How to optimise your air conditioning

As the weather starts to get warmer, car interiors can heat up incredibly quickly. With these tips and tricks, we’ll help ensure that you’ll stay cool behind the wheel whilst saving energy and looking after our car-sharing community.

There’s nothing worse than when a car has been left in the sun all day and as you open the door you are greeted by an even hotter gush of air. When you’re annoyed and overheated, mistakes when driving can happen. So to help you get to your destination quickly and relaxed, we’ve put together this guide to maximising your air conditioning on the road.

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Vent before using the AC

Naturally, when arriving at a hot car the first thing on most people’s minds is getting the air conditioning up and running. However, not being so hasty pays off. Before you start your journey, open all the doors and let the hot air out of the car. This will only take a minute and makes a huge difference to the initial performance of your AC. If you don’t want to wait, open all the windows for the first few minutes of your trip to replace the hot air before touching the AC dial.

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Close windows and adjust fans

Once the accumulated hot air has been vented out of the car, the air conditioning can be switched on. For full effectiveness, all windows should now be closed. To avoid catching a cold or getting dry eyes, never direct the flow of air directly at your face. You can adjust the fans on all SHARE NOW models to aim in various directions and at different speeds. Play around and find a combination that works for you.

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Circulate air first, then add fresh

You have two options when it comes to how to supply your car’s AC unit with air. In order to cool the air in your car quickly, you’ll want to use circulated air first. This means that air is recycled from the cabin back into the AC, getting cooler and cooler each time it passes through. Once your desired temperature has been reached, however, you can opt to add in a fresh air supply. The air conditioning won’t have to work as hard to maintain a cool air temperature as it does to reduce one.

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Find your feel-good temperature

When it comes to car temperature, everyone has a very personal sense of what is comfortable and what isn’t. However, a general feel-good temperature is between 22° and 25°. It can be tempting to just use the minimum temperature setting on a hot day to cool the car quickly, but you don’t really want to be deviating more than 6° from the outside temperature. You’ll only end up getting cold and warming the car again, wasting energy. Nobody wants to drive in a fridge.

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Think about the home straight

How many times have you reached your destination and simply turned off the car and the air-conditioner, locked up and been on your way? We’ve all done it. However, the sensible approach is to turn off your AC a few minutes before the end of your trip. This allows the air conditioning unit to dry off and air out, avoiding unpleasant odours that can build up if this is not done. The car won’t have time to heat up again before you get out, and you’ll be keeping the AC unit nice and dry and fresh.

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Remember: sharing is caring

Car-sharing is all about community. We love the fact that by using services like SHARE NOW, we are sharing more and owning less. Our final tip is to consider this whenever ending your trip. We’re not suggesting for a minute that you should start doing laps of your city trying to find a cool place to park, but on those occasions when you do have the option of parking in the shade or parking in the sun, think about your car-sharing community and how things are just better when we all work together.

David McCourt

David McCourt

Sr. Editorial Content Strategist

"Own less, share more."

David is on a mission to improve the quality of life in cities through modern mobility solutions.