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Cooled Seat Guide: What They Are, How They Work & More!

Cooled Seat Guide: What They Are, How They Work & More!

Cooled seats can help overcome the limitations of your car’s AC system. Driving around on cooled seats can feel more comfortable than a regular vehicle.

They’ve become pretty common in vehicles nowadays. Cooled seats offer a unique way to make your car feel more comfortable whenever it’s hot outside.

Heated seats use a heating element, underneath the seat cushion. Running electricity through the heating element causes it to heat up, warming up the seat.

Cooled seats work a little bit differently!

What Are Cooled Seats?

Obviously, cooled seats do the opposite of a seat heater. Putting a fan inside the seat makes it possible to circulate air around occupants. You’re able to make it more comfortable in the car without using its AC system as much!

Usually, cooled seats don’t use refrigeration at all. They simply blow air through the seat, increasing airflow in the car’s cabin.

Many cars use multiple fans to push enough air through, so you can really feel its effects.

Diffusing the air through layers of upholstery can help to remove contaminants. Some cars will use cooled seats that feature refrigerated air.

Refrigerated air pumps through a cooling element. Most of the time, they’ll put a cooling element in the seat itself. Some cars will use the cabin’s AC system, though.

Other cars don’t use refrigerated air at all. Instead, they use fans to increase air circulation, making it more comfortable.

How Do Cooled Seats Work?

Cooled seats work a little differently, depending on how they’re built. Some of them use a cooling element to refrigerate the air whenever you’re using them. Other seats don’t use any refrigeration technology while they’re being used.

Refrigerated air uses a closed-loop system to remove the heat from the environment. Compressing the air while it’s traveling through the loop can cause it to condense into a gas. When air condenses, it loses some of its heat energy.

The air passes through a refrigerant line while it’s going around in the closed-loop. As it passes through, the refrigerant absorbs its excess heat, lowering the air’s temperature.

Fans push the air through the seat’s upholstery once it’s done in the refrigerant lines. That’s when you’ll feel the cooling effects of this wonderful car upgrade!

Ventilated seats can also help keep you comfortable while you’re driving. But, they don’t use refrigeration. They simply boost air circulation within the car. By placing several fans within the seat, it’s possible to move a ton of air through them.

Typically, manufacturers put fans in the seat bottom. Some of them have begun to install fans in the backrest as well. Installing fans can make their impact even more noticeable.

Do Cooled Seats Use AC?

Like we mentioned, there are two different approaches to cooled seating technology. One of them would be installing a cooling element into the seat and connecting it to a fan system.

The other way you could solve this would be by installing more ventilation into the seats. Adding ventilation to them would make them way more breathable when you’re riding in the car. However, it doesn’t use any AC technology.

Refrigeration tends to produce a more noticeable effect than just ventilation. Using a cooled seat that’s got refrigeration could be a little more expensive, though.

You should consider how much you’ll spend maintaining them in your new car if you’d like to get one of them.

A ventilated seat isn’t going to cost as much to maintain in the long run, because they’ve got fewer moving pieces.

You may need to replace the refrigerant in your cooled seats if you’ve got a car with refrigerated air. Don’t try to use the seats without replacing their refrigerant. Otherwise, you could damage them.

Cars With Cooled Seats

Heated seats have been around for a little while longer than cooled seats. But, cooled seats have found their way into a ton of cars. If you’d like to have them in your next ride, check out some of these.

The Audi A4 has cooled seat options. So, you can get one of them and put cooled seats in it. Driving around in an Audi A4 is way more fun when you’ve got somewhere comfortable to sit.

The BMW 4, 5, 6, and 7 series all have cooled seat options. Picking the right BMW doesn’t mean you’ve got to make any sacrifices on your accessories. You can get the right one with exactly the types of seats you’d like.

A lot of Honda vehicles also have cooled seats. You could get an Odyssey with them, so you can make sure everyone feels comfortable on road trips. Traveling feels better when you’ve got plenty of legroom and cooled seats.

You could also get a GMC Sierra, and you’d have a truck with cooled seats. These have engines with enough power to say nearly anything you’d like to haul. Use one of them to make handling work a lot easier. Or, you might like how you’re able to help friends whenever they are moving.

The Nissan Maxima also features cooled seats on select models. Speak to your local dealer about them if you’d like to get one with cooled seat technology. They’ll be able to help you find one that’s going to meet all your needs.

You could even drive on Toyota 4Runner while enjoying the benefits of a cooled seat. If you’ve got off-road ambitions, getting behind the wheel of this would be an amazing way to achieve them.

Benefits of Cooled Seats

Cooled seats have a ton of benefits. Sometimes, it’s not easy to get comfortable whenever you’re driving. A set of cooled seats would make it easy to lower the temperature if you’re feeling hot while you’re on the road.

Refrigerated seats produce even colder air than ventilated ones. They’re able to reduce the temperature inside the car a lot faster.

However, you’ve got to keep their maintenance costs in mind. You could end up spending a ton of money maintaining them if you’re not careful.

Always read the owner’s manual if you’ve got a car with cool seats. By maintaining them well, you will avoid a lot of unnecessary expenses.

If you’ve ever felt hot while driving, you would love how it feels to use its cooled seats. They are able to blow cold air directly onto you at a moment’s notice. That way, when it gets warm, you don’t have to wait.

Just turn them on, and they’ll make sure you feel way more comfortable. It won’t even take them long at all.

Plus, on top of that, it’s usually not as expensive to use them. Using the car’s air conditioner tends to have an impact on its fuel economy. Reducing how much you’re using the air conditioner could help you spend less money on gas by the end of the month.

Since they’re keeping you comfortable, cooled seats could reduce your AC usage. That’s how they can help you save money on fuel expenses each month.

Ventilated Seats vs Cooled Seats

If you’d like to get cooled seats, you’ve got to know which ones you’d like the best. Most of the time, we are able to break them down into two separate groups.

Ventilated seats don’t use refrigeration whenever you’ve got them on. They simply blow air through the seat’s upholstery to help cool you down. Increasing the car’s air circulation can have a huge impact on how comfortable it feels to sit inside of it.

However, ventilated seats don’t perform as well as other ones. Some cooled seats have refrigerant installed inside of them.

These actually pump air through a cooling element. That’s why they’ve got much colder air blowing out of the seat.

Getting a seat with a cooling element would be the best way to make your car feel more comfortable. A ventilated seat isn’t a bad idea. But, it’s not going to have as much of an impact as another one.

Always pay attention whenever you’re comparing different options. Make sure you are going to get the one that’s got what you’d like to have in your car. A cooling element would help the seat control the car’s climate a lot more than just a couple of fans. 

Are Cooled Seats Worth It?

The main benefit of cooled seats would be getting to control your car’s climate better. Spending a ton on cooled seats wouldn’t make a pot of sense if you’re already comfortable while you’re in the car.

However, if you felt uncomfortable while in the car, they might be a good deal. You could buy some of them to lower the car’s temperature whenever you’re on the way to work. That way, you wouldn’t feel so uncomfortable as you’re traveling.

A lot of manufacturers will let you request cooled seats if you’re ordering something new. Sometimes, it’s better if you’re able to request them from the manufacturers directly.

They’ll give you the best deal they’ve got if you’re able to ask them ahead of time.

Can You Add Aftermarket Cooled Seats?

It’s possible to add cooled seats to your car by using aftermarket parts. You’ve just got to find ones that will fit in your car.

Look at the dimensions inside of your owner’s manual to figure out what’s going to fit. Then, you could hire someone else to install them for you. Or, you could try to figure out how to do it all on your own.

Usually, you will need to connect the seat’s electrical components to your car. Most of them don’t have a way to generate power internally. So, they’ve got to use the car’s electricity to work.

Compare sizes at different vendors if you’re looking to buy aftermarket parts. That’s going to be the easiest way for you to determine which ones have the best options.

Connecting ventilated seats to your car tends to be easier than one with a cooling element. They’ve got more electrical components, so they’re a little more intricate.

Either way, you should be able to hire someone else to help you install them. A qualified technician would be able to put them in your car within just a few moments.

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Zach Reed

Hi, I'm the founder of! Having owned a wide variety of vehicles in my life, I was astounded at how hard it can be to find answers to common automotive questions. Rather than sit idly, I decided to create this website to help others!