Mechanic warns drivers not to use this button on long drives

Written by Henrik Rothen

Oct.25 - 2023 3:51 PM CET

Mechanic warns drivers not to use this button on long drives.

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Scotty Kilmer, a mechanic with a 55-year career and one of the most-watched car channels in America, has issued a warning about a specific button in the car that drivers should avoid using during long journeys.

The button in question is the recirculation button on the car's air conditioning system.

Kilmer explains that while the recirculation function is useful for quickly cooling down the car in hot weather, it can be dangerous during long drives. The reason is that recirculating air can lead to increased levels of carbon dioxide in the car, which in turn can cause drowsiness due to reduced oxygen levels.

Expert advice

"If you're driving on the highway for long periods, keep it on fresh air," Kilmer advises. However, he adds that if it's unbearably hot outside, you can use the recirculation function but should keep one of the rear windows slightly open. This will allow enough fresh air to enter the car and keep you alert.

Studies have shown that elevated levels of carbon dioxide can impair a driver's cognitive functions and slow down reaction times. This makes Kilmer's advice invaluable for those who frequently drive long distances.

One viewer commented, "I've definitely experienced this but wasn't sure if it was all in my head. I would get sleepy, then open a window and switch the recirculation button, and within a minute, I felt much more awake. This tip confirms my suspicions." Another humorously noted, "As a truck driver, I'll take this into consideration."

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