Troubleshooting Power Seat Won’t Move Up And Down

The power seat of a car is equipped with various features to ensure the best comfort for passengers and the driver. Some modern cars have integrated computer memory in the seat so it remembers the favorite positions of the users. So, it becomes a problem when the power seat won’t move up and down.

The problems could be with the motors, switch, or the wiring and cables of the drive assemblies. You have to focus on the mechanism responsible for lowering or raising the seat when diagnosing the issue.

How To Troubleshoot The Power Seat Won’t Move up And Down

Fixing the power seat does not require any high-level of electrical knowledge. Some basic troubleshooting skills and following these procedures will be enough.

1. Tools Required

  • Flashlight
  • Multimeter
  • Test light
  • Two jumper wires

2. Process To Follow

Follow these steps one by one to find out the source of the problem and fix that.

Step 1: Do a visual check

Check the seat rails and the area under the seat to see if anything is obstructing the seat movement. Use a flashlight for a better visual. If both front power seats show issues, there could be a problem with the circuit breaker or fuse.

troubleshooting power seat problems
Check the seat rails and under the seats (Photo Source: youtube)


step 2: Use a test light

Turn on the ignition switch without kicking off the engine. Press the power seat switch to see if the motor starts running under the seat. If there is no sound, raise the switch from its spot.

Use a test light to find out if the switch has incoming voltage. If there is no trace of it, look for an open or short in the wiring between the switch and the fuse panel.

Step 3: Test with a multimeter for continuity

In the next step of troubleshooting the power seat won’t move up and down, you have to unplug the switch and use a multimeter to test it for continuity. Only a closed operation switch has continuity, which indicates the presence of a complete path for current flow. You have to change the switch if there is no continuity.

Step 4: Check the circuit relay

If the circuit has a relay between the switch and the motor, test it too. In that case, you have to check whether the relay is receiving voltage from the switch and transferring voltage to the motor.

Check the wiring if the incoming or outgoing voltage is absent. You may have to change the relay if there is no outgoing voltage. A test light will be handy for scanning the incoming voltage at the motor(s). If it is dead, inspect the wires between the motor and relay or switch for continuity.

power seat problems
Examine the motor to see if it’s dead or not. (Photo Source: wallpapercave)

Step 5: Examine the motor(s)

If you can detect the failed motor(s), you should examine it after unplugging from its slot. Use to jumper wires to connect the motor to the car’s battery. You have to replace the motor if it does not respond.

These are the most common ways to find out the problems behind the power seat won’t move up and down. Take the help of a service manual for having the wiring diagrams of an automobile’s various electrical systems. You will get it at auto parts stores and public libraries.