What a heat wave we have been having! How have you been during this intense heat? Me, I’ve been DoorDashing mostly. Thank God for AC in my car because that wouldn’t have been bearable otherwise. One bad thing though was when the coolness from my car’s AC met the heat from outside, it caused my windshield and windows the fog up. Gotta love the condensation!

Heat Wave Attacks the Hudson Valley and Beyond

Hundreds of temperature records are breaking as extreme heat grips much of the world.  More than 14-hundred records fell this past week. A brutal heat wave still is scorching much of the U.S. Nearly 100 million people are under heat advisory alerts. Cities from the Midwest to New England getting hit with triple-digit temperatures as health related emergency room visit spike. Health officials in New York say heat-related visits are up 500-percent over what they normally see on a typical June Day.

The National Weather Service said a heat advisory is issued when the heat index, the combination of heat and humidity, is predicted to feel like "95 to 99 degrees for two or more consecutive days or 100 to 104 degrees for any length of time." That all being said, what can we do in the Hudson Valley to beat the heat?

How to Best Utilize Your Car's Air Conditioning

So, there is a button in your car by the AC button that has a picture of a car with an arrow kind of spinning around. What is the button you may ask? It is your saving grace in the summer to help make the most of your AC! Most all vehicles have a recirculation button with the AC controls in their cars. But many of us are unsure when to use it. Well, the easy answer is to use it in the summer and turn it off in the winter.

Conor Walsh
Conor Walsh

The main job of the recirculation button is to take the air from within the vehicle and recirculate it instead of drawing air from outside. When we are in the middle of a heat wave, you're not going to want to pull hot air into your vehicle. Using the recirculation feature will get your car cooler and will keep your AC from working too hard. Overall, it will decrease the wear and tear on your AC system.

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Typically, when you are running the AC in your car, you should keep your windows up! Having your windows down while using the AC negates the AC because all the cool air escapes. Do one or the other but not both. However, if your car has been baking in the sun, its better to roll the windows down to release the super hot air inside the car before turning the AC and recirculate on.

Conor Walsh
Conor Walsh

You may also remember last year when the fires from Canada were causing smoke issues here in New York, health experts said to use the recirculate button to make sure you don't breath in the toxic air, and that's true! Any time you are stuck in traffic, be sure to use the recirculate. If you are pulling air from outside, then you are pulling in all the pollutants and carbon monoxide from all the traffic. Studies show that recirculating your AC can cut down on the pollutants entering your vehicle by 20% when stuck in traffic!

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