There are plenty of gimmicky bits of technology in cars these days. Voice recognition is barely used (or usable), our phones slip off a large number of integrated wireless charging pads, and you’ll never use your new electronic and panoramic sunroof.
A sunroof always seems like a good idea when you purchase the car. It’s yet another window to let in more light, making the cabin of a car feel more open, and you dream about opening it up on a sunny day to let in the rays and release hot air from your stuffy interior.
But actually, they’re the worst. And this is coming from someone who bought a car with a sunroof.
Here’s ten reasons why you should avoid sunroofs at all costs!
10. You’ll Never Actually Use It
When you first drive your car away from the dealer after buying it, you might open up the sunroof. But after a month of owning the car, you’ll forget what those buttons even do. When it’s hot, you’ll turn on the AC, and of course you won’t negate its effect by opening a window. When it’s raining, you’d be stupid to do such a thing, and when it’s overcast, what’s the point?
I honestly can’t give you a reason to open it, apart from when your kids want to act like they’re being driven in a limo and want to stick their hands out and scream.
9. It’s Heavy!
If you were asked if you wanted to make your car slower, less fuel efficient, and less likely to take a corner in return for having a hole in the roof, what would you say? Obviously, that would be a big “NO”. Glass is a heavy material, so adding 50lbs plus to not just the car, but the roof of the car, is asking for trouble. It greatly raises the centre of gravity, damaging your car’s handling, and means you’ll be lugging around that extra weight everywhere you go.
8. They’re Expensive!
Not only are you paying more in fuel because of that extra weight, but you’ve also already paid to do so, with sunroofs being an expensive option on a lot of cars. It can cost a couple of thousand to buy a car with a hole in the roof. That’s a very expensive way to lose even more money.
7. They Go Wrong… Often
The thing is, some of these sunroofs can be quite complicated. They have rising functions, they can slide back and forth, and guess what, this means they go wrong. Actually, they go wrong quite a lot, and can be a royal pain in the a** to fix, adding to the overall cost of owning one.
But when they’re not broken, they can be a great area for moisture to get trapped. This will slowly eat away at the metal of your roof and one day, rust bubbles will form around your beloved sunroof. Want to fix it? Well, someone will just have to remove your sunroof (expensive) do some welding (even more expensive), and finally paint it to stop any rust from progressing even further. Did I mention this is quite expensive?
5. They Ruin Your Car’s Aerodynamics
There’s a reason why the most aerodynamic of cars are smooth with very few vents and holes. This is because the smoother the shape, the more slippery it is when travelling through the air. Just like you wouldn’t open a window on the motorway, you wouldn’t want to open your sunroof either. It adds to the drag of the car and that means it takes more power, and therefore fuel, to keep pushing through that custardy air.
4. It’s Noisy!
Not only have you lost the sound deadening of the metal, added insulation, and then material that covers that to a lump of glass, you then open the sunroof and you’re greeted by the sound of turbulent air. Some cars have gone to great lengths to reduce the noise, but this then adds to the complexity of the system, and its price.
3. No More Headroom
Talking of complexity, where do you think the sunroof goes when it’s opened? Well, it has to slide back into somewhere, and that massively reduces the height of the ceiling of the car, reducing headroom.
2. It Ruins Chassis Rigidity
This may not relate to many normal drivers out there, but to those of us who like a spirited drive with a car that doesn’t flex too much, this isn’t something you’ll enjoy. Just like when you take off the roof of a car to make it a convertible, you either lose structural rigidity, or increase weight because there’s more bracing in other places to make up for it. This is a lose-lose situation, and one you’ll want to avoid.
1. It Gets So Hot In The Sun!
While you’re driving you can turn on the AC to lower cabin temperatures, but if you’ve parked in the sun, your car is going to heat up to centre of the Earth temperatures in no time. Recently, car manufactures have started to add UV and sun-blocking technology to their sunroofs, but again, this adds cost.
Am I Being Stupid?
Am I being overly exaggerating and pedantic? Yes, of course I am. Sunroofs really aren’t all that bad and if you don’t spec it in some countries, you could ruin your chances of resale. They really don’t have that much of an effect on everything stated above, but they are certainly one of the most useless and gimmicky parts of a car. Especially if you live in the UK where temperatures often don’t grow past freezing your b*****ks off in the middle of Summer.
So while you shouldn’t take this so seriously, definitely think twice before ticking the options box.