i am melting

after getting back from le mans after 9 hrs in a black exige s1 , i am considering getting the a/c serviced and recharged. the sill was so hot i could not lean my arm on it. such a hot box it was amazing, and respect to the race drivers at le mans inside thier closed cars with suits on…

has anyone actually got a car with a/c that works? if so how well does it work and how many ml of the cooling liquid goes into the system? (need info to prime the local a/c shop nearby).are there any weakpoints in the system to check first? mine makes all the right noises but makes sod all difference to the temp…

Search the archives.
The problem with the car is so many hot air leaks INTO the cabin, due to all the holes that should not be there.
Mine is a non-AC one and I have patched all holes I can.

Result: cool car

The right sill gets hot because the oil cooler lines are there, and air is being pulled from the rear end of the sill, through it and comes in through the dash (hot, right?)
I also bet you the handbrake feels hot as well, right?
It’s air through the rear firewall, the one where the cables have to pass through. remove the handbrake cover to the firewall and see for yourself.

Uldis, I copied your fix in the handbrake area, but how did you stop the hot air coming in through the dash, and how much difference did that make?

thanks uldis for these tips, i have been chugging through some archives and have found some good stuff on this subject. i did notice many hot spots blowing into the car, i will have a look tonight. blocking these will certainly tame the problem somewhat.

i know how you feel!

i did le mans and back in my S1 last year and melted … took a car with working air con this year

Uldis, I copied your fix in the handbrake area, but how did you stop the hot air coming in through the dash, and how much difference did that make?


Go and buy the biggest sponges you can get. If you can only get the car washing ones (about 18cm x 25) then get 4.
Dissassemble partially the front of the dash, enough so you can slip in a big sponge (or two) in each of the passages that communicate with the sills.
You’ll have to compress them first and this compression will hold them in place. This will close the air passage.
If worried that air can permeate through, wet them in something that will close the pores, like paint or something.
But I didn’t they’re there dry.

Don’t worry, this place never gets wet (unless of course you put the car into a lake or something (cue Oulton)

Hmmm, gonna have to get down to my local ‘sponge merchant’ because it really was unbeleivably hot in the car at the weekend.

Or, get an S2 with ac.

(Sorry I could not help the dig.)

I got stuck on the A40 in traffic for 2.5 hours late yesterday afternoon. The car temp sat at 89 and the ac worked great.

So while I agree with most everyone here that the S1 is a better track day car, the S2 is certainly easier to live with.


So while I agree with most everyone here that the S1 is a better track day car, the S2 is certainly easier to live with

I don’t think many of us would disagree with that statement.

I could of course have taken the other car where the A/C works perfectly

Thanks Uldis. Guess I’m going to have to swallow some brave pills and try to figure out how to disassemble the dash.

I’m off to get some sponges

It’s described well in the manual.
Not very difficult. If you pop the plastic covers you’ll see why, only 4 screws each side (if I can remember well)

That’s it, I’m going hunting tonight. See if I can bag myself a brace of sponges.

I’m driving all the way down to Goodwood on Friday for the Festival of Speed, and then probably driving across to Cornwall for the weekend. A cooler cabin will be much appreciated if this weather keeps up

Brendan, I’ll be at the GFOS on Friday so will try and say hi

Mark, you have a PM

i have aircon in my s1 exige and it does the job just fine. though i find driving with the window down does the job ok

Why did you choose to seal the front ends of the side sills with sponge, instead of the rear ends, which can help to reduce heat up of the side sills as well?

THought about it, but it was very difficult to seal back there.
You could try with a bespoke fiberglass pieces, but just sticking something that would block the air behind the dash proved easier.

Mind you, back there it would be exposed to a very harsh environment, and would need to be able to take it all.

Thanks Uldis. I’ll look into this.

Well I went for it last night. I’m a total mechanical numpty, so I wasn’t looking forward to dismantling the dash. Got off to a poor start when I really struggled just removing the long trim panel on the left hand side.
When it came to unscrewing the the dash panels, I was thinking that if it seems tricky, I could always just stop and put everything back together until… I took out one of the screws and heard the metallic tinkling of the retaining clip dropping down the back. [censored]! Point of no return…
Once I was in there, I started stuffing a sponge into the opening on the passenger side. I had a cunning plan. You see there’s small gaps around the edge of the coin tray, so some hot air could come through there. I thought I could stuff the sponges right down into the chassis side rail and block it off completely. Once my first sponge was in there, I realized there was a lot of space around it. That’s quite a big void! I had a grope around trying to judge whether another sponge alongside the first would fill the cavity, and I was thinking it would be really easy to completely lose the first sponge if it tipped over… whoops OK, that sponge is lost
Had to resort to my emergency backup sponge
Next comes the big panic! 3 of the 5 dash retaining clips are broken! I don’t know where to get replacements in a hurry. Briefly consider selling the car as an ongoing project, and then settle down to thinking more constructively. I discovered it’s just barely possible to reassemble the dash using the broken clips.
All in, the job took me two hours. I’m clearly one of those people who should leave anything complicated to the professionals

Gave the car a 15 mile test run, and the dash still seems to be getting quite warm on the driver’s side. Maybe I need to have another look

On the plus side, it seems to have pretty much stopped the nasty fumes coming into the cabin.