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Front Seat Issue

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Today when I went to my 2002 SC430, I noticed the plastic back of the drivers seat was askew, I pulled and it slid off in my hand and I could see

the inside of the back of the seat.

Now, nothing was broken and this car is garage kept and maintained the best way a type A anal retentive person can so I thought this was unusual.

I examined the back of the plastic part and saw two 'hooks' on the top and some plastic pieces on the bottom with holes drilled in them. With little effort I got the piece back on but the bottom is still loose.

Are screws supposed to attach the plastic piece to the seat? I looked and did not see any screws lying around.

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They're most likely plastic clips. The panel would have the male plastic clip, the seat would have the female plastic clip.

Can you remove the back panel on the passengers seat? Might give you an idea of what's "supposed" to be there.

OR, take some pics... I think i'll be able to figure it out.

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I did a little digging and found a PDF drawing here:

In fact, the post references the bottom two screws so it looks as if I was correct that two screws hold the back on.

Looks like I will have a fun Saturday...

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Ok, so I was able to fix it pretty quickly.

I studied the PDF scans from the post I attached earlier this week and first moved the drivers seat up as far as it would go and then knelt down for a closer look with the top retracted. I found a small black Philips screw underneath the seat which I realized must be the missing screw. I looked around but could not find another one so I went to my 'misc screws' glass jar and found an exact match except it was silver.

I then attached the screw the end of my screwdriver using scotch tape to secure it. I found a pen light I could jam up behind the seat. I contorted myself in such a manner that a circus acrobat would have been impressed and found (to my surprise) I was able to replace both screws within 10 minutes.

I decided to treat the back of both the passenger and drivers seat to a quick buff and when I went to the passenger side I noticed that seat back was loose. I took a look and found the passengers seat was missing a screw. I moved it up to see if it had fallen and could not find it so I once again found a match and replaced that screw in the same manner.

I think I know why the screws were missing - I read somewhere there was a TSB of some sort requiring the seats to be disassembled, the dealer I bought the car from told me the previous owner brought the car back for every TSB issued so my theory is the seats were worked on but the mechanic got lazy and did not replace these screws.

One thing I have noticed, the drivers seat is now quiet. Prior to the back coming off which led to me discovering the issue the seat was NOISY! The noise was akin to someone moving around constantly on a leather couch while wearing leather clothing. The noise was so annoying I really could not enjoy the car with the top up.

I had decided the noise was the back of the drivers seat rubbing the front of the (useless) back seat as I have the drivers seat pushed way back due to my 6'3" height. I placed a towel between the seat back and the back seat hoping that would remove the noise but it never did.

Now the car is quiet so that hard plastic back must have moved around just enough to make that annoying sound.

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  • 3 years later...

Wow, I have the same problem with my 2004. I am not as flexible as you, although have not tried it with the top down. Guess I'll give it another go tomorrow. A very small person with very small hands might have a chance.

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I had the same problem on my passenger side. Same screw was missing. Guess this must be a common problem. They must just shake loose with time. Good idea to anyone who's experiencing cabin noise to check and tighten these screws. It is a little tricky to get under the seat enough to line the screw up properly though. Took me some effort, for sure.

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