Author Topic: Making my car more comfortable  (Read 1969 times)

ChairmanKaga

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Making my car more comfortable
« on: August 04, 2016, 03:12:12 PM »
Full disclosure - we don't like our 2008 CRV. We got it 4 years ago from my MIL just before our second kid arrived. I had a 2007 base Fit 5-speed, but realized that with two rear-facing seats in the back I simply could NOT safely operate the vehicle, nor could my wife ride in the front passenger seat (we're both tall-ish). The MIL gave us a solid deal on her CRV, only costing us a couple thousand after selling the Fit.
But as I said, we don't like it. The fuel economy is mediocre (21.9 MPG cumulative), it's slow, it's really bigger than we need especially now that the girls are in front facing seats, and most significantly it's massively uncomfortable. Go to any Honda or CRV owners' forum and you'll read thread after thread regarding the woeful ergonomics of the seats. They are flat, wide, have almost no bolstering and very little lumbar support. My MIL also had an aftermarket leather cover kit installed (Roadwire), and the material is quite stiff and unyielding. Living in far south Austin and working downtown, my 12-mile one-way commute can easily take an hour. I have two herniated discs as well as chronic sciatica, and by the time I arrive I'm in real pain.
I've tried everything that's financially prudent - lumbar pads, gel cushion, even the mail order NYC taxicab beads. I've explored the possibility of a salvage yard swap with an Acura TL or RDX, but the CRV has a unique mounting foot as well as a funky offset that would make a swap impossible, or at least prohibitively expensive.
I was wondering if maybe an upholstery shop could reshape my seat foam, or even modify a salvaged Acura seat cover and pads to fit the CRVs?
Any other suggestions? Because every time I ride in my coworkers 2006 Volvo V70, I start thinking of plans to somehow trade the Honda for a Swedish wagon. Have you sat in one of those? Any year. The seats are SUBLIME. And when you spend 2 hours a day sitting, the seats MATTER.

Choices

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Re: Making my car more comfortable
« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2016, 06:20:29 PM »
It sounds like you hate the whole car, not just the seat. You don't have to justify it to us, just to your SO. Are you afraid of hurting your MIL's feelings?

If you get a good deal on another used car, you might break even on cost and end up with more comfort and better mileage.

whodidntante

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Re: Making my car more comfortable
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2016, 09:56:05 PM »
Time for a new car. Avoid the accord also.  My girlfriend had to have her seats altered just to live with hers.  My old Civic was also torturous.

Yes, a good shop can do whatever you want to those seats including fabricating new ones to your specs. But the car you own isn't worth that. Sell and get something you like as is.

ChairmanKaga

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Re: Making my car more comfortable
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2016, 12:59:55 PM »
Well, I tried to find a replacement that was more or less equal value but my wife just was not comfortable taking on an "unknown commodity" when the CRV comes from a reliable original owner (her mom, natch) with LOW miles. I brought home a 2008 Acura TL, a 2005 Lexus IS300, a 2008 Nissan Maxima, a 2009 Mazda6 for extended test drives... none met with approval for one or varied reasons. I even said I'd consider an Accord (although those seats aren't much better than the CRV) or a Camry. I do think she's more worried about upsetting her mom than I am. Take the most hardcore person on this site and double their fervor. That's her position on spending money on oneself. There's a chance we'd be shunned for life if we abandoned the great deal she gave us. My wife is also stubbornly practical and just doesn't want to deviate from a plan that makes sense to her. That plan includes keeping this CRV until 2035, at which time we will be able to just own a single car, or maybe not at all (she's all about the Google model of shared ownership of autonomous vehicles). And while I agree that the hierarchy of needs should place notions like "how uncomfortable are you, really, what with your air conditioning and Alpine sound system" low on the list...
I dunno. I didn't want this car, but I was given no choice on the transaction. I came home one day and was handed the keys. Here's your new car. Be a man about it.
Yes. I am slightly resentful although I no longer make an issue of it. 

Choices

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Re: Making my car more comfortable
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2016, 02:05:18 PM »
Well, I tried to find a replacement that was more or less equal value but my wife just was not comfortable taking on an "unknown commodity" when the CRV comes from a reliable original owner (her mom, natch) with LOW miles. I brought home a 2008 Acura TL, a 2005 Lexus IS300, a 2008 Nissan Maxima, a 2009 Mazda6 for extended test drives... none met with approval for one or varied reasons. I even said I'd consider an Accord (although those seats aren't much better than the CRV) or a Camry. I do think she's more worried about upsetting her mom than I am. Take the most hardcore person on this site and double their fervor. That's her position on spending money on oneself. There's a chance we'd be shunned for life if we abandoned the great deal she gave us. My wife is also stubbornly practical and just doesn't want to deviate from a plan that makes sense to her. That plan includes keeping this CRV until 2035, at which time we will be able to just own a single car, or maybe not at all (she's all about the Google model of shared ownership of autonomous vehicles). And while I agree that the hierarchy of needs should place notions like "how uncomfortable are you, really, what with your air conditioning and Alpine sound system" low on the list...
I dunno. I didn't want this car, but I was given no choice on the transaction. I came home one day and was handed the keys. Here's your new car. Be a man about it.
Yes. I am slightly resentful although I no longer make an issue of it.

What does your wife drive? Can you two trade cars?

LouLou

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Re: Making my car more comfortable
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2016, 02:35:18 PM »
Living in far south Austin and working downtown, my 12-mile one-way commute can easily take an hour. I have two herniated discs as well as chronic sciatica, and by the time I arrive I'm in real pain.

This is a major problem.  You have serious back issues, and you should not be spending any length of time in an uncomfortable seat.  You have already tried low cost solutions - you just need a different vehicle.  Full stop.  Do not end up with major health issues/costs because you got a deal on a car you don't want.  It's not a deal if you need physical therapy or more a few years from now.  I think getting a different car is really  more of a need than a want in your case.

I agree that your wife can drive the CRV if she does not want to hurt her mother's feelings.

TrMama

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Re: Making my car more comfortable
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2016, 03:02:29 PM »
So your wife wants you to continue to drive a car that hurts your already injured back so as not to offend her mother? Really?

Forget the car, it's time for a new wife.

pbkmaine

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Re: Making my car more comfortable
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2016, 05:25:13 PM »
Tell your wife you are not willing to be in pain in order to spare her an uncomfortable conversation with her mother. Then go get a car that fits you comfortably.