Leather seat conditioner?

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Apowers

Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2016
Messages
39
Car
C63 507
What is everyone using to condition the leather seats to stop when from cracking? Side bolsters on c63 are showing small cracks due to loads of short trips in the car
 
Conditioners are pointless on modern automotive leathers as they all coated and so impervious. Using conditioners can create a surface film that attracts grit and dirt.
If you truly have cracks in the bolster then the leather coating is damaged and no amount of conditioners will help. If they are just creases filled with dirt, then a good, deep clean will reduce their appearance. Any proprietary cleaner will do the job.

I used Gliptone products on my S203 after having the interior retrimmed in Nappa leather. The new leather wasn't coated and required very routine cleaning and conditioning. Gliptone worked really well and smelt great.
On the factory fitted Nappa leather in my W219 I used Dr. Leather wipes as that leather was coated. They worked well, left a nice smell but were expensive for what they were, paper towels monster with water and detergent.
On my Lexus I will do as instructed in the owner's handbook and clean the leather with a soft cloth moistened with 5% solution of wool detergent.
 
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I just use neutral baby wipes and then go over it with Dr Leather wipes, gives it a lovely leather smell as well :thumb:
 
Conditioners are pointless on modern automotive leathers as they all coated and so impervious. Using conditioners can create a surface film that attracts grit and dirt.
If you truly have cracks in the bolster then the leather coating is damaged and no amount of conditioners will help. If they are just creases filled with dirt, then a good, deep clean will reduce their appearance. Any proprietary cleaner will do the job.

I used Gliptone products on my S203 after having the interior retrimmed in Nappa leather. The new leather wasn't coated and required very routine cleaning and conditioning. Gliptone worked really well and smelt great.
On the factory fitted Nappa leather in my W219 I used Dr. Leather wipes as that leather was coated. They worked well, left a nice smell but were expensive for what they were, paper towels monster with water and detergent.
On my Lexus I will do as instructed in the owner's handbook and clean the leather with a soft cloth moistened with 5% solution of wool detergent.

This. It is NOT the leather that you would be treating rather the plastic coating that is applied to the leather. Baby Wipes are good as are most diluted PVC Cleaners.
 
Whitenemesis is quite correct here. Applying any sort of cream to nourish the coated leather is a waste of time and money and will in fact speed up the cracking process.
Residue of the cream sits in the leather grain, then add sweat and dirt and hey presto you have a lovely abrasive compound that over time opens up the grain into more noticable cracks.
The best method of treating automotive leather is to clean and protect. You must, and i mean must!, vacuum the leather seat well every week, then wipe the leather down with a reputable leather cleaner or warm water and clean cloths.
Then when fully dried apply a leather protector, the milk balms that dry to a natural finish are the best ones to use. Protect your leather at least 4 times a year, more so in the summer months when you sweat more.
I use leather automotive products from LTT of Harrogate, expensive but very good. If in doubt speak to one of their experts they will allways help you.
 
I also use the Cliptone leather conditioner, but I can't honestly say it smell is anything like leather ;)
 
This. It is NOT the leather that you would be treating rather the plastic coating that is applied to the leather. Baby Wipes are good as are most diluted PVC Cleaners.

If Baby wipes are good enough for their delicate bottoms then they should be ok on the seats! :thumb::bannana:
 
If Baby wipes are good enough for their delicate bottoms then they should be ok on the seats! :thumb::bannana:
You'd think so ... but I carry baby wipes in the tool kits for my old cars, as they get grease, oil, soot and grime off your hands like nothing else I know. Do they actually remove the "wanted" oils from leather?
 
Don't think so as it doesn't dry out my hands compared to other moist hand wipes, especially the HD wipes.
 
You'd think so ... but I carry baby wipes in the tool kits for my old cars, as they get grease, oil, soot and grime off your hands like nothing else I know. Do they actually remove the "wanted" oils from leather?

Leather is coated and sealed with vinyl paint, there would have to be a break in the surface for "wanted" oils to be removed.

Russ
 
I would steer clear of any "creams" as all they do is sit on the surface and smell nice.

The best product I've used so far is called leatherique. Very lengthy process that must be done on a baking hot day, or you need to leave a heater in the car all day/night, but its's the only product I've found that appears to give coated leather a permanent flexibility and softness.

I think the coating is semi-permeable, i.e. it isn't 100% waterproof or it doesn't seem to be anyway. The right product will get through and condition the leather in my experience.
 
Conditioners are pointless on modern automotive leathers as they all coated and so impervious. Using conditioners can create a surface film that attracts grit and dirt.
If you truly have cracks in the bolster then the leather coating is damaged and no amount of conditioners will help. If they are just creases filled with dirt, then a good, deep clean will reduce their appearance. Any proprietary cleaner will do the job.

I used Gliptone products on my S203 after having the interior retrimmed in Nappa leather. The new leather wasn't coated and required very routine cleaning and conditioning. Gliptone worked really well and smelt great.
On the factory fitted Nappa leather in my W219 I used Dr. Leather wipes as that leather was coated. They worked well, left a nice smell but were expensive for what they were, paper towels monster with water and detergent.
On my Lexus I will do as instructed in the owner's handbook and clean the leather with a soft cloth moistened with 5% solution of wool detergent.

Thanks, what will help with the cracking then?
 
While i get the leather has a coated surface, I would not go as far as to say that conditioners are pointless. Here in Texas , it gets mighty hot in the summer and the experienced leather interiors where the top of the rear seats will become as hard as cardboard after 5 or 6 summers.

I've applied Lexol and Leatherique to dried out seats and was able to bring them back.

It's worth noting that any coating will be micro thin and there is a difference between the leather used in GM and Ford products, which is basically bonded leather with a coating and quality leather used in Mercedes Benz and BMW's.
 
Thanks, what will help with the cracking then?

A very thorough cleaning to remove all the ingrained dirt, any proprietary cleaner will work as will water and detergent.
Then the cracked areas will need to be repaired by respraying with something like Liquid Leather's Scuff Master.
Or just get the bolster panel replaced by an upholsterer.
 

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