Car Air Conditioning Tips After the Heatwave
If you’ve been out and about in your Land Rover this summer, it’s likely that your air conditioning has had a lot of use! If the heatwave has given your cooling system a run for its money, make sure you look after your air-con and keep it working effectively with these simple maintenance and operational tips.
First, let the hot air escape
Your air conditioning system works by pumping the hot air out of your car, and replacing it with cooled air. On a super-hot day like the ones we’ve experienced this summer, we all know how uncomfortably high the temperatures can get inside a parked car. But don’t rush to switch on the air con as soon as you get into the driving seat. Instead, open all the doors for a few minutes to allow the hot air to disperse, before turning on the cooler. This will make less work for your air conditioning system and help it to last longer.
Keep the windows up
Once you’re on the move, it’s a different story. Yes, it’s wonderful to feel the wind in your hair as you rush along on a hot summer’s day – but if you drive with open windows, all that lovely cooled air created by your AC system will simply escape outside the vehicle. Decide on open windows or air con, but try not to use both at once.
Use it all year round
It might not occur to you to switch on the air con during a winter journey, but regular use will help your air conditioning system to function more reliably. Switching it on before travelling on a cold day will also help you to tackle issues like condensation and humidity.
Top up your refrigerant
Feeling warmer than usual even when the air con is on? The liquid that makes your air conditioning work needs topping up every now and then. So if the atmosphere inside your Land Rover just isn’t as cool as it was, you may need to recharge your coolant. You can do this yourself (wear goggles to protect your eyes) or get a technician to check your coolant levels the next time you visit your local Land Rover garage.
Take notice of any bad smells
If you find there is a bad smell whenever your air conditioning is turned on, it’s important to investigate the cause. It’s probably due to a build-up of dirt, mould and bacteria within the system. You might need a new filter, or the drainage system might need checking. If you smell gas, you could have a gas leak, which needs attention ASAP.
Get it checked
Air conditioning is not usually included in a standard service, so make a point of getting your AC system checked periodically. This will involve replacing filters, cleaning, topping up coolant and a number of performance tests to keep the system running at its full potential. Next time you’re due for a yearly service, ask your garage to add an air conditioning check.
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