General Motors' Opel division is adding metaphorical fire to the real dispute over a new air-conditioning refrigerant's potential flammability.
While "sick car syndrome" has been known about for quite some time now, the recent rise in gas prices may be causing a resurgence of sorts to the odd but mostly preventable issue. The cause of the problem is the air conditioning of your automobile, which features an evaporator which can be a haven for fungi, mold and mildew. If the AC unit is not switched on regularly, a buildup of the unwanted guests can be blown out the interior vents of your vehicle, which can then cause all manner of illness
Ahhh, summer. The high gas prices, the sweltering heat. Nothing like hopping into your air conditioned ride for a bit of a cool off. Of course, using the AC can, in some situations, decrease your MPG by 5 to 25 percent. And with those high gas prices, an alternative has got to be available, right? Sweating is one, and automakers like Mitsubishi are working on more efficient AC systems. But what if you want to cool down now without using your old and inefficient system? How about an ice shirt?
Even though the older types of refrigerant like Dichlorodifluoromethane (R-12) have been replaced with newer types like Tetrafluoroethane (R-134a), your car's air conditioning system could still be damaging to the environment. While not as harmful as the older refrigerants, recent research suggests that R-134a refrigerant is collecting in our atmosphere and could be contributing to global climate change. Therefore, the Mobile Air Conditioning Society Worldwide (MACS) has issued a press release,