How To Optimize Your Car Air Conditioning For Cool Air
In Australia, due to the warmer climate, we tend to use our cars’ A/C a 6-8 months out of the year, and then we forget about it. But it is crucial to understand there are steps to follow and precautions to be had if you want to cool your car the right way.
Our engineers know how to handle all-things car-related, and the air-conditioner is no exception. Read down below to understand how to keep temperatures low – while being fuel-efficient.
Stop pre-cooling – it’s not worth it.
There’s something a lot of people don’t know, or at least never thought about it. Your A/C depends on your car’s engine to work properly. The faster the engine turns, the better your air conditioning system will work. And the opposite is true as well: if you’re not driving around, it’s going to take more out of your car to make the A/C work properly.
Instead of forcing your air-conditioning system to go overdrive the minute you turn on your car, try this: put the rear windows down, start driving, and let the fan start working. Drive around for 30 seconds or so – in less than a minute all the hot air will go out the window and your engine will be ready to fire the A/C.
If it’s not hot enough and you can wait, even better! Drive around for a while before you start using the air-conditioning system.
Choosing a higher A/C temperature will heat the car, go low instead.
Choosing the lowest temperature and using your fan properly will make the whole ordeal more cost-efficient. You might believe it’s the other way around, right? The lower the temperature, the more work the A/C has to do, and the more fuel your car burns – but that’s wrong.
Your typical air-conditioning system cools the air down to a certain temperature – one that’s usually lower than you might think. If you believe you are saving gas by choosing a somewhat higher temperature, you are actually doing more harm than good! If you choose a higher temperature, the A/C will have to heat the air instead – burning more fuel in the process.
Recirculating the air is pointless – avoid it.
When you are driving with people in the back of your car, you turn on both the A/C and the recirculation mode – but that’s a mistake. When your car activates the recirculation mode, it forces the air from the front part of the car to travel all the way to the back.
You might think it’s helping everyone, but people at the front are getting fresher, cooler air, while people on the back are getting stale hot air.
Do things yourself, turn off the start/stop system.
Newer cars come with an automatic Start/Stop feature, usually advertised as a fuel-saver. More often than not, it will do as advertised, but it will also keep the A/C compressor from running properly whenever the automatic feature turns your engine off.
It might not seem like much, but if you are dealing with very hot weather and stuck in traffic, you are going to have a bad time wondering why isn’t the A/C running as it should.
Keep your A/C filter clean.
Make sure you check your car’s A/C, just as you would do with your home’s air-conditioning system. Dirty filters will prevent optimal A/C use and will make you burn through a lot more fuel than you should.
Nowadays it’s rather easy to check on your car’s filters, make sure you read the manual to make sure how to do it. If you don’t change your dirty filters, you are not saving money – you are burning fuel and you’ll need more than usual.
Turn off your automatic climate control.
You can simply turn off this feature off because it won’t make the temperature cool down faster. Most cars with this feature will use the fan to adjust the temperature and not the A/C – giving poor results all the way around. Instead, do things manually and choose the right temperature for you.