When it’s time to go home after a long day of summer fun, the last thing any driver (or passenger) wants is to be stuck in a sweltering vehicle. How to avoid this dreaded summertime phenomenon? Keep your vehicle from reaching those scorching temperatures in the first place! Here is a list of tips on how to keep your car cool on hot summer days:
1. Park in the shade
This may sound obvious, but it’s a piece of advice that’s all too often overlooked. Instead of choosing a parking spot closer to your destination, regardless of sun exposure, opt for a spot that receives less sunlight – even if it’s a little further away from your destination.
Parking in the shade protects your car from direct sunlight and, as a pleasant consequence, from heating up inside.
2. Park facing away from the sun
If shaded parking is not available, check your watch and note the position of the sun. As your car’s largest window, your windshield should always face away from the sun. As an added bonus, parking facing away from the sun keeps your steering wheel, driver’s seat and dashboard out of direct sunlight, preventing melting or colour-fading.
3. Use sunshades
Another way to park in the shade is to create your own. Sunshades are protective opaque shields which fit across your windshield to reflect the sun and absorb heat – and that means your interior upholstery doesn’t have to. There are also shades to cover your side-windows and rear windshield.
4. Install auto ventshades
Cracking car windows creates airflow through a stationary vehicle, but a sudden rainfall can leave your car soaked as a consequence. By installing visor-like auto ventshades at the tops of your windows, you may leave your windows open without worrying about the rain.
5. Cover your leather
Leather in direct sunlight can heat up to temperatures high enough to burn skin. Direct sunlight also causes expensive leather upholstery to dry out and crack. The bottom line: while leather seats may look great, but these scorched surfaces won’t feel so great against your skin!
To help protect your leather (and your skin), put a blanket or towel over your car’s leather upholstery after parking. The cotton serves to block the sun’s rays and absorb their heat. If you don’t relish the idea of lugging around towels or blankets in your trunk, you can also try fabric seat covers during the summer months.
6. Use the water wipe-down
If exposed to the blazing summer sun, any pieces of metal in your car’s interior can become molten in a matter of minutes. To avoid burning yourself on your clutch or seatbelt buckle upon entering your car, wipe them down with a wet rag. The water will absorb some of the heat and evaporate, cooling down the scorched metal and saving you from a potential burn.
7. Install a solar-powered fan
Inexpensive and easy-to-use, solar-powered fans are an excellent solution to the inevitable hot car problem. Attach them to the tops of your windows after parking and the sun will do the rest. After powering up, the small fans begin drawing hot air from the inside of your car and blowing it outside. It’s a simple solution, but it really works!
8. Open bottom vents
As part of your summer parking routine, close all of your top circulation vents. When you turn on your car and the air turns back, all the hot air will be pushed up and out your windows. Also make sure your air conditioner is set to draw its air from outside, as opposed to circulating the hot and stale air inside your car.