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Leather fading - dealership says they will dye for money

3021 Views 10 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  bundas
I have a very small side area on the leather of the driver's seat that is fading. The dealership said it's because my jeans (or any rough clothing) is rubbing against it. They said they could dye it for $60. The area is no bigger than a person's thumb! Has anyone else paid to dye their seats? What happens if my seats become more worn over time? Are they going to charge $5000 to dye my entire seat? Are there any alternatives?

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seat covers, wear linen slacks, etc.
Had a similar problem in my car; hide in the Masers is not as resilient as that found in BMWs, Mercs and Porsches.

Here in the UK there is a company (Woolies -> who provide an inexpensive self-repair kit, to match your hide color. They dispatch worldwide.

You can take a hide sample from the back seats armrest cover. Just lower the armrest, and take out the back cover (pops-out easily) and you have some areas from where you could take a small sample. Send it to them by post.

Smallest kit is £39 (about $72). True, more than the $60 your dealer is charging, but you end-up with a repair kit you could use if something else goes wrong.

Hope this helps. Ed.
correcting poor factory dye process

thanks for kit referral, that is really great info. for extensive interior leather redo, does anyone have source available. i have a couple of older ones that need a complete redo. truly sorry for all of the group that has to deal with poor dealership support. they sure make the wrong short term decisions. reminds me of some of my less than good jumps at conclusions.
I posted a prior message about the type of finish our leather apparently has. I gleaned the information from Malm's website, which is an automotive wax and cleaner manufacturer. Anyway, in shopping for a leather conditioner, their website instructed to spill a drop of water on the leather, and then wipe it away. If the water simply beaded, and when wiped clean the leather where the water was appeared the same as the rest of the leather in general, it indicated that our leather is sprayed with a vinyl/paint product which makes leather conditioning impossible, in that the coating does not allow anything else to penetrate. In my wife's 740, and as in my prior M3, the leather would darken under where the water was dropped, indicatting a more traditional tanning and dying process. Here's the rub. The traditional leather shows wear more quickly, as the actual surface of the leather is what contacts the outside world, rather than a coating. Thus, within months my M3 side bolsters began to "patina." Not bad, but not showroom new looking either. The Maserati (recent posts not withstanding) leather actually wears better in the short term. My 2002 Tabaco colored interior is truly in near showroom condition, and it's my daily driver (and I am a bigger guy at 225 lbs). However, once that coating peels or is worn off, there is no easy repair, whereas the traditional tanned and dyed leather, though becoming less new-looking sooner, will continue to patina with periodic conditioning and never look bad. Anyway, I use some shoe polish to fill cracks or blemishes when I do scratch the surface, and it really works well. Cole Haan British Tan is nearly identical to Tabaco.
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All the companies that make leather restoration products can provide them in sizes suitable enough for a complete-car redo. In addition to Woolies, you can look at Gliptone or Leatherique products (this one in the US). Hope this helps.

frankie, good info. but doesn't your clothes now become shoe polishing cloth??
leather life

tro. let me make my want clear. cars are old. 62 to 80 maserati's crack's, worn hole's, you know, old and in serious need of nu skin. maybe a reliable shop that i can rend a seat or panel to location unimportant. i live in lexington ky
Hiya Bundas,

TBH, I've seen some massively deteriorated stuff put to great condition using these kits. Have a look at Leatherique webpage,, and check if that's what you need. I think the company also runs a Yahoo Group, maybe you could ask there for tips.

Otherwise, well, you need to re-trim.


thank's tro, on my favorites list now computers are so wonderful, shame i missed understanding the industry so long ago, hind sight you know. nothing to do with maserati, sorry for getting off subject.
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