Summer Heat = Summer Woes

Posted on August 8, 2012 by - Also by this author

Vehicle air-conditioners just can’t keep up with triple-digit temperatures!
 
As I write my blog today, the temperature outside is 106 degrees. That’s the downside to living in Bakersfield, Calif.

The high temperature combined with lots of idling time wreaks havoc on the vehicles from an overheating standpoint to the A/C system just not being able to keep up. While idling, the A/C systems don’t pump the air out as cool as when you are rolling down the road. So, passengers enter a large vehicle such as an Excursion or a bus and complain that it is warm and want to know if we can cool it down.

Of course we can. Once the client shuts up about the heat and we can get going, the vehicle will cool down. However, it takes a while depending on the vehicle. If we have a 55-passenger bus that is forced to idle for more than 30 minutes before loading passengers, the interior becomes warm. Now, if you add 50 people sporting a temperature of 98.6 degrees, this adds heat to the interior and makes it that much warmer and causes the cool down to take longer.

Depending upon coachbuilders, some beef up the A/C systems and some don’t. We were unfortunate enough to buy a 20-passenger Excursion limousine that simply uses the factory-installed system to cook a vehicle that was stretched more than double its original size. While the driver might stay nice and cool, the A/C lines were extended to run from the front unit all the way to the back with tubes extending throughout the coach where air is dispersed. If you are the guy sitting in the very back of the vehicle, you better bring a towel on a day like today.

Then there is the overheating issue. We encourage our drivers to shut the engines down when they will be sitting at the same place for an extended period. However, being realistic, on a day like this, I can’t really expect a driver to deprive himself of A/C when forced to wait for a long period. But, when they sit and idle in the air-conditioned car for a prolonged period, eventually the vehicle will overheat.

This became a problem for us last week when a limo sat waiting at the airport for a flight to arrive. Of course we wanted to keep the air running in the limo so when the passengers got in, it would be nice and cool. The flight was delayed twice by small increments in time but yet enough that the temperature gauge was slowly climbing to the top of the scale. The situation had to be addressed so we ended up sending another limo to the airport. The first driver switched out to the car that just completed a 20-minute freeway drive to get to the airport. It was nice and cool inside by the time it arrived.  Those types of scenarios cost additional money in fuel and wages but the action we were forced to take was necessary to ensure customer satisfaction.
 
Sometimes, I have no idea why I live in Central California. I hate the heat, and baking in Bakersfield when it tops 100-degrees, is just pure misery.

— Jim Luff, LCT contributing editor

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More LCT Blog Blog Posts

October 1, 2012

Event Management

Don't let your guests down. Here are some things to think about before the event starts.

September 26, 2012

October LCT Mag Focuses On Customer Service

ISSUE PREVIEW: What does he think? What did she really say? Are you channeling your customers? In the October 2012 issue of LCT Magazine, you’ll get a complete primer on how to read and please your
September 26, 2012

Driverless Cars Legalized In California

With no need for people to operate vehicles, how can limo companies adapt to the new world of transportation?
September 26, 2012

Manners Still Matter On Social Media

It has never before been easier for businesses to share information, insight and intimacy with consumers; it has also never been easier to offend them. Read more to learn how to avoid a social media faux pas.
September 20, 2012

My First Encounter With The 2013 Lincoln MKT Town Car

On my trip to Chicago last week for the 2012 BusCon Expo, I had the pleasure of experiencing a new ride — the 2013 MKT Town Car.
See More

Facebook Comments ()

Comments (0)

Post a Comment

Submit

Blogs

See More

See More

See More

See More

LCT Store

LCT Magazine - September 2016 $12.95 COVER STORY: * How Do We Max Our Markets? * *



Connect

Experience the three annual industry events for networking for business, showcasing vehicles and products, and getting the tools for success.

Read About Your Region

What’s Happening Near You?
Click on any state to see the latest industry news and events in that region.

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment

TruckingInfo.com

THE COMMERCIAL TRUCK INDUSTRY’S MOST IN-DEPTH INFORMATION SOURCE

Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Metro Magazine

Serving the bus and passenger rail industries for more than a century

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

Please sign in or register to .    Close