6 Things You Should Never Leave in a Hot Car

Summer is heating up, which means it’s time to be more mindful of the things you leave in your car. A vehicle’s interior can become a scorching oven, experiencing temperatures much higher than outside. In 90-degree weather, this means your car’s cabin can reach 140 degrees in an hour. While it’s a given that you should never leave children or pets in a car during the summer, here are a six other items that don’t do well under such extreme conditions.

1. Medication

When left in the heat for extended periods, over-the-counter and prescription medications can lose their effectiveness. This is bad news for people who are sensitive to dosing. For example, levothyroxine, a thyroid medication, can degrade quickly in the heat. A minor change in efficacy results in a lower dose than the person is used to, which can lead to unwarranted side effects. Be sure to check drug labels for storage specifications, as most recommend storage between 75 and 77 degrees.

2. Electronics

Smartphones, tablets, laptops, cameras, and other devices cost a pretty penny, and it would be awful to lose them due to heat damage. Electronics are actually quite sensitive to temperatures, and when left in a hot vehicle, their batteries can burst or overheat, resulting in melted plastic and an expensive repair bill.

3. Crayons

Having crayons on hand for the kids is a great way to keep them occupied during long car rides, but crayons melt in extreme heat. When you’ve left a few crayons in your car’s console or on the seat, you could end up with a colorful mess to clean up.

4. Alcoholic and Carbonated Beverages

Wine, beer, and soda are summer essentials, but you should never leave them in a hot car. When wine heats up, its entire composition and complexity are ruined. At worst, the cork can pop out from the pressure and you could be left with a wine stain in your cargo space. The same thing can happen to beer or soda, and while these beverages won’t necessarily stain your upholstery, they are difficult to clean up.

5. CDs and DVDs

While modern drivers tend to use mp3 players or satellite radio to listen to music while driving, CDs are still an old-school favorite. If you have a vehicle with rear-seat entertainment, it’s also likely that you keep DVDs in the car. Discs can actually warp and melt in excessive heat, ruining your favorite tunes or the kids’ go-to movie. It’s best to keep all discs in a portable storage container so you can remove them when you exit the car.

6. Sunscreen

Sunblock is a must, but extreme heat can change sunscreen’s composition, making it lose its overall effectiveness. The next time you use it, you’re leaving your skin vulnerable to UV rays and sunburn.

Despite the fact that we all lead busy lives, using our vehicle as an on-the-go storage facility isn’t the best option, especially when the above items are involved. Be mindful of your routine this summer and ensure all important items are kept safely out of the heat.

Image via Pixabay

Posted in Tips and Tricks