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2019 Limited CVT
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just bought a new 2019 Limited. That gray/black leather interior looks really sharp, and I want to keep it in good shape for as long as possible. I've read a lot of conflicting information, ranging from "just wipe up any spills" to "spend a few hours rubbing in this miracle treatment every other week". I don't mind putting in a little elbow grease, but isn't there something in between those two extremes?

I don't expect my seats to look factory new 25 years from now. I just want to minimize fading and cracking / peeling. What do you use for protecting your leather? What do you use for cleaning up spills?
 

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2014 2.5i Limited CVT
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2,778 Posts
Invest in a good leather cleaning kit. This can come from a furniture store or a leather goods store. You can also try an upholstery shop. I used to work (years ago) for a leather manufacturer. At the time, they were providing US leather interiors for Subaru as a port program. This was back in the late 90s...

I've had leather interiors in lighter colors (like the grey in our Foresters) for decades. A lot of it also depends on the individual quality of the individual hides used for the seats. I've seen some where just a side bolster will go bad but the rest is 100% ok-fine-n-dandy.

Clean up spills, use the cleaner and conditioner regularly. When you see they're dirty, just wipe clean.
 

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2019 Limited CVT
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Invest in a good leather cleaning kit. This can come from a furniture store or a leather goods store
So as far as care goes, there's no real difference between the products I'd use on the leather in my Forester and the products someone would use on a leather sofa?

Any brands you'd recommend / avoid? Looks like Meguiar's has pretty good reviews on Amazon.
 

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2014 2.5i Limited CVT
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Yes, pretty much what you use on your leather sofa is fine.

I had a huge stock of leather cleaner/conditioner kits from the former job (I think I finally used it all up last year?)... and the leather kit from my local furniture store when I bought a leather chair or 3.... Meguiars is good - I never had any issues at all when I used before.

Know that some of the seat panels are vinyl (sides, back, etc) and the "body touching" panels are usually leather.
 

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2019 Crosstrek 2018 Forester XT
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Its plastic coated just keep it clean. Leather products are a scam.
 

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2019 Limited CVT
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the input, all. This is my first leather interior and I want to make sure I don't make any mistakes / neglect to do something basic. Here in PA we get both hot summers and cold winters, along with more than our share of road salt. Despite my best efforts I guarantee some snow and salt will make it into the car.

I see a lot of "middle-age" (5-10 year-old) cars with leather interior where the driver's seat is cracked, chipped, and generally worn out. I also see leather interiors that are 10+ years old and look nearly new. Is this something that regular application of a conditioner will prevent?
 

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2017 Forester 2.5i CVT
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600 Posts
Just bought a new 2019 Limited. That gray/black leather interior looks really sharp, and I want to keep it in good shape for as long as possible. I've read a lot of conflicting information, ranging from "just wipe up any spills" to "spend a few hours rubbing in this miracle treatment every other week". I don't mind putting in a little elbow grease, but isn't there something in between those two extremes?



I don't expect my seats to look factory new 25 years from now. I just want to minimize fading and cracking / peeling. What do you use for protecting your leather? What do you use for cleaning up spills?
Damp cloth for spills.

On my last Acura, 10years old and 160kmiles and still supple and great. I used meguiars every time I washed car. 2x per month.

Was a bit greasy. Using Chemical Guys more now on the Subi. Verdict still out.

Auto leather is HIGHLY processed with plasticized coating for UV resistance. Most important thing you can do is to sinply just keep surface clean. Grit grinding against the outter UV layers is most damaging...


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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2016 and 2020 Foresters
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With leather seats in cars, a few things make the most difference:

Quality of the hide.
Quality of construction.
Stress put on the seat (driver's weight and how they enter and exit the vehicle).
 

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2019 Forester 2.5 Touring CVT
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18 Posts
I have mentioned this before, but it may give you thought. I just traded in my 2014 Subaru Forester Limited for a 2019 Forester Touring.
On the Limited I only used Saddle Soap to clean the leather seats. I will also use it on the 2019 Touring. What brand you use is up
to you - look on Amazon; a couple of them have, such as Fiebings and Kiwi, a 90% 4-5 star rating. This is a product (saddle soap)
that has been around for years and proved its worth. YMMV.

Dan
 

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2014 Volt
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23 Posts
Many are. Some are not. One I've found that is not a scam is Obenauf's LP. I've used it to resuscitate plenty of dried and stiff leather products from boots to gloves.
I can't say enough good about Obenauf's, I will not put anything else on my work boots and it only took me 25 years to find it. If you go to some of the work boot forums you'll notice that's what a lot of people put on their $300 boots. I'm not certain I would put it on my leather seats though. If you go to the non-brand specific car detailing forums, Leather Master's seems to get really good reviews. Yes, it is available on the "The Scarlet Letter" (amazon).
 
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