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How hot does it get in a car

Updated on July 30, 2012

On a sunny day, how hot can it really get inside a car?

As I was walking into the mall last weekend, I couldn't believe how hot it was outside. I had just came from a nicely air conditioned car that was pumping out icicles from the dash vents, as I shut off the car and opened the door to start walking towards the mall, I couldn't believe how hot it was. It was so hot that my forearms were wet with sweat in about 45 seconds after leaving the vehicle.

I was walking by a car parked outside the entrance of the mall, I noticed that there was a child in a car seat, with two other children in the back seat of the car as well. The windows were rolled about a quarter of the way down, and the kids were loud and yelling at each other, I couldn't help but imagine they were yelling for help because of how hot it was in the car.

I immediately went into the mall and let the authorities know what I had seen and I explained how it needed to be addressed quickly, in my opinion, a parent was playing the role of an idiot, or they had a lot on their mind and weren't thinking about how hot it was.

Hot inside a car, two days in a row

The very next day, it was just as hot, it felt as though my sandals were sticking to the pavement as I walked across the parking lot. As I walked by a car, there was a huge pitbull in the front seat barking at me, he was so big that the car was shaking as he moved from window to window, but as you probably guessed it, the windows were open about a quarter of the way down.

I was thinking to myself, that this dog wanted to eat me alive, but, yet I felt like going over and letting him out of the vehicle because I felt bad he had a stupid owner, I felt he should go find a smart owner and start a new life.

So that's where I got the idea to write this article, and make a video to prove or show people how fast the temperature can rise to 150 degrees in a car with the windows rolled up, it literally only takes about 4 minutes to reach maximum temperature. I see people leave their pets in a hot car at least once every week, they bring their pets with them to the store for companionship, and little do they realize they're roasting their pet's brains, I feel so bad for the animal, but at that time, my hands are tied, so this is my way of promoting awareness of the dangers of pets in hot cars. I sweat my butt off making the video, but I have hands and I could let myself out before my brain started roasting.

My experience with cars, and how hot they can get inside

As a mechanic, I'm in and out of cars about 30 times a day, cars that have been sitting in the sun and baking for hours, the hottest recorded temperature inside a car at our shop was 178 deg with the windows rolled up, you literally could fry an egg on the dash, in fact, one of the techs use to warm his leftovers on his dash about 30 min before lunch just to prove a point. The reason I did this test and made this video is to educate people about how hot the inside of a car can get, even on a partly sunny day.

The temperature in a vehicle can rise to 150 deg very quickly with the windows roll up all the way, it only takes about 5 minutes to reach max temperature. If you own a dark colored car with a dark interior, the temperature can rise even quicker and to a hotter degree, so think before you leave anything in the car on a hot day, even if it's a plant, and never leave your ice cream in the car on a hot day after grocery shopping, it just might melt, and you don't want that.

How Can You Keep Your Car Cooler?

Here are a few things you can do to keep your car cooler in the hot months:

  • Keep your windows open about two inches
  • Use a sun shade on the windshield
  • Tint your windows
  • Use sun shades on your windows
  • Park in the shade

Here's how you can keep your pet cooler

  • Bring a pet cooling bed
  • Have plenty of cold water for your pet
  • Have a crate cooling fan to keep the air circulating
  • Use a cooling collar for your pet
  • Keep the air conditioning running while you run into the store (If you must)
  • Park in the shade

Help Me and a Pet Out

So do me a favor, if you know people who own pets, children, elderly parents or any other living thing that they like to leave in the car on a hot day, send them this article/video. All kidding aside, the temperature inside a car on a hot day can be dangerous, and as you can see by my stories, there are still some people who just don't get it, so spread the word and share this on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or through email, you just might save someone, or their pet. Leave a comment or a story, the more we get the word out about the dangers of heat inside vehicles on sunny days, the better off everyone will be.


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    • eddiecarrara profile image

      Eddie Carrara 4 years ago from New Hampshire

      Thanks point2make,

      I'm in and out of cars all day long, and on hot day it's brutal, even with the windows down, cars still get extremely hot inside. Thanks for the comment and the vote :)

    • point2make profile image

      point2make 4 years ago

      Wow! I had no ideas that temperatures could reach 150 degrees so quickly. Excellent hub....very informative and a little scary. It is amazing how stupid and cavalier some people can be with the lives of their children and pets. voted this hub up.

    • eddiecarrara profile image

      Eddie Carrara 4 years ago from New Hampshire

      Thanks Bill,

      With all the news coverage about people and pets who have died in cars on hot days, you would think people would catch on. I wanted to do my own experiment and put it on video just to prove a point.

      I appreciate your comment and the vote, take care for now.

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Eddie, If people knew exactly how hot it can get inside a car in the summer I think they would do things differently when traveling with kids and pets. Good for you for reporting the two incidents. your video speaks volumes.

      Thanks for reminding us all of this very important issue. I cringe when I here on the news that a child or pet died from being left in the car. This should never happen.

      VU, sharing ,etc. Great job.

    • eddiecarrara profile image

      Eddie Carrara 5 years ago from New Hampshire

      Thanks Ellandriel,

      With all the new information coming out about the dangers of leaving your pets and children in the car on hot days, you would think people would be more cautious, nope!

      I was curious to see just how hot it got inside a car on a mild day, I wasn't surprised by my results.

    • Ellandriel profile image

      Ellandriel 5 years ago from Portugal

      Children inside cars it's getting usual nowadays, how can people be so careless?

      And animals? Dogs can die for being just a few minutes inside a car! They have heat spikes and it's over, I saw that about every day in my internship in the veterinarian hospital.

      Thank you for reminding people, it will make a difference for at least some people, will remember your hub!

    • eddiecarrara profile image

      Eddie Carrara 5 years ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Prakash,

      Thank you for the vote and comment, the video should start playing automatically when you click on the hub, strange??? Thanks for the heads up :) Take care Prakash

    • Prakash Dighe profile image

      Prakash Dighe 5 years ago from Dallas, Texas, USA

      Gosh Eddie, I didn't know temperatures shot up so fast! I do hope your hub increases awareness amongst the readers. I somehow could not open the video. Thanks for sharing some great information - voted up!