Shocking experience

Whenever I exit my car from the passenger seat I receive a static shock the minute I touch the car door. Other than shoving the door shut with my purse, how do I avoid receiving a shock? Loud enough by the way to be heard by the driver of the car!

Truckers who haul volotile substances such as gasoline have ground straps. These are metal impregnated rubber strips of rubber that hang to the ground when the vehicle is stopped. This discharges any static build-up in the vehicle to earth ground so when they connect the hoses there’s not an explosion.

In the fifties, it wasn’t uncommon to see a passenger car with a ground strap. But then? This was back when the tire companies started monkeying around with the tire compounds.


I don’t recall seeing a car with a ground strap in the 50s but gasoline and fuel oil transport trucks and semi trucks had a chain near the rear axle that hung down to touch the road. They made a ringing sound as they moved along.

To schutte: You might want to try staying in contact with some metallic portion of the car with your hand, door or whatever, while you exit.

You may also want to make sure your clothes aren’t loaded with static energy when they come out of the dryer.

I’ve also found that certain types of clothing materials cause static too.

It will happen whether the seats are cloth or leather.

Oh yes, lots of those hanging static straps around during the 50s and 60s, I even used two of them on a '74 Impala. One problem with them was in the cold weather the strap tended to remain off the ground after travel.

In addition to the grounding strap, which sounds like what you should have, you can hold a key (or other metal thing) and touch the car with that first. I would go with the grounding strap. Your next set of tyres may not have the problem.

Wear cotton clothes. Avoid polyester, wool, and nylon.

“Cotton clothes only” is a work rule in many places that make commercial fireworks or primers for ammo.

Use some “Static Guard” laundry spray on the upholstery.

While setting in the seat grap the metal part of the door, do not let go until feet are on the ground and you will not get a shock.

Harness this “alternative energy source” to recharge the battery…? :wink:

Contact people involved in reasearch of the paranormal.

If I’m understanding your dilemma correctly, you are getting an electric jolt whenever you touch the outside of the PASSENGER door of YOUR OWN CAR…

Therefore, I have some ideas.

  1. Drive your own car.

  2. Never let a man drive your car with you in it who is not a gentleman and will not open & close your door for you.

  3. If a woman is driving instead of you, make sure that she is well grounded.

  4. Wear gloves.

It is not the material, but the combination of materials that produce the static charge. Nylon clothes and polyester upholstery can be a shocking combo. So can leather and polyester. Wool or silk and polyester are bad too. . Cotton is relatively neutral.

Goggle Triboelectric Series for more info.

Want a practical answer, I suppose. The already mentioned cotton would probably help. So will keeping your hand on a grounded part of the car as already mentioned. Seat covers may also help with reference to the Triboelectric Series. Laundry spray or sheets might help, but I could no longer ride in car polluted with the cheap perfume. (It makes my head will fill up and my skin itch and feel hot.)