter of adjusting to a new seat over time, and I long ago stopped sitting on my wallet. It just seems that the coincidence of a new car and these sudden back and leg issues is odd. I even wonder if the problem is maybe not the seats but some other aspect of car. I've noticed a steady vibration, especially while idling, that I've not noticed in other cars I've had. Would the all wheel drive cause this?
#5 of 11 Re: Subaru seats [billd12]
Oct 04, 2012 (9:30 am)
It is probably not coincidence; it always takes the body a while to adjust to a different car... though I prefer when it is not a painful transition!
I don't think AWD would, by itself, result in increased vibration. The engine does vibrate more at idle than an inline because it is naturally balanced (horizontally opposed cylinders) rather than using a weighted balancing system. I haven't noticed increased vibration at speed, though, which I would think is where most drivers spend their time. That said, I also don't deal with a crawl-style commute. If you do, maybe it is impacting you.
With no small amount of irony, I tweaked my back on Tuesday night. I am now reminded why I went through so much effort to reduce/eliminate my back pain when it was chronic! There's nothing worse.
#6 of 11 Re: Subaru seats [xwesx]
Oct 04, 2012 (6:28 pm)
thanks again for the input. I do spend a good deal of time in stop and go traffic. In fact, today I did quite a bit of it and I'm having more noticable back and leg issues. Also, I'm realizing that the angle of the seat cushion, which isn't fully adjustable (only the front thigh support actually adjusts) is planting my butt so deep into the seat that the circulation to my legs is affected - and my hips. Sad to say but I'm getting close to giving up on the subie. I hate to take another financial hit but certainly can't afford permanent physical damage. I just wish that problems like this were more widely circulated.
#7 of 11 Re: Subaru seats [billd12]
Oct 05, 2012 (6:39 am)
I can (almost) feel your actual pain. I'm 64 and when I got my 2010 Legacy the seat really hurt my lower back. To the point that we started making more frequent stops on road trips. As the car has over 60,000 miles now we have put a lot of road miles on it. I found a small ish lumbar support in a thrift store and tried it and it help a lot. Prior to that I had kept a rolled up towel positioned at just the right height.
A few weeks ago we got my wife a 2013 OB and the seats are quantifiably BETTER. The lumbar support on the driver's side is close enough to the one in my old "work" car-Mercury Grand Marquis and slightly better than my wife's '04 Lexus RX (traded on the OB). On a recent 2400 mile road trip I left the padded thingy home and was well pleased. Even when I was in the pax seat I noticed no problems.
I'm so impressed with the difference in ride and handling; even over the 2012!
#8 of 11 Re: Subaru seats [billd12]
Oct 05, 2012 (1:23 pm)
I just wish that problems like this were more widely circulated.
Unfortunately, issues of comfort vary widely from person to person. When an issue is not universal, it doesn't tend to circulate widely. Hopefully you are able to arrive at an agreeable solution, without the financial hit!
#9 of 11 Subaru Outback Passenger Seat height
Nov 23, 2012 (3:15 pm)
I have a 2013 Outback Limited. The passenger seat is too low for my wife and we have not found a comfortable seat cushion for her. Does anyone know if there is a way to raise the seat height i.e. with shims or adjustment?
#10 of 11 Re: Subaru Outback Passenger Seat height [jetpilot767]
Nov 26, 2012 (9:09 am)
I wanted to do the same for our Forester but the seat track appears to be riveted on rather than screwed on.
#11 of 11 Re: Subaru Outback Passenger Seat height [ateixeira]
Nov 26, 2012 (3:10 pm)
Yeah, it's awkward. I probably wouldn't ever notice it if the driver seat did not adjust upward so nicely! From what I can see, the only point the height could be adjusted is at the floor, where the seat track bolts to the vehicle's body pan. But, the bolts are not horizontal (in the front at least); they bolt at an angle. If you shimmed it, it would bring the whole assembly up and forward. The only practical way to raise it would be to fabricate a lift that maintained the fore/aft positioning to bring it up (and not lose strength/integrity in the structure in the event of a crash).
And, that brings me to the point where I wasn't bothered enough by it to pursue a fix.