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'03 STS (RIP), '89 Eldorado, '13 Malibu, '89 Grand Wagoneer
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2,191 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello Everyone,

Well... it turns out that my "perfect" Cadillac is not so perfect. It has actually been a little chilly in the northeast and I went to turn on my seat heater and well... no dice.

The passenger seat and both the rear seat heaters work just fine, and that's all well and good except I don't sit in any of those seats! The seat heater button lights up on the console and I hear a click. It seems to start warming up for just a second or so and then it cuts out. I will then hear intermittent clicking, it sounds like it is coming from the dash but very well could be coming from under the seat. When I put it in the "LO" setting it seems to last longer before clicking out, albeit marginally.

I have already pulled the back seat to check the fuse which I have found to be fine. I work in IT so I am fairly handy when it comes to wiring and electronics as well as a solid foundation with most things mechanical.

Any help you could lend would be most appreciated. I know that if I took the car to a Cadillac dealer they would want to replace the whole damn seat and charge me way too much to do so. My only other option would be to buy an aftermarket setup. I have seen aftermarket kits with heat and massage for around $250 but I would rather not spend that much money nor would I want to ruin my mint Caddie with some aftermarket switch on the console!

Is there an easy fix to this? Could I steal some parts from one of the other seats, especially the rear? Would it be more cost efficient to go to a junk yard? Winter's coming fast and I don't want my bum to be left in the cold!
 

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'98 STS (RIP @ 206,xxx miles)
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4,854 Posts
The most common failure is one or both of the heating (calrod) elements. Failure of the seat cushion element is the most common of the two. In operation, the heating elements are powered up in series.

Parts are available from your dealer or your favorite web-based OEM parts houses.

It is only necessary to remove the cushion and install the element to maintain the OEM operation and controls.

You could look on eBay for a Service Manual for your specific model / year and that would give you access to wiring diagrams to allow you to determine (with a VOM) which heating element has failed.
 

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Registered
'03 STS (RIP), '89 Eldorado, '13 Malibu, '89 Grand Wagoneer
Joined
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2,191 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I was under the impression that the elements were somehow built or sewn into the cushions themselves, or am I wrong?

If it's as easy as you say then all I would have to do is buy the actual elements, remove the covers, take the old ones out, put the new ones in and wire accordingly.. is that about right?

Do you have any idea how much the elements will run?

Thanks for the help!
 
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