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Friday, July 15, 2011

Minimizing Air Conditioner Usage for MPG Boost

Minimizing A/C use

I have had a rental car for the last two days. 2010 Chevy Malibu.

At first, I hated the idea of driving this car. Compared to our 2008 Jetta, I just knew that this car was going to be crap.

However, I am now eating my words.

I am almost completely sold on this car for the simple fact that the A/C system is incredible.

As an efficiency guru, I do my best to minimize A/C usage whenever possible. I do this by recirculating the air in the cabin and toggling the cooling function.

Unfortunately, the Jetta's A/C is kind of crappy to begin with. Secondly, it seems as though the air maintains its coolness for only a short time before it's warm again (with A/C off and circulate on). This frustrates me to no end. It's almost as if the car is poorly sealed or something.

I drove the malibu yesterday for about 30 minutes. With the air circulation on, I turned the A/C on for all of about 2 minutes when I first started driving. THE AIR REMAINED COOL FOR THE REMAINDER OF MY DRIVE.

I guess I'd also attribute a bit of this to the fact that the dash board of the malibu is white/beige and the jetta is dark grey/black.  In fact, the color of the Jetta itself is dark grey compared to the bright white of the malibu.

I am so pissed at my Jetta. So utterly disappointed, especially considering that the car's gaskets aren't even old, it's a 2008.

On an unrelated note, the malibu was also superior in that it is equipped with instant mpg readout on the instrument cluster. I found that the mpgs of the malibu were quite similar to that of the Jetta as well.