Car temperatures can become deadly in just minutes

Car temperatures can become deadly in just minutes

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - With hot temperatures expected Thursday through Saturday in the Tri-State, we're going to be dealing with some VERY hot cars, but just how hot do cars get? We headed out to the Fox 19 parking deck to find out.

One of the things we always hear is that dark colored cars tend to be hotter than light colored cars. To test this, we used an infrared thermometer gun to measure the surface temperature of a black car and the surface temperature of a white car that had equal exposure to sunlight.
The black car came in with a temperature of 141. The temperature of the white car came in at 111; a thirty degree difference. Those with light colored cars will be cooler, but no one will be comfortable.

While the exterior of cars are hot, the interiors can get even hotter. The darker the color of the car and the darker the seats in the car, the hotter the interior can get.

 We used the thermometer gun to measure the temperature of a black, cloth seat in a silver car. It came in with a reading of 126, about 13 degrees warmer than the exterior of the car.

The rest of the car's interior was hot as well. The black, leather steering wheel cover also came in with a reading of 126. The seat belt buckle came in at 116, cooler likely because it wasn't exposed to direct sunlight.
It does not take long for these temperatures to be reached. When the outside temperature is 90 degrees, in just 10 minutes, the average temperature of a car interior is 109. After 30 minutes, the average temperature is 124.

Temperatures this high can lead to heat exhaustion and heat stroke in minutes, particularly in children, the elderly, and pets. This is why it can't be stressed enough to never leave young children or pets in a parked vehicle for any amount of time on a hot day.
To help limit the stifling heat, park your car in a garage or in a shady spot. Windshield shades are also an effective means of reducing the temperatures inside your vehicle.

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