8 Ways to Increase Your Driving Comfort
A study by Harvard Health Watch estimated that most Americans spend more than 1-1/2 hours a day commuting in their cars, so why not give yourself more comfort for your health, leisure and safety?
Make Sure Your Air Filters Are Clean
Your car’s air filters keep debris like dust, pollen, smog and other contaminants from getting into your car. If your cabin air filter is beginning to go bad, you’ll notice unpleasant odors coming from the vents, excess noise coming from the fan and reduced airflow. Before you choose to replace it, simply try cleaning it! You’ll want to do this a few times before replacing. You can use a damp cloth.
Diffuse Essential Oil Fragrance Into the Air
Essential oils not only make for a sweeter, cleaner smelling interior, but diffusing them can help improve physical alertness and promote mental clarity. The easiest way to diffuse essential oils in the car for comfort is to place a tissue with a couple drops of essential oil on the dashboard. You can also clip a piece of cork containing drops of the oil to the air vent. If you don’t want to DIY, buy a diffuser that plugs into the lighter outlet.
Add Lumbar Support
Not all cars come with the best lumbar support, resulting in restlessness while driving, and a sore back later on. For a quick fix, add a lumbar support cushion to your seat. This option from Everlasting Comfort is a memory foam back pillow that relieves and alleviates both acute and chronic pain from: back aches, muscle aches, arthritis, stenosis, herniated disks and general sore backs.
Photo: Courtesy of Everlasting Comfort
Seat Belt Cover
You know wearing a seat belt is essential for your safety, and not wearing one is illegal in most states, but that doesn’t mean it’s always comfortable. If your seat belt is chafing against your collarbone, or creating another type of discomfort, be it from the pressure or the fabric, you can slip a soft cover over the belt.
Photo: Courtesy of SUBANG
Whether you have an old car with worn out seats that are no longer supportive, or you just need extra support for those long drives, you should consider finding a lightweight cushion to add more comfort to your ride. This seat cushion from Big Ant even features a small pocket you can easily and quickly access things from, like your cell phone and wallet—but of course don’t do that while you’re driving.
Photo: Courtesy of Big Ant
Windshield Sun Shade
Whether it’s summer or you live in a year-round warm climate, getting into a scorching hot car is unbearable. Keep the sun from heating things up by investing in this double-bubble silver-coated windshield sun shade.
Photo: Courtesy of Big Hippo
Memory Foam Steering Wheel Cover
For an added bonus of comfort, purchase a cushioned steering wheel cover. By promoting a more comfortable grip, you’ll save yourself unwanted pain in your hands and arms. This product is made of PVC leather that CAR PASS says is heat, cold and wear resistant.
Photo: Courtesy of CAR PASS
Adjust Your Seat
One of the most important parts of driving safely is ensuring your seat position is both comfortable and accurate. Be sure you have your leg position correct by checking that your legs don’t feel cramped up, your knees are slightly bent, your feet are comfortably on the pedals (without you having to reach) and your thighs are relaxed. You may also want to tilt your seat so that your entire thigh is supported evenly and the backs of your knees aren’t rubbing up with the seat. Be sure your seat is at a 100- to 110-degree angle between your hips and back, with your shoulders behind your hips and not in line or above them. Finally, adjust your seat height so that your chin is in alignment with the top of your steering wheel and your hips are as high as your knees.
Disclosure: This post is brought to you by The Family Handyman editors, who aim to highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our commerce partners. We frequently receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We welcome your feedback. Have something you think we should know about? Contact us, here.