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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The title says it all. Tried to research the mechanics of cooled seats. Learned from some unintelligible article there are 3 types. Theoretically, they can raise mpg by around 7.5% by reducing HVAC use. Which one does GM use for Cadillac and other vehicles? just wondering........

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I don't know what ones GM uses, but I had them on an Expedition. I LOVED them. Ford uses a Peletier unit to heat/cool air then pushes that through a tube network in the seat. It works reasonably well, though not as fast on the warm up as electric. The only down side I can remember from this method is they are slightly audible when they run. I never really noticed it with the stereo on. Only when driving in complete silence.
 

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TourGuide said:
I don't know what ones GM uses, but I had them on an Expedition. I LOVED them. Ford uses a Peletier unit to heat/cool air then pushes that through a tube network in the seat. It works reasonably well, though not as fast on the warm up as electric. The only down side I can remember from this method is they are slightly audible when they run. I never really noticed it with the stereo on. Only when driving in complete silence.
I agree with all of this. I also had an Expedition. I loved the cool seats in the summer. In the winter I felt it did slow down the heating process since the Ford method does use a fan to distribute the heat. I prefer the resistive element heaters for heated seats. I also did not find the fan noise offensive.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
zman said:
I agree with all of this. I also had an Expedition. I loved the cool seats in the summer. In the winter I felt it did slow down the heating process since the Ford method does use a fan to distribute the heat. I prefer the resistive element heaters for heated seats. I also did not find the fan noise offensive.
Can you explain what a "resistive element" is? Thanks.

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blurrybill said:
Can you explain what a "resistive element" is? Thanks.

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I think it is the way the vast majority of seat heaters work. I am sure someone will correct me if I am wrong. :nono:

Basically, it is loosely analogous to a wall heater. If you apply a voltage across an element, such as a wire, the current running through the wire will generate heat. That is my way of saying a fancy heating pad, I guess.
 

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what a "resistive element" is?

Think electric blanket. A resistive element would be a weave (most likely) of material that is conductive. To heat this material a current is applied and the current yields heat.

I am not familiar with the different materials that might be used for this purpose, though I presume anything that conducts electricity and is resonably durable would suffice.

So in this reference we are talking about the heat portion of the equation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks, zman and tourguide. Now, if others can supply explanations of the cooled part of the equation....

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Most of the automotive heat elements are carbon fiber today. You don't lose the whole heating element this way like you would if a wire broke in the old units.
 

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blurrybill said:
Thanks, zman and tourguide. Now, if others can supply explanations of the cooled part of the equation....
They heat by pushing current through wires. I guess they cool by sucking it back!! :happy: :happy: :happy: :beer:
 
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