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Air conditioners in EVs may not be that dirty of a secret

Reports that the leaking of a certain type of air-conditioning fluid used in electric vehicles may help cause global warming may be a bit of hot air. The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) is addressing stories saying that HFC-134a, also known as R-134a, may nullify the benefits of driving electric because of its potential effect on the ozone. The UCS debunks those stories.

California leaves "cool cars" regulation out in the, ahem, cold

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) has announced that the "cool cars" regulation has been canceled. "Cool cars" tried to reduce the need for air conditioning in new vehicles by mandating that their windows reflect or absorb a portion of the heat-producing rays from the sun.

Efficient air conditioning could potentially save billions of gallons of gas

The U.S. Department of Transportation and National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) are hard at work developing new ways to make the air conditioners more efficient and reduce the interior tempteratures in our cars and trucks. What's the big deal? Apparently, a whopping seven billion gallons of gasoline are used each and every year in the United States alone to run automotive AC units, which repr

EU calls for new eco-friendly air conditioners by 2011

Following a directive first created back in 2006, the European Union has passed down a ruling that would force European automakers to find a new refrigerant to use in their vehicle's air conditioners. There's some debate as to the timing of this mandate, as it's no secret that most automakers are in a fight to just remain in business.

Automakers work on sustainable air conditioning

It wasn't all that long ago that the auto industry was under fire for its use of ozone-depleting chemicals in its air conditioning systems. To curb those fears, the older R-12 refrigerant was replaced with R-134a refrigerant. Interestingly enough, CO2, long associated with harmful automobile emissions, is being touted as a desirable natural replacement for the chemical s

Are high gas prices making your car sick?

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 bl

Mobile Air Conditioning Society Worldwide: recycle your refrigerant

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

Mythbusters' mistakes in AC vs windows down episode

Recently, I wrote an article on the debate; do you get better mileage with AC on and windows up or AC off and windows down? A comment in the article said a Mythbusters episode found you could get better mileage with AC off and windows down. The way Mythbusters tackled the myth in that episode was just horrible. The myth wa

Gas saving myth: Turn off your AC?

Fueleconomy.gov says "operating the air conditioner on 'Max' can reduce MPG by roughly 5-25 percent compared to not using it." Consumer Reports and Edmunds.com says you will lose 1 MPG. That's the low end of the government estimate of 5 percent if you have a car that does 20 MPG. Is it fair to call it a myth, as Lascelles Linton