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Rover 800 820 Rear Seat Repairs.

1999 Rover 800 820 Fastback Rear Seat with Broken Catch!
1999 Rover 800 820 Fastback Rear Seat with Broken Catch!

Car: 1999 Rover 800 820 Auto Fastback

Colour: Charcoal Grey / Black

One of the great advantages of the Rover 800 Fastback is the huge loading space that is gained when you put the split folding rear seats down. & The very large hatch makes it a very easy car to load. Especially for larger items.

The seats will fold down better with the rear seat head rests either lowered or removed. But for an even flatter loading area and slightly more space, you can remove the rear seat base from the back of the car before you lower the rear seat backs. The only trouble with this is that if you want to keep part or the rear seat in the up position for carrying a passenger, then you have no base for them to sit on!

The 800 Fastback will easily cope with Fridges, Freezers, Rolls of Lino & Carpets, Bricks, Rubble, Step Ladders, Bicycles, Trees, in fact you name it and we've probably carried it at some point! (okay sometimes the passenger seat may need laying flat, or we have to drive with the boot tied open, but never the less, we have rarely needed a van since we no longer have any vans (if that makes any sense!).

After several years of continuous use, the catches that hold the rear seat backs in place sometimes start to get a little difficult to operate. This is not usually a problem until the time you come to lower the rear seats and the lever or catch has broken.

When the lever had snapped on this car we did not know about it of course until we came to use it! The problem was we were away from home and we had no tools with us, yet we needed to lower the seats down to load the car.

With no choice but to fix it before we could get on our way, we had to work out how we could get the seat free. The problem looked like we had an easy solution in that all we had to do was sit in the boot and undue the bracket that the seat catch locks on to. The trouble is you can only just get to the one bolt head that you can see is holding the bracket in place.

Knowing we could undue the bolt if only we had a 10mm spanner, we looked at the clock, if one of us stayed with the stuff, the other could get to the local Halfords (and back), just before they were due to shut. Thankfully, because I knew what I wanted, the staff let me in just as they were about to close.

So after the short drive back, I struggled but managed to undue the first bolt. It was while undoing the first bolt that we managed to feel / locate the second bolt! (We thought there must be two!) . The trouble was although the first bolt was difficult to remove the second was almost inaccessible. But with hundreds of minute turns on the spanner later, we finally managed it, and were able to finally get on our way.

After we undid the bolts we keep them out until we could fix the seat problem, as no way did we want to have to do that again.

When we took the seat apart it was easy to see how the plastic lever had broken.

The solution was quite an easy one. We simply put a thin nut and bolt right through the device. In fact we worked out that one small part was of no use, and that it would work better if we keep it out!

After satisfyingly testing the lever we put the seat back together and then put it and the locking bracket back in place in the car. We were more than pleased with the result. The catch now worked better than it had in years.

& while we had all the tools and seats out we oiled up all the mechanism and cables on the other rear section of the seat as well. Just for good measure.

Prevention is better than cure as they say!


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