Reader Question: Seat Removal?

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Here’s the latest reader question, along with my reply!

Charlie asks: I have a 2016 Kia minivan and want to remove the second row to make more room for cargo (I use this van to haul things not people). But I can’t figure out how to remove them. They slide forward and back and you can fold them. But there isn’t a catch to remove them.

My reply: And there’s a reason for that!

Most seats are more than just seats. They are electronic devices, connected via wiring harnesses to the vehicle. The connections are necessary because Uncle – i.e., the government – which among other things mandates seat belt buzzers, which won’t work if the seat belt connector is disconnected. There are sometimes other umbilicals as well, as in the case of power-sliding/moving chairs.

The seats can be removed – but  the process entails disconnecting the wiring harnesses and then unbolting the seats/tracks, which may require a special socket or tool (e.g., a star-headed socket) and can be a real pain-in-the-rear.

I miss seats that just came out – and seatbelts that didn’t barrage you with buzzers and lights for not “buckling up.”

. . .

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  1. A bit off topic, but related to vehicle seats:

    I can’t stand how newer vehicles have tall headrests on rear seats, blocking visibility and making the vehicle feel more cramped. Whenever I get a rental car, the first thing I do is remove all rear headrests and put them aside, which instantly improves aesthetics.


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