How to stay cool in a van with no air con

Published:  07 August, 2018

Van drivers who are busy at work this summer are being advised on how they can keep cool in their vehicles without having to rely on air con.

The motoring experts behind van leasing company LeaseVan.co.uk have revealed their seven top tips for keeping cool and avoiding heat-related illnesses caused from working in extreme temperatures during the summer.

On a hot, sunny day, no-one wants to be sweating buckets in a van, but sadly this is often inevitable as jobs still have to be done.

Whilst most modern vans will be fitted with a sufficient A/C system, drivers going about their work day without this perk will have to find alternative means to keep cool and comfortable in the heat.

Tim Alcock from LeaseVan.co.uk said: “Many people tend to think that because they are sat in the van driving from job to job, they’ll be adequately sheltered from the sun’s rays – but the heat can still have a nasty effect.

“Not only does it make travelling uncomfortable, it can also leave you feeling dehydrated, tired and dizzy from heat exhaustion.

“Combine this with having to sit and drive for longer periods of time – which is made all the worse if you factor in traffic jams – then your long-awaited trip could quickly turn sour.

“Drivers with vans that have air con tend to rely on it a little too heavily in the heat, but at low speeds, air-con can increase fuel consumption by as much as 20%.

“There are other cost-effective ways to keep your van cool, which we’d recommend using beside air-con, or in place of it if your vehicle doesn’t have it fitted.”

1. Hang a wet rag over the middle vent of the van

The air that blows through will be much cooler, but make sure you have a few wet rags ready to replace it with as it will dry out quite quickly. Also remember to take them out of your van and wash them afterwards, to prevent mildew.

2. Drive with wet hair

As the moisture evaporates, your scalp will cool off, bringing down the temperature of your whole body.

3. Freeze water bottles to use as ice packs

Wrap a frozen bottle in a towel and rest it against your seat behind your neck. Once it thaws, you’ll have ice cold water to drink and cool off too.

4. Park in the shade

There’s nothing worse than climbing into a boiling hot van at the end of the day, so be mindful of where you leave your vehicle. Under trees is the obvious choice – but you can also try to find a larger van or lorry to park beside for shade.

5. Use a dashboard cover

You won’t feel as overwhelmed by the heat if you don’t have to touch hot vinyl surfaces, so use a fabric or upholstered dashboard cover to protect sensitive vinyl from sun damage that can cause cracking and fading.

6. Keep windows slightly cracked

It’s obviously not a good idea to leave your windows all the way open but leaving just a small crack will promote ventilation and help to keep your van cool – just check to be sure that you can’t fit your arm through.

7. Get a solar-powered mini-fan

A solar-powered fan can make all the difference, even on the hottest summer days.

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