Custom or upgraded upholstery for a classic car helps bring the aesthetic appeal of the vintage vehicle full circle. While the exterior of the car may look perfect, stains or worn out seats and floor carpeting can severely take away from the car’s value. Most upholstery today is made either of leather or cloth fabric. Both materials are fairly durable and easy to clean, but many vintage cars originally included far finer materials. Suede or velvet are both appropriate materials for seat covers in a classic car, and require more careful handling to repair or replace.

If the seats or floors of your vintage car are showing signs of damage, then you may need to get them replaced, either with classic or more modern materials. The following are several signs that your car’s upholstery may be in need of replacement.

  • Old stains. If stains have set into your car’s upholstery, there may be no way of getting rid of them. While small stains might be something that a car owner can live with, large stains will severely detract from the aesthetic value of the car. If there are stains on the seats or floor, you can try a few common household remedies for removing them.

If a stain is recent, use cold water to try and dilute the spilled substance and blot it with a rag. More stubborn stains may also be broken up by glass cleaner. The cleaner should not do any damage to the car, but it is wise to test before using copious amounts in an attempt to blot away the stain.

  • Dirty carpets. Time will eventually catch up to all things, and because a car’s carpets are so often in contact with dirty shoes, they will eventually build up dirt and begin to lose color. While dirty carpets can be brushed off and the dirt pounded out of them for a time, too much wear and tear will eventually damage them. If the carpet of your classic car is durable, however, and the dirt doesn’t appear to be hopelessly embedded, then a strong scrubbing with hot water and a stiff brush may be enough to clean it.
  • Faded upholstery. Sunlight and constant wear will leach the color from your upholstery, but it can occasionally be coaxed back with some ammonia. A mixture of one part water and one part ammonia, when worked into the carpeting, may brighten your seats and carpets. Make sure that the fabric is allowed to dry properly to prevent mold or mildew growth. If the colors are too faded for this method to be effective, then it is time to replace your upholstery.
  • Worn and frayed fabric: Too much traffic moving back and forth over seats and carpets will eventually wear away at the upholstery, especially if it is made of a more delicate material like suede or velvet. There is very little one can do to repair worn or frayed fabric, and replacing the material is often the only option.

For more information about upholstery repairs and replacement, contact All Glass and Upholstery today.