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DIY Installation of WAECO MagicComfort MSH601 Retrofit Insert Seat Heater


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#1 nodrogs

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 04:05 PM

DIY Installation of WAECO MagicComfort MSH601 Retrofit Insert Seat Heater

 

Having got fed up with the unreliable and ugly heated seat covers, I recently decided to invest in a proper retrofit seat heater that requires some dismantling of the seat and seat cover.  The pack I got is only for the driver’s seat, but you can also get packs for both front seats and also the rear seats.

 

The pack comes with Fitting Instructions, 2 heating elements (one for the backrest and one for the seat base), extra double sided tape, wiring harness, switch and control box.  It all seems pretty good quality stuff.  Cost me £30 all in.

 

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Tools

 

Screw Drivers

Pliers

Wire Cutters

Drill with 20mm drill bit (I 13mm bit followed by a 16mm wood bit! and then a file)

Soldering iron/crimping tool (which ever you prefer to join wires)

Flexible copper wire

Cable Ties

Flexible Wire Piping/Conduit (pre-slit)

Insulating Tapes

Replacement trim clips


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#2 nodrogs

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 04:06 PM

Back Rest Heater

 

Fitting the heating pad in the back rest is the easier of the two.  To begin with, remove the back cover from the seat.  A good hard pull on the very bottom of the edge should release the clips (these will likely need to be replaced).

 

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With the back off the seat, undo the long white plastic clips around the inside – this will loosen the seat back cover.  There are two extra round clips about a third of the way up if I recall.

 

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Push the bottom part through the gap between the seat back and base.  You’ll need to push the seat back flat and upright again to suit as you work.  Work it through until the cover is loose enough to be able to get your hand between the cover and the sponge.

 

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The back element is just the right length to go tight up against the first ridge on the seat back.  Double sided tape is prefixed to the element.  Carefully slide the element up between the cover and sponge and keep working it upwards until you believe the top edge is tight against the first ridge.  Remove the double sided tape once in place and adjust the element so it’s properly fitted.

 

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Push the bottom edge of the cover back through the gap between the seat back and base.  I was able to feed the cable for the cover through a hole on the driver’s side alongside a cable that I assume is for the side airbag.

 

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#3 nodrogs

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 04:07 PM

Seat Base Heater

 

The seat base is much more time consuming and trickier.  To being, I pushed the seat fully forward and adjusted the height as high as it would go.  Looking underneath from the back, you will see 2 round clips holding up some material.  The material needs to be removed from these clips.  I didn’t find this easily possible to just ended up ripping the material off with a view to making new holes and fixings (its really just for cosmetics).  These upholstery clips by the way are quite hard to remove without the right tools, see later for my improvised cutter!

 

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With the forward edge of the material loosened, lift it back up and you’ll see another long white clip at the back that needs to be pulled off.  Once off, you’ll start to see the seat base cushion.

 

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You’ll need to remove the plastic side of the seat, which is fairly easy.  Pop off the cover on the seat height adjustment.  Loosen the 2 bolts and remove the handle.

 

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This will reveal a screw that needs to be removed.  There is another screw at the back of the cover that also needs to be undone.  Working from the front end of the cover, pop it off the seat base.  I didn’t remove it fully initially but ended up taking it right off.  The handle for the seat back angle adjustment just pulls off to allow the cover to be removed.  With the cover removed, you’ll see another long white clip on the side of the base cushion that needs to be removed.

 

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#4 nodrogs

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 04:07 PM

Then move to the underside at the front of the seat.  There are 3 more clips that need to be released.

 

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At this stage, the 3 sides of the seat cover will be loosened (you don’t need to undo the forth side along the centre console).  As you start to work it off the seat cushion, you will see how the cover is connected to the cushion by a series of the aforementioned upholstery clips.  These clips need to be removed as you work the seat cover off.  I didn’t have any specific tools to do this, so I improvised (my wire cutters are pretty blunt and these clips are quite hard).

 

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Once you have the upholstery clips removed along the side, you’ll see that the seat base ridges are also fastened to the base cushion.  The clips along here also need to be removed.

 

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Now you’ll have the cover removed enough to be able to position the base element.  You’ll see that the element already has a cutout for the back ridge.  However, it’s not quite wide enough for the accord seat and there’s no cuttout for the forward ridge.   I positioned the element over the base so that the forward ridge was between two wires.  Also, make sure that the side that’s towards the centre of the car can be freely cut (i.e. the wire bends at the other side).  This will be clearer when you position the element and examine the heating wires.

 

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To fit the accord, I just used a sharp stanely knife to cut the sponge carefully between the wires as necessary.  I also widened the precut opening to make it wider.  I was careful not to go too close to the heating wires when cutting, and left some sponge around the wires for protection.

 

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The kit comes with some extra double sided tape, which I positioned as shown in the photos.  Then feed the wire down between the back and the base.

 

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Once ready, stick the pad to the seat base.  Then, start to refit the cover.  Because I’ve no experience with seat upholstery, and no tools etc., I just used some good quality cable ties to refix the cover to the sponge, using the existing clip positions.  After trimming the ties, I positioned the fastener around so that it can’t damage the seat cover.

 

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#5 nodrogs

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 04:08 PM

Wiring

Once the cover is back on, you can start wiring (to be honest I actually wired it in before refitting the cover to make sure it was working ok!). As I just fitted the driver’s side, I was happy enough to take the power from the 12V socket (think it draws around 50W, the socket is rated to 120W).  If you are to fit the passenger side as well then probably best to take the power from elsewhere.

 

There are two power leads, one from your main power source (intended to be the battery), and one to connect to a switchable power source (i.e. something like the 12V socket that only comes on when the ignition is turned on).  In my case, I just wired both unto the positive of the 12V socket and the negative to the negative on the socket.  I used soldered connections and some flexible protective piping.

 

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It’s probably easier to remove the whole centre console and wire it that way. Initially, I was going to fit the switch on the blank beside the VSA button, but the blank is too small.  So I ended up fitting the switch on the trim under the handbrake (see later).

 

Centre Console Removal

Unscrew the gearstick knob, then remove the trim around the gearstick (good pull on forward and back, its just clipped on).  Remove the bin from beside the cigarette lighter.  Remove the screws (there are 4 as far as I remember).  Then remove the whole part and disconnect the bulb and cigarette lighter.

To remove the cupholder and trim, again, its just clipped on so just work with it.

 

Then, remove the rubber mat in the centre console storage, and unscrew the 2 large screws and the small screw holding the 12V socket.  There are 2 further screws just in front of the handbrake, undo these as well.  Then unclip the 12V socket and wire.  You should then be able to work the centre console out.

 

Using a piece of flexible copper wire, I was able to make a fish line down under the carpet to under the seat.  The carpet is pretty tightly fitted.  The photo shows where I eventually got the other end with a bit of working around, just beside the heater vent.

 

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When trying to get the cable through under the carpet, don’t do as I did and try and pull cable and plug through, it’s just too tight and I ended up pulling the plug off the wire!  Probably better to cut the wire at a convenient point and then join it back together.

 

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Once you’ve the cable through under the seat it’s just a matter of connecting everything up and putting the car back together again!  I found there is a good space under the storage bin to push the control boxes and fuses out of the way.  I then put the various exposed cables in flexible piping and then secured them as necessary.  It’s especially important to take care with the cable going under the carpet as it sits beside the handbrake and could be prone to getting nipped by it.

 

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After testing it for a few days now I am really delighted with the seat warmer.  It takes about 5 minutes to get fully warmed up, probably a little longer than the seat cover ones.  Once fully warmed it is very noticeable, even on the low setting.

 

My only gripe is that the “illuminated” switch is lit all the time when the ignition is on, even if the heater is not on.  I’d have preferred a nice back lit one with the red LED coming on when the heater is on but this is no big deal.

 

For reference (and from memory), the following is what cables connect to which (I highly recommend you note down all cables and connections before starting anything as they may differ from this).

 

Switch has three wires, which have been pre-numbered.  The switch itself has 3 small numbers beside the pins.  Wire I goes to pin 1, wire O goes to pin 2, and wire II goes to pin 3.

 

The heater element harness wire that goes under the carpet, connects into a white block supplying the individual elements:

Blue goes to Orange

Brown goes to Black

White goes to Green


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#6 Jon_G

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 04:58 PM

Nice!

 

Re: your gripe with the illuminated switch lighting up all the time... this must be due to the power in and power out being the wrong way round.



#7 F6HAD

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 05:12 PM

Hey this is brilliant.. I wouldn't mind adding this to the wife's FRV.. it's the only thing it's missing really.


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#8 brett

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 05:56 PM

Great write up and DIY Steven
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#9 Stevearcade

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 08:00 PM

Great DIY mate. Superb!


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#10 DJX1Y

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 09:54 PM

Fantastic job and great step by step instructions

Watch out west coast customs.

Great job mate

#11 Herdy

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Posted 02 October 2016 - 09:13 PM

Reviving an old post but thanks a lot for this write up, I fitted one of these kits today and it was a brilliant help. Again, thank you very much.