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  1. #51
    Guest

    To everyone who is having /

    To everyone who is having / has had horrible back pain caused by the Prius' driver seat: I have a partial solution that involves padding the driver seat with foam blocks and wedges.

    I discovered that, despite the nicely curved contour of the driver seat, the actual foam inside the seat does NOT follow the contour of the fabric. Instead, the fabric is stretched so tightly that it just looks like foam is there underneath it, as one would expect. Instead, it is just air, and the foam itself is much further below (I use "much" as a relative term). Clearly, they want us to provide our own foam to complete our seats, which they can do because they've already deceived us into buying the car.

    I have been doing the following for the past several weeks, and it has made a noticeable improvement in how my back feels after driving the Prius (this is after several years of horrible back pain from the anti-ergonomically designed Prius driver seat):

    One of the most important pieces of foam is a foam pad, to be placed on the seat. I found the foam used in the Prius seats to be very cheap (examining the actual foam itself, the air pockets are not uniform) and uncomfortably hard; but put a nice, high-quality foam pad on the seat and you will feel much better. Note that if you are tall, you'll probably want to get a thinner foam pad; otherwise, the foam pad can be as thick as you need to raise you up high enough.

    The second most important piece of foam is a wedge to support your upper spine. Something just wide enough for your spine, and thicker at the top than at the bottom; this should push your upper body forward about an inch, so that the headrest is not causing your head to jut forward as much.

    If you are not incredibly long-legged, then you'll find, like me, that the car seat is much too deep to be comfortable. Place enough short foam blocks at the base of the seat to push you forward; you'll probably want your knees to be past the edge of the seat so that you can bend them. The foam blocks should only be as wide as the inner part of the driver seat - if they're too wide, they'll start to curve. The foam blocks should be just tall enough to support the next item on the list:

    Two foam wedges for lumbar support. You should place the first wedge so that its thick part is lower than its thin part. The second wedge goes in the same direction, but slightly lower, on top of the first wedge. The idea is to provide support to your lower back.

    The foam I used for everything is a nice, soft but supportive, high-quality foam - all bought from a place called House of Foam.

    Using this configuration helped my back greatly after only a few days. It's been several weeks now, and I can finally carry things on my back again.

    The only thing I can't fix with this configuration is the headrest pushing the head too far forward - the metal bars in the headrest actually are part of a "U" that is also bent in the wrong direction (namely, forward). The foam is needed so you don't crack your skull against the metal U-bar when you put your head back or in an accident. If anyone has a solution to this problem, or any improvements that they've tried and are satisfied with, please post them here - thanks!

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  3. #52
    Guest

    To everyone who is having /

    To everyone who is having / has had horrible back pain caused by the Prius' driver seat: I have a partial solution that involves padding the driver seat with foam blocks and wedges.

    I discovered that, despite the nicely curved contour of the driver seat, the actual foam inside the seat does NOT follow the contour of the fabric. Instead, the fabric is stretched so tightly that it just looks like foam is there underneath it, as one would expect. Instead, it is just air, and the foam itself is much further below (I use "much" as a relative term). Clearly, they want us to provide our own foam to complete our seats, which they can do because they've already deceived us into buying the car.

    I have been doing the following for the past several weeks, and it has made a noticeable improvement in how my back feels after driving the Prius (this is after several years of horrible back pain from the anti-ergonomically designed Prius driver seat):

    One of the most important pieces of foam is a foam pad, to be placed on the seat. I found the foam used in the Prius seats to be very cheap (examining the actual foam itself, the air pockets are not uniform) and uncomfortably hard; but put a nice, high-quality foam pad on the seat and you will feel much better. Note that if you are tall, you'll probably want to get a thinner foam pad; otherwise, the foam pad can be as thick as you need to raise you up high enough.

    The second most important piece of foam is a wedge to support your upper spine. Something just wide enough for your spine, and thicker at the top than at the bottom; this should push your upper body forward about an inch, so that the headrest is not causing your head to jut forward as much.

    If you are not incredibly long-legged, then you'll find, like me, that the car seat is much too deep to be comfortable. Place enough short foam blocks at the base of the seat to push you forward; you'll probably want your knees to be past the edge of the seat so that you can bend them. The foam blocks should only be as wide as the inner part of the driver seat - if they're too wide, they'll start to curve. The foam blocks should be just tall enough to support the next item on the list:

    Two foam wedges for lumbar support. You should place the first wedge so that its thick part is lower than its thin part. The second wedge goes in the same direction, but slightly lower, on top of the first wedge. The idea is to provide support to your lower back.

    The foam I used for everything is a nice, soft but supportive, high-quality foam - all bought from a place called House of Foam.

    Using this configuration helped my back greatly after only a few days. It's been several weeks now, and I can finally carry things on my back again.

    The only thing I can't fix with this configuration is the headrest pushing the head too far forward - the metal bars in the headrest actually are part of a "U" that is also bent in the wrong direction (namely, forward). The foam is needed so you don't crack your skull against the metal U-bar when you put your head back or in an accident. If anyone has a solution to this problem, or any improvements that they've tried and are satisfied with, please post them here - thanks!

  4. #53
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    0

    God, do I love this car

    God, do I love this car (2010 Prius). Great mileage. But God, do I hate the front seat - the shape is beyond awful and it is THE most uncomfortable car seat I have EVER used. Looking for padding this week to alter the shape of the base as well as the back. How did that seat ever pass any type of standardized tests for seat comfort....geez.

    However, terrible seats or not...50 MPG is 50 MPG. I love it.

  5. #54
    Guest

    Don't know whether to cry or

    Don't know whether to cry or feel relieved that I'm not the only one! I just bought a used 2010 Prius and the seat is so uncomfortable - I am 5'3" and have the seat so far forward I'll probably be killed by the airbag if it deploys, the front edge of the seat cuts off the circulation in my legs, my butt hurts so badly I can't stand to drive 15 minutes to work. I thought I was just getting old and creaky! But NO, this seat is terrible. Toyota, what is wrong with you people? It's not like this is the cheapest car on the road.

  6. #55
    Guest

    Just bought a new 2012

    Just bought a new 2012 Toyota Yaris (redesigned). One cannot tell during a 15 minute test drive what 2 hours of driving will tell you. My back is killing me and I never had back problems prior to driving it. The seats seem to have the same design flaws as the Prius, namely poor ergonomic design (hunchback) with low-quality foam and cloth stretched so tight that it is tented. The forward facing headrest is also uncomfortable. These are by far the worst seats I have ever sat in for a car. I realize that I didn't buy a Lexus or Mercedes when I bought this car, but the seat design is absolutely shameful. Looking at replacing them with aftermarket seats . . . Buyer beware.

  7. #56
    Guest

    In Reference to the backup

    In Reference to the backup chime. You can have your Toyota Dealer disable the chime very easily, I did it on my 2011 Prius 111. Now it only sounds once when you put it into reverse

  8. #57
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    0

    I ended up buying a seat

    I ended up buying a seat cushion from memory foam and cut it out like a "coccyx cushion". That ended the pain. If you search on line for the "coccyx cushion" there are lots of options. I remember my 2004 Rav4 took some time for my body to adjust also. The 2008 Rav4 had a much better seat so Toyota figured it out. I commute 59 miles each way which takes about an hour. I drive 30,000 to 35,000 per year. I wish the Prius was an inch or two higher like the Prius V but I won't give up the mileage reduction for the V. Other than the seat the car has been great.

  9. #58
    Guest

    I purchased a 2011 Prius in

    I purchased a 2011 Prius in November of 2011. I was so excited! Now I have developed sciatica. Driving has become so painful that I dread getting into the car. I used to have a Toyota Sienna and loved the seating. Not long after getting the Prius it started with a pain in my left hip. It has now migrated down the side of my leg and all the way down to my toes. I am in constant pain. I finally went to the doctor last week and received my diagnosis. I realize now that it started right after I bought my Prius. I bought a cushion for my lower back from Bed, Bath and Beyond a month ago but that has not helped at all. I can't believe this was all caused from the poor seating position in my car. Now to find a car with good gas mileage and comfortable seating. Any ideas???

  10. #59
    Guest

    I just bought a brand new

    I just bought a brand new 2012 and I have NEVER had back problems before. This seat is awful. Thinking of returning the car.

  11. #60
    Guest

    Dolores, that is exactly

    Dolores, that is exactly the pain I'm having with a new 2011 Prius purchased a couple of months ago. Left hip, radiating numbness/aching pain down the left leg. Started when I bought the car. Toyota must have paid off the reviewers of this car. The materials are cheap and the seats are painfully uncomfortable.

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