Why is it dangerous to use air conditioning in a car in winter

Why is it dangerous to use air conditioning in a car in winter

In winter, using air conditioning in a car can cause controversy and resistance among car enthusiasts. Some Ukrainian drivers believe that turning on the air conditioning during the cold season benefits the car, while others claim the opposite. Also, some drivers claim that turning on the air conditioning helps defrost the windows, so they do not hesitate to use it at low temperatures. However, experts warn against such practices and provide strong arguments to support their recommendations. Let's look at this issue in more detail, and also discuss how to avoid common mistakes that can lead to costly repairs.


  •  Benefits of air conditioning: Air conditioning can be useful in winter as it helps keep the air in the cabin clean, preventing the windows from fogging up and ensuring a comfortable environment in the car.
  • Warming up the engine: Turning on the air conditioning can help the engine warm up faster, which reduces wear and saves fuel. However, this method is not recommended for all engine types and models.
  • Fuel Consumption: Although the use of air conditioning may increase fuel consumption, the increase is usually minor and is offset by improved visibility and comfort.


  • Freon and its aggression in the cold. It is important to understand that freon, which forms the basis of air conditioning systems, is in a liquid state and turns into gas only during operation. In the cold season, freon may not have time to turn into the gas phase, which, in turn, can lead to serious damage, including failure of the air conditioning compressor.
  • Temperature restrictions. According to experts, freon begins to boil at a pressure of 15 atmospheres, which can occur at a temperature of about 0 degrees Celsius. Thus, using an air conditioner in the cold season can lead to its malfunction due to the inability of freon to undergo the process of being converted back into gas.

Remember: How to avoid rapid battery drain in cold weather

Expert recommendations: 

  • Do not turn on the air conditioner immediately after starting the engine in cold weather. Give the engine some time to warm up before turning on the air conditioning. This will help avoid possible breakdowns.
  • Air conditioning system maintenance. Regular servicing of your air conditioning system will help ensure that it is operating in good condition.
  • Selecting alternative defrosting methods. Instead of using the air conditioner, you can use safer methods for defrosting the windows, such as scrapers and rear window defrosters.
  • Limit active use of air conditioning. Constant use of the air conditioner can cause wear and damage to the compressor, especially during the cold season. In such cases, it is better to stick to a conventional heating system to ensure comfortable conditions in the cabin.
  • Avoid condensation accumulation. During the cold season, condensation formed in the air conditioning system can freeze and lead to clogging or failure of the system.

Using an air conditioner in a car in winter is not only not recommended, but can also cause damage to the car. Choosing alternative defrosting methods and careful handling of the air conditioner during the cold season will help avoid possible problems and costly repairs, and will also ensure a safer and more reliable driving. 

Also I would like to remind you that car redemption can be a good way out in a situation if your car no longer gives you the necessary satisfaction and you want to buy a new car. The repurchase process allows you to sell your old car and receive funds for it that can be used as a down payment or full payment for a new vehicle. This can be especially useful if you are looking to upgrade your fleet or upgrade to a more modern model. A deal like this can also make the process of selling your old car easier, avoiding the hassle of a private sale or trade-in.