A tried-and-true method: Air out your car by rolling down the passenger-side window and fanning the driver-side door to push the hot air out.
On a hot day, getting into your car can be like entering a sauna. Here are five tips for cooling down your car’s interior.
Air out your car
Park in the shade
Pay attention to how the sun travels across the sky (from east to west) in relation to your vehicle, and park accordingly. Trees are a go-to source of shade throughout the day — particularly at high noon — but a tall building or awning can cast a shadow at the right time.
Crack a window
While this may not be the safest choice, a set of window deflectors can help block sunlight while concealing the open window.
Use various covers
Sunshade: If you think you will get caught out in the sun, you can get a sunshade to cover the windshield, reducing its greenhouse effect. Sunshades are often collapsible for easy storage.
Seat covers: Leather seats + a sunny day = an uncomfortable ride. Seat covers put a layer of material between you and the hot leather.
Dashboard cover: Sun rays and heat make your dashboard prone to fading or cracking. Covering it up can protect its longevity.
Steering wheel cover: You want to safely drive without constantly shifting your hand position to avoid burns. Look for a steering wheel cover in a breathable microfiber.
Full-car cover: Without a garage, a full-car cover can be the next best thing to shield your vehicle from the elements. Heat and UV rays can damage the paint, plastic and rubber on your car.
Tint your windows
A more permanent heat management trick is window tinting, done by a professional or at home with a roll of tinted film and a DIY tool kit.
But first, check out the American Automobile Association’s glass and window tinting guide to verify your state’s law on the darkest window tint allowed.
Karl Daum is a writer for BestReviews, a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.
How hot can a car get in the sun?
Cars trap heat like greenhouses, and can get dangerously hot very quickly. A study from Stanford found that on sunny days when temperatures ranged from 72 to 96 degrees, car interiors warmed by an average of 40 degrees in minutes.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, child vehicular heatstroke can occur at 70 degrees.
Pets are equally prone to dehydration and heatstroke; don’t leave them in the car, even if just for a few minutes.