Swivel seats can help you to get in and out of your car more easily.
Some come right out of the car and lift or lower to help you to your feet or into a wheelchair.
Some let you transfer from your wheelchair inside the car.
If you find it difficult to get into a car seat and turn to face forward, a device to help you swivel may help.
- The simplest is a cushion that you put on the car seat.
- Some have two layers joined with a swivel, so they act as turntables.
- Others are just made of slippery material.
Safety Note: If you use a swivel cushion (or plastic bag) that is slippery, you must remove it before you drive off - it could be dangerous otherwise as you could slide off the seat in an accident.
- You need to tell your insurance company if you use any specialist equipment to drive.
- This includes sliding or swivelling cushions, if you leave them on the seat while driving.
Swivel seat systems
More sophisticated are systems where the whole seat swivels to face sideways out of the car.
Some are manual (you release a catch and swing the seat round by yourself), while some are powered.
If you have stiff legs, make sure the seat slides back far enough for you to get in.
Some swivel seats are designed to slide back as you turn through the door to make it easier to get you legs inside. You also need to make sure that you will have enough headroom - especially as you pass through the door.
Most swivel seats replace the original seat.
This means you may not be able to have matching upholstery or the features of the original seat,
You'll also have to find somewhere to store the original seat if you mean to refit it later.
All swivel seats use the existing seat mountings which:
- helps to ensure that the seat is safe
- means the original seats can be refitted if necessary.
Swivel seats are more suitable for two and three-door cars because the doors are wider.
The range of movement of some swivel seats may be limited in some vehicles, especially on the driver's side.
Always check with the supplier that the swivel seat system will fit in your car. Compare measurements of vehicles by using our car search.
Types of swivel seat systems
There are three types of swivel seats. Basic swivel seats just turn through 90 degrees to face out of the car. They can be operated by hand or can be powered.Other seats come right out over the sill. These lifting and lowering swivel seats will also raise you to your feet, or lower you if you have a high vehicle or to help you into a wheelchair. Some are programmed to manoeuvre you out of the car in the easiest way, avoiding the roof and door pillars and sliding back to help you get your legs out.
Some people use a ramp or lift to go into the vehicle with their wheelchair and then transfer inside to a swivel seat to drive. This gives you full independence with a manual or power chair. These internal-transfer swivel seats are fully powered. Some have a lifting action that helps you get your feet round to the front.