Now that the cold season is coming, car heating is once again gaining prominence on commutes to work, when picking up children or on weekend getaways.
The interior of a vehicle must be at the right temperature to ensure not only the comfort of the occupants, but also optimal driving by the driver.
Excess heat can make you drowsy while driving; so you should not abuse the heating this winter.
Having said that, we are going to answer some basic questions about the operation and efficient use of heating.
Does car heating consume fuel?
Due to the lack of knowledge of how the heating works in cars, some drivers believe that it represents an increase in fuel consumption, such as that caused by air conditioning.
That can lead to limiting your heating usage in a futile attempt to save gas.
However, the reality is that the use of heating has practically no impact on fuel consumption.
This is due to the operation of it.
How does the heating of a car work?
The heating system of cars is based on the use of thermal energy generated by the running engine.
The engine of a running vehicle generates a large amount of heat, which is neutralized by the cooling radiator. When the cooling liquid passes through the conduits inside the engine, it heats up and then reaches the radiator, where it is cooled by the wind generated by the movement of the car or, failing that, by the fan.
The air that passes through the car’s ventilation ducts is heated thanks to the high temperatures reached, so no additional fuel consumption is required. In fact, the energy that heats the heating air would be lost in any other case.
The only expense that can be attributed to heating is that generated by the fan that introduces the air into the ventilation duct of the interior passenger compartment. Said fan works with the energy of the battery, which is fed by the alternator, which does consume fuel although in anecdotal quantities.
When to turn on the car heater?
Taking into account what has been explained in the previous section, it makes no sense to activate the heating at the same time the car engine is started, after it has been at rest.
It will take a few minutes for the motor to reach sufficient temperature for the ventilation air to become significantly warm, especially if we are in winter.
And what is worse!
Turning on the heater prematurely will only move cold air from the outside of the car to the inside or, in the best case scenario, will remove the air already present in the car, when the recirculation system is used.
Turn on the heating a few minutes after you start driving.
That way, you will guarantee that the air introduced is hot from the first moment.
Distributes the heating air to the feet
A very efficient way to distribute the heat from the heater inside the car is to connect the air to the outlet of the feet.
Keep in mind that hot air tends to rise, so plugging in the air from the bottom ensures that the entire car heats up evenly, rather than just the top.
Do not connect to the air conditioning and heating at the same time
Both the air conditioning and the heating system have systems to regulate the amount of air (hot or cold) introduced inside the car.
This is the proper way to regulate the temperature of a vehicle that does not have an air conditioning system.
Unfortunately, some users choose to connect both the air conditioning and the heating system at the same time.
This technique is not only highly inefficient and significantly increases fuel consumption, it can also cause a breakdown.
We hope that with these simple tips you will get the best out of your car’s heating and that you won’t feel cold again during your trips this winter.