Stay Cool on the Road with an Air Conditioning Check-up | Scott's Fort Collins Auto

Stay Cool on the Road with an Air Conditioning Check-Up

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Woman that is trying to cool off after getting inside a car with air conditioning.

If you’ve ever had to hop into a car parked in the sun on an August afternoon, you know how much you depend on automotive air conditioning. The blistering heat – even here in Colorado where humidity levels remain relatively low – can be unbearable. If your car has air conditioning, you probably take it for granted. If it doesn’t, you definitely notice. Learn more about how car air conditioning works and why you should occasionally bring your car to Scott’s Fort Collins Auto & Repair for a recharge!


Your Car and Summer Heat

It can only take a few minutes for a car to go from nice and pleasant to unbearably hot if it’s left out in the sun. You know this if you run errands in the summer. Studies show that a car sitting in 95-degree heat can end up with air that is around 116 degrees inside. The record is 130 degrees. That’s not including how hot your seats or steering wheel can get, which can reach temperatures up to 107 degrees to the touch. That is why sitting on leather seats can feel like they are burning you in the summer.


A blast of cold air can quickly make the temperature into something pleasant. However, that’s only if you have air conditioning in your car to make the air more bearable. Even if you don’t have air conditioning and you resort to rolling the windows down, that only helps to a degree. There is only so much cooling down that can happen when the air hitting you from outside is hot just like it is inside the car.


Close-up view of the air conditioning unit buttons in a car.

Is Hot Air Dangerous?

Not only can hot air inside a car be very unpleasant, but it can actually be deadly if you’re stuck in a car. Have you ever noticed how the heat can make your body feel tired? If you’ve never noticed this, try sunbathing on a hot day on the beach (making sure to wear sunscreen). Your body starts to get tired the longer you are in the hot sun because your body is working overtime to keep your internal temperature consistent. If your body is baking in the heat, you’re expending tons of energy just to ensure your body’s homeostasis.


That is how heatstroke can happen so easily. Your body slowly gets tired, and the longer you’re outside, the quicker you can dehydrate from losing water through sweating. When people are tired, they may not even notice the effects of heatstroke happening, and it can be deadly. This is why you never want to leave a child in a car unattended, especially one that is strapped in a seat. In fact, you never want to leave a child out in the hot sun, hot car or heat at all if you can help it. Children left in cars will have their breath turn into extra humidity, which can raise a car’s internal temperature even more.


Even adults can suffer heat stroke and negative health symptoms (such as nausea if they are out in a hot car too long. This is just another reason why having air conditioning in your car is so important.


Benefits of Air Conditioning

After the concept of the car was invented, the Ford Motor Company started manufacturing the Model T car to the masses in 1908. However, these cars did not come with air conditioning, as the system had not been invented yet. Around 1939, cars started being manufactured with air conditioning systems. However, these systems were bulky and it would take several more decades to actually perfect air conditioning in cars.


However, all the efforts made by countless people over the years were not in vain. It’s standard for modern cars to come with efficient air conditioning systems. You probably wouldn’t buy a new car if it didn’t have a working system. Why? Because there are so many benefits of having an air conditioning system:

  • You get to have a comfortable driving experience and can set the temperature to the degree that is perfect for you.
  • Drivers can escape the unforgiving summer heat, especially in desert areas.
  • There is less moisture in the air (meaning it’s not muggy) because the air conditioning is actually “conditioning” the air for you.
  • You stay more alert. The heat can wear you down and make you tired, whereas an air-conditioned car won’t do that to the driver.
  • Drivers can control a window fogging up from heat or cold with this system.


Close-up view of the air conditioning vents in a car, one of which has a flower on it.

Air Conditioning Repair

Don’t spend your days out in the summer heat when you have a car that is capable of an air conditioning system! Not only will this be miserable, but not having air conditioning can really make those summer road trips feel incredibly long, when they’re supposed to be fun! Scott’s Fort Collins Auto can provide evacuation and recharge service for your air conditioning system if it is no longer working in your vehicle. This involves visual inspection of the belt and other accessible parts for damage. We also do functionality evaluation of the system as a whole, evacuation of refrigerant, a vacuum test and recharge.


If you think your air conditioning in your car may not be functioning correctly or not at all, make sure to schedule an appointment with us. We want you to be cool and comfortable as you enjoy your summer. Call Scott’s Fort Collins Auto today at (970) 682-4202!


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