How to Make Your Own Sun Shades for Carsby Ann Wolters
A car sunshade, placed over the windshield on the inside, keeps a car cooler on sunny days. Automobile sunshades also protect the car interior from sun damage. You can make your own accordion sunshade and personalize it with a one-of-a-kind design. Then put it to use shielding your car from the sun’s intense rays.
Make a template of your car's windshield by taping together several pieces of newspaper. Put the taped-together sheets of paper over your car's windshield and cut the paper so that it is the same size and shape as the windshield.
Lay out your newspaper template on top of the cardboard as close to the left side as possible. Trace the template on the cardboard. Shift the template about 6 inches to the right, keeping it lined up horizontally, and retrace the right end of the template. This added width will allow for a bit of fold to remain in your accordion sunshade and still cover the windshield adequately.
Cut out the sunshade with a utility knife. Next, measure the width of your car’s rearview mirror. Cut out an area on the top center of the sunshade as wide as the mirror and about 3 inches high so that you can tuck the shade up under the rearview mirror. Try fitting the sunshade into place to see if the space you cut is large enough. Trim off additional cardboard if needed.
Once it is cut to size, measure and draw five-inch vertical lines across the span of the cardboard. Use a bending board to fold your sunshade, following the lines as your guide. Fold forward and back alternately for accordion-like folds.
Paint your sunshade however you choose, or leave it natural brown.
- Use an appliance box for the cardboard, or try asking for cardboard at a camper shell shore.
- A bending board allows you to make straight, neat folds in the cardboard. Make your own out of two 1-inch by 4-inch pieces of wood in the length needed for your sunshade. Drill holes near the ends to attach the two boards together with long screws and wing nuts. Loosen the wing nuts and place the cardboard between the two pieces of wood with one edge right next to the line you wish to fold. Bend the cardboard against the wood.
Things You'll Need
- Old newspaper
- Large piece of cardboard
- Utility knife
- Bending board
- Tempera poster paint (optional)
- Paint brushes (optional)
Ann Wolters has been a writer, consultant and writing coach since 2008. Her work has appeared in "The Saint Paul Almanac" and in magazines such as "Inventing Tomorrow" and "Frontiers." She earned a Master of Arts in English as a second language from the University of Minnesota.