Now this is very interesting! My car's manual says to roll down the windows to let out all the hot air before turning on the A/C. No wonder more folks are dying from cancer than ever before. We wonder where this stuff comes from, but here is an example that explains a lot of the cancer-causing incidents. Many people are in their cars the first thing in the morning and the last thing at night, 7 days a week.
Please do NOT turn on A/C as soon as you enter the car. Open the windows after you enter your car and then after a couple of minutes, turn ON the AC. Here's why: According to research, the car's dashboard, seats, a/c ducts, in fact ALL of the plastic objects in your vehicle emit Benzene, a Cancer causing toxin. A BIG CARCINOGEN. Take the time to observe the smell of heated plastic in your car when you open it, and BEFORE you start it up.
In addition to causing cancer, Benzene poisons your bones, causes anemia and reduces white blood cells. Prolonged exposure can cause Leukemia and increases the risk of some cancers. It can also cause miscarriages in pregnant women. The "acceptable" Benzene level indoors is: 50mg per sq.ft. A car parked indoors, with windows closed, will contain 400-800 mg of Benzene - 8 times the acceptable level. If parked outdoors in the sun, at a temperature above 60 degrees F, the Benzene level goes up to 2000-4000 mg, 40 times the acceptable level. People, who get into the car, keeping the windows closed, will eventually inhale excessive amounts of the BENZENE toxin. Benzene is a toxin that affects your kidneys and liver. What's worse, it is extremely difficult for your body to expel this toxic stuff.
A 2007 German study on "Toxicity of Parked Motor Vehicle Indoor Air" which specifically tested the health effects of emissions from one new and one three-year-old vehicle exposed to “parked in sunshine” conditions found "no apparent health hazard of parked motor vehicle indoor air":
- Buters and his colleagues first collected molecules from the air inside a new car and a three-year-old vehicle of the same brand placed under 14,000 watts of light, where temperatures reached up to 150 degrees Fahrenheit. They next exposed these compounds to human, mouse and hamster cells grown in lab dishes. These are commonly used to test toxicity.
- New car smell does not appear to be toxic, the scientists found. Air from the new car did cause a slight aggravation of the immune response that could affect people with allergies, but the same was not seen with the older vehicle.
- (The German study also found the total amount of volatile organic compounds in a new car to be one-tenth the level claimed in the e-mail for Benzene alone.)
The ACS similarly noted of this e-mail that:
We found no published studies that confirm the claims of this e-mail. Benzene levels that exceed recommendations for chronic workplace exposure have been observed in some moving cars, but these levels seem unlikely in properly maintained cars.
The e-mail did get one thing right, though: Upon returning to a closed car on warm days, you should open the windows for a minute or so rather than immediately turning on the air conditioning. The reason has nothing to do with Benzene levels, however — rather, it's because when a car is parked in the sun with its windows rolled up, that condition can create a greenhouse effect which causes the interior of the vehicle to warm up to a temperature considerably higher than that of the outside air. Opening the windows for a few moments allows for the exchange of hot air from inside the vehicle with cooler air outside, speeding up the process of cooling off the car more than air conditioning alone would.