Thursday, July 24, 2008

Drive Without AC? I Do It.

The most common response I get when I tell people that I don't drive with AC unless I'm on the high way is a very surprised look followed by, "Why in the world would you do that to yourself?" I just smile because, yes it is hot sometimes, but for the most part I really enjoy doing it. And I'm one of those weirdos who likes to be warm - or hot - so unless it's really hot I'm usually not all that bothered.

Yes, you might get a little sweaty, but think of how wonderful it is to feel the wind blowing through your hair during your morning commute. Or you could be like me and use it instead of your blow dryer (I think my air looks better overall when I let it air dry instead of subjecting it the heat of the dryer everyday).

Here are my tips to drive with the windows down and still be pretty and not smelly when you get to the office:
  • Get a good deodorant.
    • I am in love with my Kiss My Face deodorant. It won't stop you from sweating, but it will block any and all smells from exiting your armpit.
    • My mother swears by baby powder and it's ability to soak up your sweat whether it be on your feet or under your arms.
  • Wait to put on your make-up.
    • I have ridiculously oily skin, which means that foundation has a tendency to turn orange and streak down my face when I get sweaty.
    • Waiting until you get to the office means that you can have the chance to wash your face and give your make-up a chance to stay on your face without streaking.
  • Keep a hairbrush in the car at all times.
    • If you drive with your windows down, your hair will probably need to be brushed when you get to where you're going (if you have long hair, that is).
    • Find a small hairbrush to keep in your glove box or in your purse.
And here are some positive aspects of driving with your windows down that you may not have thought of before:
  • You can make friends with the people in the cars that you sit next to you at long stoplights.
  • You could stumble upon your next favorite band thanks to the guy that's playing his music really loudly.
  • You could have a stoplight dance party to the music that the guy next to you is playing really loud (yes, I have done this before)
  • If you sing along to your music in the morning, you might find yourself next to a record producer at a stop light you will hear your lovely vocal stylings and will sign you on the spot for a million billion dollar contract. How about them apples?
You also might want to stop and consider the fact that you will be saving gas when you shy away from using the AC when you're running your errands around town. By own calculations, my 4-door sedan usually gets 200 miles to a half tank. The last time I filled up I payed close attention to my AC usage (as well as some other hypermileing tricks which you can read up on here) and managed to get an extra 40 to my half tank of gas. 40 miles! I have to say, I am willing to get a little sweaty if I can get that many more miles a gallon overall.

If you really can't bring yourself to endure the heat of the afternoon, which I understand (it's 93 degrees here today), then consider just doing for your morning commute. Usually at the time that you're driving to work it's just starting to get warm out which means that the breeze from your windows should still be kind of cool. If you look a little wind-blown when you get to the office, brush your hair and you should be good to go. I bet you'll see an increase in your gas mileage too. Even if it ends up only being a small jump, a little is better than nothing!

1 comment:

An open minded big oil employee said...

Be careful about the type of car that you have. Some models create so much drag when the windows are down that they actually get worse gas mileage than if they are driven with windows up abd AC on. Just a thought.

more info:
http://www.slate.com/id/2194536/

http://www.dailyfueleconomytip.com/uncategorized/fuel-economy-tip-roll-the-windows-up/

And this one, who says it' so close it doesn't matter, but see paragraph #4
http://blog.everydayscientist.com/?p=861