Open window or air condition: What uses less fuel?

Summer is approaching and the rise in temperature has begun to be felt. How do we manage to stay cool without significantly increasing fuel consumption?

There are a few days left until summer and the temperature is already flirting with the first 30’s , with the heat in a parked car being even higher. Some drivers think that driving with open windows is right and economical, while others immediately turn on the air condition for greater comfort as they believe that the impact of using the air conditioning system will not bring much change in fuel consumption.

But the truth is somewhere in the middle . When the air condition is activated, the compressor is activated, thus burdening the engine operation. Increased engine performance translates into increased fuel consumption  with the load exceeding even 10%.

That’s why we need to know when to use the air conditioning system properly . Many tests have shown that at speeds greater than 90 km / h, the aerodynamic resistance caused by open windows is greater than the load that the use of air conditioning will cause . On the contrary, at lower speeds, the use of air conditioning will cost us more than the fresh air that will come in through an open window.

Thus we conclude that in urban conditions we prefer to drive with open windows (as long as we feel comfortable with the temperature), while on the highway it is more correct to activate the air conditioning for coolness, comfort and quiet .

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