QOTD: Beating the Heat

Tim Healey
by Tim Healey
qotd beating the heat

It’s hot almost everywhere in this country right now.

Air conditioners are straining. The words “heat dome” are in the news. Climate change is being discussed.

We’re going to ask you, the B and B, a question that can be answered without relating to cars — how do you beat the heat?

Do you crank the A/C in your car, maybe on recirc? Sunroof open but windows up and A/C on? Windows down, even if you have A/C? Or have you bought a convertible?

While we’d like to keep this related to cars, feel free to tell us how you keep cool at home, too. I’m making my two window units work, and they work reasonably well, but they don’t cover the whole place — the kitchen and bathroom aren’t nearly as cool as the living and dining rooms and (thank God) the bedroom.

Still, sometimes I wish I lived in a newer building with central air.

Anyway, tell us how you’re staying cool. Hopefully reading TTAC is part of the deal.

[Image: Wild Jack Photography/Shutterstock.com]

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6 of 68 comments
  • Tankinbeans Tankinbeans on Jun 30, 2021

    When I remember that it's available, I remotely start the car. The other day I got to my car and opened the door the humid, hot air was visibly billowing out for awhile. As for home, we have our weak AC running, a few ceiling fans, and I have an oscillating fan. It's really fun because mom is generally a bit cold, so we can't really turn the AC on too much even if it was in tiptop shape (23 year old mobile home).

    • Dal20402 Dal20402 on Jun 30, 2021

      I have to say that remote start on an EV was just awesome over the heat dome weekend. No exhaust cloud and yet the car was almost fully cool by the time we got in, every time.

  • Jkross22 Jkross22 on Jun 30, 2021

    Beating the heat: If in a car with no a/c, just roll down the windows and yell obscenities. If I see you, I'll nod knowingly and give you a thumbs up. If at home, borrow a friend's pool, or perhaps see if you can buy some time at a public pool.

  • Inside Looking Out Inside Looking Out on Jun 30, 2021

    It is not that hot in Bay Area, So we keep AC off, just turning on ceiling fans. But when we do turn AC on as I said before we set thermostat to 78 degrees.

  • ToolGuy ToolGuy on Jul 02, 2021

    If OEM's knew what they were doing and cared about their customers, your automotive air conditioning system would do the following: A: If the temperature inside the vehicle is higher than outside ambient temperature (very typical with any sun load), start the air conditioning with Recirculation OFF and then automatically switch Recirculation ON when interior temperature crosses below outside ambient. [As it is, most manufacturers will spend extra time (customer comfort) and energy (customer fuel cost) cooling the much hotter interior temperature down to outside temps before further cooling it to the desired set point. There is no appreciable difference in humidity levels (interior vs. exterior) at startup (if your last trip was more than a few minutes ago), so no reason not to do this. And since all the controls are electronic, it's 'only' a logic change.] B: Anyone who knows anything about climate control systems knows that humidity levels play a *huge* role in human comfort. Humidity sensors are incredibly cheap in the context of an automotive HVAC system, and it would be very straightforward to incorporate interior humidity level along with temperature in designing an automatic HVAC system. [As it is, going by temperature alone, your very expensive automatic air conditioning system in your very expensive new car will very often get the settings very wrong for optimizing human comfort during much of the year (shoulder seasons, any time humidity is oppressive but the temperature delta doesn't -quite- make the cutoff to engage a/c, etc.).] This is all very well documented outside of automotive applications. Dear Automotive OEM HVAC Person: Since you have been doing your job exactly the same way for the past 30 years, here are some pretty pictures to help you understand [wikipedia means we are keeping it simple, it doesn't mean that is all there is]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermal_comfort [For those of you responsible for your own residential cooling system, post something like the "Goabroa Mini Hygrometer Thermometer Digital Indoor Humidity Gauge Monitor" (less than 5 bucks shipped from Amazon) next to your home thermostat and you'll see what I'm blabbering on about.]

    • SPPPP SPPPP on Jul 02, 2021

      Good points, but as mobile AC users, we do have both the option to turn recirculation on and off, and the option to open windows. Far and away the best way to go when getting into a hot car is to open at least 2 of the windows, then start the car, run the blower on high while you drive away, turn on the AC if it wasn't on already, then roll up the windows once the air coming out of the vents is cold and the residual hot air in the car is near ambient temp. It only takes 3 or 4 control presses. BMW has been putting a condensation sensor in their cars since at least the E90 generation. It is meant to observe condensation and activate the AC compressor as needed. Only problem is, they seem to always be broken.