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      05-31-2011, 07:21 AM   #1
satish_141
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Question E90 seat adjustment

Guys, I am not sure if this is a problem just for me or others as well...in my E90 320D the seat however I set it it is always slightly inclined and my low back is pushed inside. I had had this car since October 2009 and this has had a very bad affect on my low back. I also notice that the clucth position is not straight to my left leg. The clutch is two hard to press as well. All these have had a bad affect on my low back. Is there any tips that I could try so my seating posture is correct and the clutch heaviness is reduced? thx.
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      05-31-2011, 09:07 AM   #2
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Handle on the outside of the seat adjusts the height.
Handle under your left knee adjusts the tilt.
Button under your right knee for the 'wings' of the seat

If the clutch feels heavy it either needs sorting out or you're a weakling
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Last edited by parapaul; 05-31-2011 at 09:23 AM.
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      05-31-2011, 10:07 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by parapaul View Post
Handle on the outside of the seat adjusts the height.
Handle under your left knee adjusts the tilt.
Button under your right knee for the 'wings' of the seat

If the clutch feels heavy it either needs sorting out or you're a weakling
This assumes you have an M Sport, or optional sports/part electric seats fitted.

I don't think there is quite as much flexibility with 'standard' seats.
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      05-31-2011, 10:07 AM   #4
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I can't help you with the clutch but you need to get the seat as upright as you can while still remaining comfortable. Imagine sitting in a dining or office chair. It's unlikely you'll avoid your knees being higher than your bum but get as close to this position as you can. It could also be alleviated by adjusting the seat forward and/or the steering wheel toward you.

I have a herniated disc. I know what I'm talking about
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      05-31-2011, 10:40 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by parapaul View Post
Handle on the outside of the seat adjusts the height.
Handle under your left knee adjusts the tilt.
Button under your right knee for the 'wings' of the seat

If the clutch feels heavy it either needs sorting out or you're a weakling
thank you, I know all the controls to adjust the seats, but never got the "L" shape seating position. The L is sought of more inclined as if my legs are above my back which doesnt feel that comfortable.

Re: clutch, guess I may be a weakling
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      05-31-2011, 10:41 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Falmouthboy View Post
This assumes you have an M Sport, or optional sports/part electric seats fitted.

I don't think there is quite as much flexibility with 'standard' seats.
Ok, I just have standard seats, no M sport
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      05-31-2011, 10:44 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rich1068 View Post
I can't help you with the clutch but you need to get the seat as upright as you can while still remaining comfortable. Imagine sitting in a dining or office chair. It's unlikely you'll avoid your knees being higher than your bum but get as close to this position as you can. It could also be alleviated by adjusting the seat forward and/or the steering wheel toward you.

I have a herniated disc. I know what I'm talking about
Hi Rich, thank you. Sorry to know you have a herinated disc...I fully appreciate your suggestion, but it is just that I could never get a proper upright seat adjustment, my knees are always above the bum level. I wish I could keep both of them same level in an "L" shape so it is more comfortable, may be I need to look at changing the car but I like BMW so much except for this annoying thing
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      05-31-2011, 02:05 PM   #8
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Sounds like your perhaps too close to the steering.

Make the seat back upright and then recline one notch.

Have the legs more straight out in front of you (this is not an MPV with the bend on the knees).

Increase the height setting on the seat to 3 notches above the base. You should be fairly upright now.

I think you can still tilt the seat(?) if so then lower the front squab down.

Adjust the steering so that it is far enough out to have a slight 25 degree bend at your elbows, ideally with your wrists resting on top of the wheel with arms at full extension.

The clutch is sadly offset, same in Audis etc, nothing can be done there but gym (try driving a TVR or a Mazda6 MPS if you want heavy). Also if its too heavy get it checked.

Let us know how you go, post a photo of you sitting in the car.

I have a bad lower back and know how hard it is to get comfortable. Usually means sitting more upright and higher than I would like.
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      06-01-2011, 08:33 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hmi1750 View Post
Sounds like your perhaps too close to the steering.

Make the seat back upright and then recline one notch.

Have the legs more straight out in front of you (this is not an MPV with the bend on the knees).

Increase the height setting on the seat to 3 notches above the base. You should be fairly upright now.

I think you can still tilt the seat(?) if so then lower the front squab down.

Adjust the steering so that it is far enough out to have a slight 25 degree bend at your elbows, ideally with your wrists resting on top of the wheel with arms at full extension.

The clutch is sadly offset, same in Audis etc, nothing can be done there but gym (try driving a TVR or a Mazda6 MPS if you want heavy). Also if its too heavy get it checked.

Let us know how you go, post a photo of you sitting in the car.

I have a bad lower back and know how hard it is to get comfortable. Usually means sitting more upright and higher than I would like.
ah cool! thanks for the wonderful advise..I shall try all the tips...only one this which I unable to do and which is exactly what I want is

tilt the seat(?) if so then lower the front squab down...

this is what I cant do..if this done, then I can sit with a good posture with less stress on my low back...how come BMW being such a big company build a car for which seat adjustment is not good and also the clutch is cross...
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      06-01-2011, 08:58 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by satish_141 View Post
...how come BMW being such a big company build a car for which seat adjustment is not good and also the clutch is cross...
Most car makers don't fit tilt function to enough of the seat ranges, and it is why cars are so uncomfortable, IMO.

For me the BMW sport seat is essential, as the SE seats just don't give enough options to set it to my needs.

I thought BMW had more or less sorted the pedal poition on the E9* cars. Go back a couple generations and it was really an issue, due to RHD conversion limitations.

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      06-01-2011, 09:05 AM   #11
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Agree with the 'L' shape, but it has to be a reclined 'L' for me.

I always want to angle/tip the seat base further back and recline the backrest a little i.e. knees higher than backside. This keeps you cosseted and secure in the seat under braking, instead of sliding off or bracing with your feet and knees.

Cars with high flat seat bases feel like you're sitting on a bar stool whilst driving (ford are a particular culprit here)

For me (5'11") its:

Seat base right down front lifted up, then set the distance so your left leg is just bent at full clutch depression.

Then set the wheel distance such that your arms are just bent with your hands gripping the top of the wheel.

This usually means no legroom for rear passengers (well about 15cm max anyway) but that's tough.

Last edited by doughboy; 06-01-2011 at 09:19 AM.
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      06-01-2011, 09:14 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doughboy View Post
Agree with the 'L' shape, but it has to be a reclined 'L' if you get me.

I always want to angle/tip the seat base further back and recline the backrest a little i.e. knees higher than backside. This keeps you in the seat under braking, instead of sliding off.

Cars with flat seat bases feel like you're sitting on a bar stool whilst driving (ford are a particular culprit here)

For me (5'11") its:

Seat base right down, left leg just bent at full clutch depression.

Then set the wheel distance such that your arms are just bent with your hands gripping the top of the wheel.

This usually means no legroom for rear passengers (well about 6" anyway) but thats tough.
unfortunately it is the the reclined "L" is causing the bak pain for me
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      06-01-2011, 09:18 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doughboy View Post
Cars with flat seat bases feel like you're sitting on a bar stool whilst driving (ford are a particular culprit here).
Totally agree with the sitting on a seat, compared to sitting in the seat. That has always been my issue, hate to sit on a seat in a car.

BTW, not just Ford, VW is another maker who should know better.

To me, the BMW sport seat is a good place to be, drove 500 miles yesterday, and not one moment did I think I'm getting uncomfortable. That tells me the seat is a pretty good design.

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      06-01-2011, 09:21 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by satish_141 View Post
unfortunately it is the the reclined "L" is causing the bak pain for me
Its a pity the adjustable lumber support is a 200 option, a bit mean of BMW.
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      06-01-2011, 10:25 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HighlandPete View Post
Totally agree with the sitting on a seat, compared to sitting in the seat. That has always been my issue, hate to sit on a seat in a car.

BTW, not just Ford, VW is another maker who should know better.

To me, the BMW sport seat is a good place to be, drove 500 miles yesterday, and not one moment did I think I'm getting uncomfortable. That tells me the seat is a pretty good design.

HighlandPete
Hi Pete,

Would it be possible for me to get the same seat you have? how much would it cost for me to replace? thanks.
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      06-01-2011, 06:12 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doughboy View Post
Agree with the 'L' shape, but it has to be a reclined 'L' for me.

I always want to angle/tip the seat base further back and recline the backrest a little i.e. knees higher than backside. This keeps you cosseted and secure in the seat under braking, instead of sliding off or bracing with your feet and knees.

Cars with high flat seat bases feel like you're sitting on a bar stool whilst driving (ford are a particular culprit here)

For me (5'11") its:

Seat base right down front lifted up, then set the distance so your left leg is just bent at full clutch depression.

Then set the wheel distance such that your arms are just bent with your hands gripping the top of the wheel.

This usually means no legroom for rear passengers (well about 15cm max anyway) but that's tough.
plus one!!! ...

I think thats the racing position ;-)
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      06-02-2011, 03:15 AM   #17
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I'd say it's the back problems position too!
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      06-02-2011, 03:51 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rich1068 View Post
I'd say it's the back problems position too!

My back problem got worst only after I changed my car to 320D SE 1 1/2 years ago, I am seriously thinking of changing to an automatic 320D again, but what seats do I need to look for when I buy the new one?
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      06-02-2011, 05:32 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by satish_141 View Post
My back problem got worst only after I changed my car to 320D SE 1 1/2 years ago, I am seriously thinking of changing to an automatic 320D again, but what seats do I need to look for when I buy the new one?
If you are not buying an M Sport, look out for 'sports seats'. However, also look for fully electric of part electric as these also have the full range of adjustment, but don't heve the blow up side bolsters and are flatter. There is also a 'lumbar support' option out there, but cars with it are rare.
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      06-02-2011, 06:00 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Falmouthboy View Post
If you are not buying an M Sport, look out for 'sports seats'. However, also look for fully electric of part electric as these also have the full range of adjustment, but don't heve the blow up side bolsters and are flatter. There is also a 'lumbar support' option out there, but cars with it are rare.
thank you, I thought the sports seats are meant to be less comfortable anyway I will check for electric seats..
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      06-02-2011, 06:09 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rich1068 View Post
I'd say it's the back problems position too!
I only get back ache when I sit up vertically (rear seats are bad for this), as all your body weight is on your lower back IMO.

Arms bent (too close to wheel) causes shoulder slouch which makes it worse too for me.

Angle up the seat base so it supports your thighs from below instead of your leg weight being on your feet.

Recline and let the seat-back take the weight - well its worked for me for the last 22+ driving years
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      06-02-2011, 12:12 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doughboy View Post
I only get back ache when I sit up vertically (rear seats are bad for this), as all your body weight is on your lower back IMO.

Arms bent (too close to wheel) causes shoulder slouch which makes it worse too for me.

Angle up the seat base so it supports your thighs from below instead of your leg weight being on your feet.

Recline and let the seat-back take the weight - well its worked for me for the last 22+ driving years
I quite agree with 'doughboy.'!
It is best to recline the seat back as much as you can to take the load off your lower back, angle the seat base to support your thighs and drive with straight arms. This works for me to!
It certainly does help to have sport seats with lumber support.
Previously, I had an SE with standard seats with no lumber support and I really believe that this started my back probs which eventually meant I needed a Disabled Blue Badge, as I had difficulty in walking.
I am OK now!
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