Did you know you know that the most significant exposure to air pollution might be your daily commute to work? Believe it or not, the air inside your car can contain a significant amount of pollutants and carbon monoxide, especially when you’re stuck in traffic. However, there are ways to minimize these risks and protect your respiratory health.
Understanding Cabin Air Quality
There are a number of things that can affect your cabin air quality, such as heavy traffic, ventilation fan speed, vehicle speed, outside air pollutants, and the number of passengers in the car. Although clean cabin air filters go a long way in preventing large particles like pollen and dust from entering the cabin, they’re not as effective against many of the minuscule particles emitted by vehicle emissions.
If you spend a significant time driving or are stuck in stop-and-go traffic during rush hour, it’s important to be aware that your cabin can accumulate unhealthy levels of particulate matter and gases. In addition to being harmful to your respiratory health, gases like carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxide can infiltrate the cabin and affect your cognitive abilities—which can put you at a higher risk of getting into an accident.
Using the Air Recirculation Mode
The next time you find yourself stuck in traffic or driving in an area with high pollution sources, remember to close your windows and turn on your ventilation system’s air recirculation mode. Studies have shown that this can reduce the amount of pollutants entering your vehicle by as much as 20% in congested traffic.
It’s best to use the recirculation mode at the lowest fan speed for only a few minutes, as using it for extended periods can increase carbon dioxide levels in the cabin, especially if you have multiple passengers. If you need to use the recirculation mode for a longer duration, you can increase the fan speed. Since vehicle cabins aren’t airtight, a higher fan speed will give you better ventilation than a lower speed—but it will be noisier!
Keep Your Vehicle’s Ventilation System in Top Condition
Although we’ll no doubt see a day when smart vehicles automatically clean the air inside your car, it’s important to take steps to maintain good air quality in your cabin. Your daily commute or long trips shouldn’t compromise your well-being, so make a conscious choice to breathe clean air while you’re on the road!
Whether you need a cabin air filter replacement or your ventilation system needs repairs, Accurate Automotive Attention is here to help. Contact us today to schedule an appointment at one of our two convenient locations!
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