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  • Writer's pictureAleko Kavouras

The Air Inside Your Vehicle

Updated: Apr 28, 2021

With the lower temperatures here in Maryland this winter many motorists keep their cars warm using the heating system with little ventilation. In the warmer months drivers enjoy the breeze with the windows down, but in the cold months the car’s windows remain closed and the air re-circulates throughout the car. With less ventilation drivers are exposed to pollutants and impurities, but there are things that can be done to limit the amount of pollution in the car.

Let’s look more closely at car pollutants and how to limit them.

Outside Pollutants

When you are driving in traffic your car intakes the surrounding air to be run through the heating or cooling system. On roads with heavy traffic, this air is polluted by exhaust from the surrounding cars. This air then makes its way into your car where it is re-circulated and inhaled by you and your passengers. Traffic lights and busy intersections have an even higher pollution level than the open road, so if you frequently drive through towns you are likely being exposed to even more pollution. During the cold winter months drivers generally don’t open their windows and air out their cars so this pollution lingers in the car.

Pollutants From Inside Your Vehicle

In addition to harmful pollutants outside of your car that make their way inside, new cars have a considerable amount of harmful chemicals can be found in the carpeting, fabrics, cushions and cleaning products used in your car. If you have a newer car, these pollutant levels can be especially high. To help reduce these pollutants, air your car out when driving it by cracking the windows, and avoid areas with high amounts of traffic.

Limiting Exposure

To limit your exposure to harmful pollutants there are several tips you can employ. First, avoiding areas with a high volume of traffic is ideal, however this may not always be practical. If you can’t avoid traffic, make sure to drive at a distance from the car in front of you. When you tail closely behind the car in front of you that car’s exhaust goes directly into your car. When you are driving in areas with very little or no traffic, crack your car’s window to air it out.

Car pollution is unavoidable, but by airing your car out at the appropriate times and following some simple tips you can reduce your exposure. If you have reason to believe your car is creating more pollution than it should be, or that it is intaking more pollution than it should be, call us at Hillmuth Auto Care today. We are a trusted Maryland mechanic and we can take a look at your car to ensure it is functioning properly.

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