With heatwaves sweeping the nation this summer, knowing how to keep your car cool is an absolute must. If you are planning on going on road trips to make the most of the hot weather, we don’t blame you! However, if you find yourself sitting in traffic in a sweltering hot car, it can really dampen the excitement of the excursion. With our simple hacks, you can keep your car at an optimum temperature, no matter what the weather.

The ultimate guide on how to keep your car cool during the summer

We have all experienced the almost unbearable feeling of sitting in a car that’s been parked out in the sun for a long time. Especially if you have leather seats in your vehicle, the extreme temperatures can make the interior of your car uncomfortably hot. However, although we can’t control the weather, there are many ways which you can control the temperature of your car to keep it cool during the summer. Although we have detailed many ways which you can keep your car cool down below, your car becomes susceptible to many issues other than overheating when the weather is hot. With the chances of your vehicle breaking down increasing significantly during the summer, and especially if you are planning to take your car on a long journey when the weather is hot, we highly recommend bringing your vehicle in for a car service in Milton Keynes beforehand. Our team of experienced and dedicated mechanics will thoroughly inspect your car to ensure your vehicle runs perfectly, even under the strain of extreme heat.

windshield shade

Sun shades

A very simple yet effective way to keep your car cool is to invest in sunshades. Smaller sunshades, which can be easily attached to backseat passenger windows, are ideal for children especially as it will protect them from harmful UV rays and sun glare. Moreover, larger windscreen covers are excellent at keeping the entire car cool as the sunlight reflects off their silver exterior. The soft felt interior and foam core in windscreen covers also provides further insulation against the heat.

Park in a shaded area

The best way to keep your car cool is to avoid the sun as much as possible. Parking in direct sunlight will not only make your car uncomfortably hot, but it could also ruin the interior and exterior. For example, your car’s dashboard gets some of the longest exposure to sunlight and can begin to fade relatively quickly. In fact, under intense heat, certain materials will even split or crack. The sun can also negatively impact your car’s upholstery, especially if you have leather seats. Although the leather used for car seats are often treated to be more resistant to sun damage, it does not make them immune to fading or stiffening when exposed to the sun. So, in order to keep your car cool, and prevent any costly damage, parking in a shaded area is imperative.

Air conditioning

As cars continue to evolve and adapt modern technology, we forget that air conditioning was once considered a luxury. Now, air conditioning is typically fitted as standard in most vehicles, making those hot summer days bearable. Many people are cautious about using their car’s air conditioning thanks to the ongoing debate of: AC or windows down? For years, many motorists have disputed which cooling method is most effective and the most fuel-efficient. While driving with the windows down instantly brings a breeze into the car, it increases wind resistance, which ultimately slows your car down. As a result, your car requires more fuel to run. Similarly, using air conditioning can also decrease fuel efficiency as it puts extra strain on your car’s engine. While both methods are proven to cool your car down, their effectiveness depends on several factors, which include your car, the weather conditions and speed. However, the general rule of thumb most vehicle owners follow is to have the windows down while on city streets and rural areas, but resort to air conditioning when on the motorway. To make sure your AC is performing to its full potential, you should consider getting your air conditioning recharged in Milton Keynes. Getting your air conditioning recharged means more refrigerant will be added, ensuring cold air is blown out on demand.

If you find the air conditioning in your car isn’t reaching all the passengers, why not keep a few handheld fans in the glove box for those extra hot days? Cooling sprays are also useful to have to hand on longer journeys as they will give you or your passengers are refreshing revamp to prevent overheating.

air conditioning

Coolant

The coolant in your car plays a vital role on hot days as its primary function is to absorb the extreme heat generated by the running engine. As over half the energy produced by a fuel-burning engine is converted into heat, it is very easy for your car to overheat, leaving you without a working vehicle. By continuously circulating through the engine and back through the radiator, your car’s coolant minimises the chance of this happening, giving you peace of mind that your car will not let you down when you need it most. Coolant is a very basic formulation of distilled water and alcohol that does not only prevent the coolant system from reaching boiling temperatures during the summer, but also:

  • Prevents the coolant system from freezing during the extreme winter temperatures
  • Helps to reduce engine rust and corrosion in the coolant system
  • Extends the life of rubber and plastic components of the coolant system
  • Helps to reduce electrolysis, which can erode engine components and cause costly repairs

With Halfords online tool, you can easily find the right coolant for your vehicle by simply entering your registration plate and searching through their great selection of products. You should use The AA’s useful guide on how to check your coolant when you next use your car as the step by step instructions make it easy for you to determine if you need to top up your coolant, and how to do so.

coolant

Tinted windows

The tinting film applied to your car windows works exceptionally well as a heat deterrent. In fact, low transparency window tint can reduce the temperature of your car’s interior by up to 70%! Tinted windows also offer added privacy, which guarantees to make each journey feel like the ultimate celebrity experience. If you are seriously considering tinted windows, you should be aware of the laws and restrictions in place to ensure your car can be legally driven on the road. These laws are enforced as extremely dark tint can hinder a driver’s visibility, and tinted windows have been thought to be a contributory factor of some serious accidents.

In the UK, you are allowed to tint your car’s front and rear windows subject to certain conditions, and depending on when the vehicle was first used. While there are no restrictions for tinting rear side windows and the rear windscreen, front side windows and your front windscreen have to adhere to the following:

If your vehicle was first used on or after April 1st 1985:

  • The front windscreen must allow a minimum of 75% light through
  • The front side windows must allow a minimum of 70% light through

If your vehicle was first used before April 1st 1985:

  • Both the front windscreen and front windows must allow through a minimum of 70% light

It is vital that you obey these laws, because if your windows do not conform to the guidelines and restrictions, you could be served with a probation notice, stopping you from using your car until the window tint has been removed, or you may receive a court summons/penalty notice. If the idea of window tinting has inspired you to give your car a little makeover, why not consider our vehicle modification in Milton Keynes. From track day preparation to in-car entrainment, you can transform your car and make it possible to achieve your performance dreams.

applying tinting film

A car you can rely on

As heat can be extremely detrimental to your car, it is important to know the various ways to keep it cool. Not only does the hot weather turn your car into a sauna on wheels, making long road trips almost unbearable, but it can also cause a significant amount of damage, which could be costly to repair. We understand having a reliable car during the summer is essential for those last-minute trips to the beach, so following any of our advice above will keep your car functioning on even the hottest of days.

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