Solar Powered Auto Fan

The good old Solar Powered Auto Fan sold by the people of "As Seen on TV".  I've eye-balled these for years and the stiffling sun and humidity this year finally pushed hard enough to get one. As describided on Amazon "Solar powered ventilation system Auto fan blows hot air out of parked car Maintains comfortable temperature level for your return Fresh air is drawn in as hot, stale air vents out Auto Cool even helps to eliminate pet and tobacco odors Solar powered, no need battery Fits any car window".

Solar Car Fan

The concept is simple; a small device that hangs off the inside of your car window that has a small fan hooked up to a small solar panel to power it.  My first impression when unboxing it? The solar panel fell out into my hand.  There was a small amount of rubbery glue that was supposed to hold the panel in but was only adhered to the device and not the solar panel, not a good start.

The gap created at the top of the window when rolled up (because there is a doo-dad stuck in it) is addressed by a rubber weather strip. The weather strip is not a very pliable rubber and coiled rather tightly in the small box, not a good impression here either. Let's get it installed.

The installation is pretty straight forward, just hook the solar fan over the edge of the rolled down window and cut the weather stripped to size to fill the gaps.  The weather strip simply slips over the edge of the glass via a small channel in one side, a very small channel.

This channel is so small I don't have any faith it will hold on tp the window at highway speeds, yet another strike against it.  At this point I did however get to feel the amount of air moving through the fan, it was substantial.  This gave me a slight glimmer of hope that the failings mentioned previously might be worth overcoming.

Semi-satisfied with my install, all that was left was to roll up the window and give it a shot.  Remember the mention of the gap having the fan wedged in the window? It's bigger than the weather stripping.  This is a huge issue because the whole idea was to be able to roll up my windows to avoid wet seats after surprise summer showers.  If this thing won't let me seal the window, we have a deal breaker! Also, with the gap in the window, it is much more likely that the fan is simply pulling air from the outside of the car through the window and then blowing it back out than actually pulling hot air from the car.

All in all I think the idea is great but the execution in this product just falls miles short of functional.  I may use the concept to make my own solar powered car ventilation system but this one is going back to the manufacturer.

-Better Luck Next Time

1 comment:

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