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How to Reupholster a Tractor Seat

A new tractor seat cover provides protection from the elements.
Behind Walls image by Alis from Fotolia.com

Tractors are often left outside and suffer damage from harsh weather conditions. A tractor seat is commonly a steel frame wrapped in a thick layer of foam and finished with vinyl covering. If the surface vinyl layer tears or rips, the foam is exposed and can retain water, damaging and rusting the steel frame. Learning how to reupholster your tractor seat before the damage gets to its steel core will save you time and money.

Detach the seat from the tractor, using a screwdriver to remove the screw from below the seat.

Tear the vinyl cover and the foam insides from the steel frame of the seat. Save the plastic/rubber edge of the seat for later. Remove all the pieces from the steel frame. It may be hard to get everything since the foam was glued on, but it’s necessary to make the new foam bond properly with the frame.

Remove rust and dirt from the steel frame of the seat, using a drill with a wire wheel.

Clean the frame thoroughly, using a damp cloth.

Cut the foam in the shape of the seat, using an electric knife or a hot wire. It is easier if you place the foam onto the steel frame and use it as a reference. But you may also outline the contour of the seat on the foam with a felt tip pen and then cut it.

Spray the entire surface of the steel frame with an upholstery spray adhesive and do the same with the bottom part of the foam. Leave it to dry for three minutes. This will allow you to move the foam a little bit if you place it incorrectly. Otherwise, the spray adhesive is so strong that the foam will instantly bond with the steel, making it impossible to move it.

Place the foam on the seat frame and press it firmly. Leave it to dry for 15 minutes. Use a hot wire tool if you think the shape of the foam must be slightly modified or trimmed to fit the frame perfectly.

Spray the surface of the foam and the inside surface of the vinyl fabric with adhesive. Place the vinyl on the foam, starting from the seating area, and press firmly. Work your way to the upper part of the seat and finally to the sides. Tighten the vinyl with your hands to avoid wrinkles as you’re laying it. On the corners, fold the vinyl into a corner shape and pull it over the corner of the seat.

Slide the plastic/rubber edge cover into the metal groove to put it back on the edges of your new seat. Although you glued the vinyl on the foam, this will assure that the edges of the covering will stay firmly in their place.

Things You'll Need:

  • Screwdriver
  • 2-inch thick high-density foam
  • Vinyl cloth seat cover
  • Drill with wire wheel
  • Electric knife or hot wire tool
  • Felt tip pen
  • Upholstery spray glue


If the plastic/rubber edge cover is also worn out or damaged, replace it with a new one.


  • Always wear durable gloves when working with an electric knife of a hot wire tool. Avoid inhaling spray adhesive.
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