Modern technology has made summer driving a lot more bearable than it used to be. A working air conditioning system and a battery in good operating condition will get you pretty much anywhere comfortably. For truckers, there are some extra steps that can be taken to maximize comfort and stay cool without needing to run the air conditioner quite as much.
Don’t Skip Your Summer Maintenance
Every trucker should have summer maintenance done as the temperature outside rises. This includes having tires, electrical systems, and air conditioning units inspected, maintained, repaired, or replaced as needed. While maintenance for most of your vehicle’s systems is strictly for keeping your truck operational as you complete jobs, having your air conditioning unit serviced at the beginning of the season will allow you to stay comfortable even when the sun is beating down on you during your afternoon drives.
Everyone loves an ice cold tea or soda every so often, but don’t forget to drink plenty of water. Staying hydrated isn’t just good for keeping cool, it’s a huge benefit for your body. Chugging water all at once, however, can actually do more harm than good. Keep a water bottle on-hand and drink water regularly throughout the day. Remember to avoid dark sodas as much as possible, as these can actually cause you to dehydrate further.
Wear Light Clothing
When the sun is in full force, it can get really hot really quickly as it sits on your skin. Wearing lightly-colored, breathable clothing will allow you to reflect some of that light and maintain a cooler body temperature even when you’re driving in full sun. Avoid dark colors that absorb light, and stay away from heavy fabrics, such as cotton. T-shirts are quick and easy, but many of them are made with heavier fabric that won’t be comfortable during the hottest hours of the day.
Park in the Shade
Whenever you’re making a stop, look for shade. This won’t be an option every time, but take the chance whenever you get it. Parking in the shade will keep the interior of your cab cooler, which will keep your air conditioning from having to work too hard and you won’t be getting into a searing hot vehicle. You should also keep a sun shade on-hand for this same reason. Parking in the shade will cover the exterior of the cab in shade, so the truck isn’t absorbing heat. It’s more effective than a sun shade because of this, but a sun shade will still keep the cabin cooler than it would be without one if you can’t find any shade.
Put On Sunscreen
When you’re driving in full sunlight for days on end, you are being exposed to a lot of sun. Windows do filter out some sunlight, but not all of it. Put on some sunscreen in the morning before you hit the road, focusing on any areas where you’ll have exposed skin, such as your arms and hands.
Adjust Your Schedule
Another way to beat the heat is to adjust your driving hours to account for the blistering temperatures that will be at their peak during the afternoon. You can start driving earlier, take the afternoon to rest, then drive into the night a bit. This can help you avoid the hottest hours of the day, but it splits up your sleep schedule so it’s not a good option for everyone. Some drivers may also choose to switch over to a night schedule to avoid daytime traffic and the worst of the heat, but don’t do this without knowing how to drive safely at night.
MIDDLETON & MEADS IS YOUR ONE-STOP-SHOP FOR ALL OF YOUR VEHICLE’S NEEDS.
Need to repair your truck or bus? Contact Middleton & Meads today! Middleton & Meads provides quality truck and bus repair, service, and fleet management for the Baltimore, MD area. We have over 90 years of experience in the trucking industry and will provide you with customer service like you have never experienced before! If you are interested in seeing how we can help your business, give us a call at (410) 752-5588 or visit us online today! For more articles and trucking tips, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and LinkedIn.