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Drivers Warned Not To Whack the Heating Up: Five Cheap Ways To Keep a Vehicle Warm Overnight

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With temperatures dropping across the UK and fuel prices rising, Graham Conway, Managing Director at Select Car Leasing, shares ways drivers and your car – can stay warm behind the wheel without breaking the bank.

“On frosty cold mornings, many drivers will wake up extra early to whack the heating up in their car. Whilst this won’t consume a significant amount of fuel, it can shorten the life of your engine. 

“After having your vehicle in the cold overnight and warming it up, this can cause extra fuel to go into the combustion chamber, which can leak onto your cylinder walls. 

“Too much fuel on your cylinder walls can dissolve the oil that keeps the cylinders lubricated, damaging crucial components.

“Instead of leaving your car to heat first thing in the morning, it’s advised you keep the warm vehicle overnight, taking the strain off the vehicle and making mornings less stressful.”

Below, Select’s Conway shares five things drivers can do the night before to make icy cold mornings more bearable.

  1. Park Your Car in an Insulated Garage

Whilst not everyone has the luxury of a garage, those that do, make the most of it!

Keeping your vehicle in an insulated space overnight will keep the vehicle from reaching freezing temperatures. Even if the garage is uninsulated, your car will stay warmer than it will out in the open.

An alternative method of insulation is a car cover blanket. Whilst it not only will from scratches caused by bikes, bins, or treacherous weather conditions, it will also reduce the chance of windows frosting over. 

  1. Heated Blankets

Again, if you are lucky enough to have a garage, place some heated blankets across the vehicle’s interior the night before.

A cheap electric blanket (costing around £14) costs approximately 3p an hour to run, equalling around £1.37 if used for seven hours a day.

With this in mind, placing blankets across the seats will help produce heat inside the vehicle and minimize defrosting in the morning.

You can also buy electric blankets that plug straight into your car’s cigarette lighter terminal to keep you toasty until your car warms up. 

  1. Use the Recirculation Button 

Whilst people can assume the recirculation button is only used to circulate cold air around the vehicle; it can also help circulate hot air.

The air recirculation button cuts off the outside air to the inside of the car, helping to recirculate air inside your vehicle.

This effectively will catalyze the hot air circulating the vehicle when the car’s heater is on, helping to heat it more quickly.

  1. Invest in Heated Car Seat Covers

You can buy heated covers for your seats. They include a thermostat that, like any thermostat, will warm the heart to an ideal temperature before turning it off.

When the seat begins to cool down, it will then restart again. These are cost-effective accessories to have, as well as protecting your sets from any dirty hands, accidental spills, crumbs, stains, dirt etc. 

  1. Stock Up on Hand Warming Packets

Especially for children, stock up on hand warmers that are completely self-efficient and keep hands warm during the drive.

You can activate your hand warming packets around 10-15 minutes before getting into the vehicle and place them on the seats before the kids get in. 

Whilst slightly heating the car interior, they will, more importantly, keep little hands cold during the cold journey. 

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Safety reminder – Please buckle up! Seat belts save lives every day. Always wear seat belts and use appropriate restraints for all child passengers.


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