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1963 Riviera power seat stuck


kootenai
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Recently I had a mechanic work on my non-functioning seat. He had it in and out several times, this involved cleaning and lubricating all the parts, as well as repeated testing. The up & down function works well, however the forward-reverse mode made funny noises then jammed in position. I think the track and gear are worn or out of alignment. Can this be fixed, or should I look for another seat? Do any other Buicks share the same parts? Thanks for any help or ideas.

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Hi,

Was the seat in or out of the car when tested? Were the tracks cleaned and lubed? Are the black nylon/plastic guides still present in the passenger side tracks? It would be very unusual for components in the power seat to "wear out" as the seats never receive much use. Usually just a matter of cleaning and lube and then proper installation so the tracks do not bind. Good luck,

Tom Mooney

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I agree with Tom, these things don't really wear out. The original factory lithium grease on my tracks had turned hard as a rock. It prevented the small gear from turning that runs the seat forward and back. I took the drive cable off of the track and I could see that the end of the cable turned when I activated the switch.

So I sprayed solvent into the little drive gear housing to dissolve the old grease. The grease inside the sliding parts of the track was also hard. I cleaned that up and put a light coating of new grease on them. I worked the drive gear manually with a small screwdriver. Eventually it loosened up. Then I squirted a dab of new grease in the gear housing and reassembled.

You can leave the seat off of the track assemble and test in the car. Connect a temporary ground wire if you do.

There is an exploded parts diagram in the shop manual that shows how the seat "transmission" comes apart. You need to take it apart, if you have not already, and clean all that, then lightly lube with some grease again. You will see the residue of the original factory grease to guide you where to put fresh grease after cleaning.

You can test operation of the transmission by leaving the drive cables off of the seat track connectors, just to confirm they are turning.

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Two other things to check:

  • Make sure there are no carpet or seat material fibers caught in the tracks.
  • Make sure you have a good ground for the track/motor assembly. I added a separate 16 gauge wire run up to the dashboard frame and my seat worked much better in all positions.

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  • 1 year later...

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