Heated Seats vs Heated Steering Wheels: Which is Better?

When it comes to staying warm and comfortable in your car during cold winter months, heated seats and heated steering wheels are two popular options. TAS Electronics, specialists in heated car seat installation, offer insights into these choices. But which one is better? In this article, we’ll compare the pros and cons of each to help you decide.

How Do Heated Seats Work?

Heated seats use built-in electric heating elements under the upholstery to gently warm the surface of the seats. The level of heat is adjustable, usually with low, medium and high settings. Benefits of Heated Seats:

  • Warm your entire body from the base up
  • Allow you to stay warm without bulky layers
  • Provide soothing warmth for sore muscles or back pain
  • Can be used year-round for comfort Potential Downsides:
  • Can get too hot on the highest setting
  • Only heat where your body touches the seat
  • Aftermarket options may look visually different than factory seats

How Do Heated Steering Wheels Work?

Heated steering wheels have heating elements built into the leather or material wrapping the wheel. Just like heated seats, they typically offer adjustable low, medium and high heat settings. Benefits of Heated Steering Wheels:

  • Warm your hands directly
  • Convenient controls right at your fingertips
  • Don’t require you to sit in a specific spot to feel warmth
  • Provide instant heat without gloves Potential Downsides:
  • Heat concentrated in hands and not whole body
  • Can feel too hot, especially on highest setting
  • Provide less benefits for back/body pain
  • Aftermarket options may not match factory wheels

Heated Seats vs. Heated Steering Wheel: Comparison Chart

 FeatureHeated SeatsHeated Steering Wheel
Area heatedBack, legs, bottomHands, fingers
Adjustable settingsYesYes
Warmth for whole bodyYesPartial
Soothing for aches/painsYesMinimal
Visually matches interiorDepends on modelDepends on model
Easy to operateButtons near seatButtons on wheel
Year-round comfortYesLess so

Key Considerations

When choosing between heated seats or a heated steering wheel, keep these factors in mind:

  • Weather conditions – If you live in an extremely cold climate, heated seats may be better for keeping your whole body warm. If winters are mild, a steering wheel may suffice.
  • Commute length – Long commutes mean you’ll be sitting for extended periods, so heated seats are ideal. Short trips may benefit more from a quick blast of heat from the wheel.
  • Existing features – Many new vehicles come equipped with both heated seats and steering wheels. Consider whether you need aftermarket additions.
  • Budget – Heated seats tend to be more expensive to purchase and install aftermarket. Heated steering wheels cost less for both factory and aftermarket options.
  • Aches and pains – Heated seats excel at soothing sore muscles and back pain, while steering wheels only heat hands and don’t provide targeted relief.
  • Passenger comfort – Heated seats warm everyone sitting in the vehicle. Steering wheel heaters only directly benefit the driver.

Our Recommendation

While both heated car seats and heated steering wheels have their perks, we think that heated seats provide more all-around benefits for comfort and warmth. The ability to heat your entire body from the base up is a key advantage, as is soothing tired muscles and pain. Heated steering wheels serve their purpose, but aren’t as universally beneficial for drivers and passengers.

Looking to Stay Warm in Your Car this Winter?

If you live in the Toledo, Ohio area and want to upgrade your vehicle with heated seats, visit TAS Electronics. Their expert technicians can professionally install aftermarket heated seats tailored to your make and model. TAS Electronics also offers:

  • High-quality heated seat models from top brands
  • Customization of heat levels and controls
  • Matching upholstery options
  • Integrated installations so upgrades look factory-installed Don’t suffer through another frosty Ohio winter! Stop by TAS Electronics today to experience the comfort and convenience of heated seats. With custom installation options to fit any vehicle, you’ll be warm and cozy driving all season long.

Frequently Asked Questions About Heated Seats and Steering Wheels

Still deciding between heated seats or steering wheels? Here are answers to some commonly asked questions:

Are heated seats or steering wheels safer?

Both heated car seats and steering wheels are generally safe to use when installed properly and not damaged. As always, never operate damaged or faulty electrical components in your vehicle.

Which option costs more?

Heated seats tend to be more expensive, both from the factory and for aftermarket installation. Heated steering wheels cost less across the board.

Can you install heated seats in an older car?

Yes, most vehicles can be retrofitted with heated seats, even older models. For older cars, custom installation is required but very feasible.

Do heated seats and wheels drain your car’s battery?

Minimally. The drain is similar to other standard electronics like headlights or the radio. Just don’t leave them on overnight or when the car is off.

Should you use heated seats if you’re pregnant?

It’s generally safe, but pregnant women should keep the temperature on low and avoid prolonged direct contact with the lower back. Consult your doctor as well.

Can aftermarket heated seats look OEM?

Yes, with custom upholstery matched to your interior, quality heated seat installation can appear factory-installed.

Choose Heated Seat Comfort This Winter

When you weigh the pros and cons, heated seats provide whole body warmth that standard heated steering wheels just can’t match. For toasty comfort all winter long, upgrade your ride with custom heated seats from the experts at TAS Electronics in Toledo. Their quality installations will keep you feeling cozy even on the coldest Ohio days.

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