Temperatures are rising, and Americans across the country are bracing for the impact of summer weather. Milex Complete Auto Care has a rundown of what you need to know to help your vehicle operate efficiently during the sweltering heat.
Sizzling temperatures are in the forecast again this summer. Although rainfall is expected to be higher than normal, hot summer weather is on tap across the U.S., according to the Farmers’ Almanac. High humidity and temperatures over 100°F will make it oppressive in many parts of the country, and heat waves are expected from late July through August in the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic states, an AccuWeather report revealed.
Cold as Ice
As your air conditioning kicks into overdrive, there are important steps you need to take to keep your car cool this summer. Let’s start by taking a crash course on your car’s AC.
The air conditioner in a car works by using a special liquid called refrigerant. It starts with a compressor that squeezes the refrigerant, making it hot and pressurized. Then, it goes to the condenser where it cools down and becomes a liquid. The liquid refrigerant flows through an expansion valve, making it very cold. Next, it passes through the evaporator, which cools the air inside the car. Finally, a fan blows this cool air into the car's cabin, making it more comfortable on hot days. The refrigerant then goes back to the compressor to start the process again.
Many newer car models may have additional features in their air conditioning systems, such as dual-zone climate control, automatic temperature regulation, or advanced air filtration systems.
Heat on the Street
To keep your AC running optimally during hot weather, Milex has some tips you can try.
- Stay up to date on maintenance. One of the best ways to make sure your car runs efficiently in the summertime is to stay on track with maintenance. During your regular maintenance, our technicians will ensure your air filters are clean to maximize airflow. We can also replace or recharge your refrigerant if necessary or spot a leak, which is one of the major causes of an AC malfunction.
- Turn off the stop-start feature. To improve fuel economy, many new cars have an automatic start-stop feature. It may save fuel, but it also turns off your AC’s compressor and can heat your car in no time.
- Don’t crank the AC. Resist the temptation to crank your AC. Your car’s AC recycles the air in your car’s cabin. If you crank the unit immediately after turning on the car, you’ll simply recycle hot air, forcing your car to work harder with little benefit. We recommend turning the fan on high, pulling outside air in, and cooling down the car faster. You can also briefly roll down the car windows to release the hot air. Once the cabin cools down a bit, turn on the AC so it can reach your desired temperature.
- Crack the windows. When your car is parked, crack the windows to allow fresh air to circulate in your vehicle and keep the temperature down.
- Avoid pre-cooling. Don’t use your automatic starter to cool your car down before hitting the road in the summer. Your car’s AC works best when the car is in motion.
It’s also important to make sure your engine stays cool during warm weather. Milex technicians recommend getting the coolant changed every 30,000 miles to prevent contaminants from clogging or overheating your car’s radiator, which is responsible for keeping the engine cool. One of the No. 1 causes of vehicle breakdowns is a cooling system failure.
Stay Road Ready With Milex
When it's time to hit the road, reach out to the experts at Milex. We specialize in keeping you cool when the weather heats up, offering top-notch AC service and maintenance. Locate our nearest branch to ensure you're prepared to enjoy the sunny summer days to the fullest.