How fast can the sun heat a car?

Within an hour, the inside of your car could reach over 100 degrees when left in the sun.

SAN ANTONIO – Within an hour, the inside of your car could reach over 100 degrees when left in the sun.

According to the National Weather Service, a dark dashboard or seat can easily reach temperatures in the range of 180 to more than 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Objects like a dashboard, steering wheel, child seat and more can heat the adjacent air by conduction and convection and also give off longwave radiation which is very efficient at warming the air trapped inside a vehicle.

In 2006, the LA Crosse National Weather Service conducted an experiment testing to see how fast a dark-colored car with untinted windows warmed up when left in the sun.

The air conditioner ran until the interior of the car reached 82 degrees and remained steady, according to NWS. Then a digital thermometer was put in the rear seat, the air conditioner was turned off, and temperature readings were taken every 10 minutes.

The results are as followed:

TIME          INTERIOR TEMPERATURE          AMBIENT TEMPERATURE

1120 AM                  83                           91

1130 AM                  87                           92

1140 AM                  93                           92

1150 AM                 100                          92

1200 NOON           104                          93

1210 PM                 107                          93

1220 PM                 110                          93

1230 PM                 113                          94

1240 PM                 115                          94

1250 PM                 118                          94

100 PM                  120                           94

110 PM                  122                           95

120 PM                  123                           95

130 PM                  124                           95

For additional information on heat and automobile safety, visit the National Weather Service’s website.

 

© 2017 KENS-TV


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