Global warming has led to climate change, which is making the summers unbearably hot. The hottest areas are confined spaces like your car. So car air conditioning has become essential in order to survive the summer. To make it run longer and not give you any trouble when you need it the most, you need to protect it as much as possible. So here in this article, we have presented you with everything that you need to know to provide that protection.
The Mechanics Behind Your Car Air Conditioner
Your car air conditioner, like any other AC, works on a very simple mechanism – the evaporation and compression cycle of a refrigerant liquid. The AC system contains a compressor, powered by a drive belt connected to the crankshaft of the engine. When you switch on your AC, the compressor pumps refrigerant vapour under high pressure to the condenser where it liquifies. This liquid refrigerant is then collected into a receiver to make it moisture-free and is sent to an expansion valve. Here the pressure is released, and it is turned into vapour again in the evaporator. This process absorbs heat from the air inside the car to cool it down, and this cool air is then circulated with a blower fan. The air from outside enters the car in a purified form through a cabin air filter.
How To Protect Your Car’s Air Conditioning System In Hot Weather
The summer is when your car AC is going to be used the most. However, the good news is, protecting it in this kind of weather requires nothing more than taking care of it well. Even better news, we have got you covered. Below you will find detailed tips for taking very good care of your car air conditioning system.
Experts say that a car air conditioning system can only decrease the temperature by 40 degrees Fahrenheit. So if your car is too hot, it will not cool down easily unless you drive a lot to circulate air inside. This situation puts a lot of pressure on the AC.
Therefore, if you can avoid making your car’s interior too hot, your car AC will automatically have to work less. Find a parking spot which will provide a good heat shield to your car.
Ventilate And Avoid Pre-Cooling:
In the summers, you cannot always avoid your car sitting in the sun, no matter how smartly you try to park. You need to blow out all the hot air from the interiors before you start your car AC to protect it. If your car has the “outside air mode”, use it. Otherwise, open all the windows, then start your car engine and switch on the blower fan at the maximum speed. Close the windows only after driving a minute or two and then turn on the AC.
This being said, remember to avoid pre-cooling. It may be more comfortable for you if you can get inside an already cool car, but running your car air conditioner when the car is not moving may destroy the system by reducing your car’s battery life. Air conditioning only works best when there is good airflow, so only switch it on after you start driving.
Use Heat Shield Glass On Windows:
After switching on the car air conditioning, you need to shut down all the windows of your car for better functioning of the AC. Nevertheless, the heat from the outside cannot be completely prevented with regular window glasses. The hotter your car is, the more your AC has to work, and the more pressure it will have to take.
Reflective heat sleeves are a genius solution to this. They reduce heat gain on the glass and minimize heat transmission to the car’s interior. This way, your car interior stays cooler, and your AC takes less load to reach the optimum cooling temperature.
Cover all the windows, especially the windscreen, with these heat shield glasses – both when you are driving and when your car is parked. However, it is important that you choose a good quality heat shield sleeve. These might cost a bit more than the net screens, but consider this as a one-time investment which will save you a lot in the long run.
Use An Ac Curtain:
A genius way to cool yourself more and at the same time cut costs for car air conditioning is using an AC curtain, a transparent plastic sheet, to separate the front and the rear seats when the passengers are only on the front seat. This way, your AC will have to work less to cool faster as well as need to run less.
Go Easy On The Accelerator:
Your car air conditioning works on engine power, and so does the accelerator. If you accelerate too quickly, the power is shared between the two, and your AC cannot function too well. So when you have the AC running, accelerate gradually instead.
Use The Recirculation Feature:
The recirculation feature is added in a car simply for the reason that the AC does not have to draw too much hot air from the outside, but can keep recycling only the interior air. So once you have a good enough cooling on the inside, switch on the system. Your AC will have to work less, and so will last longer.
- Consider The Difference Between The Interior And Exterior Temperatures:
The smaller the difference between the interior and exterior temperatures, the less pressure your AC system has to bear. At the same time, it will fall less heavy on the environment. So try not to go too low on the temperature setting.
Start Your Ac At The Lowest Temperature:
When you switch on your air conditioner, start at the lowest point, and then gradually go higher to avoid overloading your system every time.
Keep The Engine Cool And The Radiator Clean:
As the air conditioning system is placed right next to the engine’s radiator, if the engine is hot, it may noticeably affect the performance of the air conditioning, especially in the summer. Clean the radiator every three months as well to keep it from getting extra hot.
Keep A Regular Check On Your Car Parts That Run The AC:
The condenser in your car can get clogged, and the refrigerant liquid can leak. Also, since the AC compressor is usually driven by the engine via a belt, insufficient lubrication or maintenance may lead to failures. Get a routine check of all these systems every month to the very least, and take your car to a professional car air conditioning service center at regular periods, simply to get servicing and get everything running in order.
Clean The Air Filter:
The air filter is one of the integral parts of the air conditioning system in the car, as this keeps the other parts in the system away from dust. Clean the air filter as frequently as needed, and replace it routinely.
Keep The Insides Of Your Car Clean:
Dust and pollutants can get accumulated in the air filter and diminish the performance of your car AC. So to reach the same temperature, it needs to work extra hard which makes it hot and it eventually gives up. So clean the interiors of your car – the seats, carpets, and the mats – regularly.
Work it regularly:
If you plan on not using your car AC for a long time, run it at least for 10 minutes every week. This maintains the gas pressure to keep the compressor working properly. When you do this, be sure to turn it to its highest fan speed and coolest setting.
Also, run the defrost mode for about 5 to 10 minutes. This prevents mildew and cleans out excess moisture, which can lead to unsavoury odours in your car.
In order to keep your summer best friend running at top performance, always be on the lookout for any abnormality; and more importantly, make sure you heat shield your car. Nevertheless, there are too many scammers out there who can sell you low quality or fake products. So always buy your heat shield products only from a reputed company, and make sure you test it out before leaving the shop.