How to cool a car without air conditioning – the 6 best tips

UK weather: Met Office forecasts spike in temperatures

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The temperature is heating up and there will be highs of 27C around the UK this week. If you’re dreading hopping in your car in this weather, don’t worry! Motoring experts from car rental comparison site have revealed six ways motorists can stay cool behind the wheel without A/C.

Most modern cars are fitted with efficient A/C systems, but if your car isn’t so new… you probably dread the summer months.

A spokesperson from said: “Air-conditioning is standard in cars these days but there are still plenty of vehicles on our roads which lack the luxury of an efficient A/C system.

“It could be because they’re a classic motor manufactured back in the days before air-conditioning came in or it could be simply because their unit isn’t working.

“Whatever the reason if a vehicle doesn’t have air conditioning they can become unbearable on a hot day.

“It can make any journey intolerable and can leave driver and passengers feeling dehydrated and irritable – especially if traffic jams are involved.

“Travelling like this for long periods can even be dangerous, but drivers can take some simple steps to make themselves and their passengers more comfortable.”

Here are six steps to face the heat in your car this summer.

How to cool a car without air conditioning


Parking in shaded areas will help keep a car cool, so watch where you leave your car!

The experts said: “Under trees or close to tall buildings can be effective but if these are not available then a parked lorry could be just as good.

“If a car is left for some time, drivers should consider the position of the sun and give some thought to where their car will have the most shelter.”


Are you supposed to leave the windows closed or open?

The expert said: “On a hot day a car can act in a similar way to a greenhouse, with sun and heat coming into the car and being trapped, thus allowing it to get hotter and hotter.

“Leaving windows slightly open allows some of the hot air to escape, and if there’s any wind it will also help cool down the interior.”

Dashboard cover

Don’t burn your hands on your steering wheel – invest in a dashboard cover to protect your car and bands.

The spokesperson advised: “A fabric or upholstered dashboard cover can protect items such as the steering wheel from the heat.

“It will also protect the sensitive vinyl from cracking and fading.”


Solar-powered mini-fans can be purchased online for as little as £5 each, and they really help.

Mini fans are great as they use the sun to cool the car and you.

Wet cloth

You’ve heard of the ice bucket in front of a fan at home trick, and the wet cloth in the car hack works in the same way.

The expert said: “Placing a wet cloth over the middle vent of the dashboard will help cool the air that blows through but drivers should ensure they have replacements to hand as they will dry out very quickly.

“It’s also essential to remove them from the car and wash them afterwards to prevent mildew.”

Water bottles

Drivers can wrap a frozen water bottle in a towel and rest it against the seat behind their neck.

The expert said: “Not only will this cool the driver down but they can also drink the water when the ice melts.”

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