Heat in cars damages electronics

July 7, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
Your homes and your health are not the only things impacted by the sweltering summer heat.

What about your cars? And the items you typically store inside them?

When the hot summer sun beats down on your car temperatures inside can climb fast. For example on a 100 plus degree day the interior can reach nearly 140 degrees in only 90 minutes. Which is why Fresno mom Brandy Higley never leaves her kids in the hot car, but speaks from experience when she says there is other every day items you should take along with you as well.

"We've left iPhones in the car and then the screens get real black so it damages them," said Higley.

The heat not only damages phones, but experts at the Geek's Computer Service in Clovis say the heat can also ruin electronics by cooking screens, cracking lenses and baking memory cards. In some cases their components can also be dangerous.

"Think about leaving any sort of battery in the heat. It's just not something you want to do," said Jay Petersen from The Geek's Computer Service. "They can leak, they can cause fire later because there's internal damage to the battery and now your computer is drawing on that battery power."

Items such as aerosol cans and cigarette lighters can also explode when stored in areas above 120 degrees. The heat can also warp the shape of frames or lenses on your sunglasses. The chemicals used to make plastic bottles can leach into the water you leave in the car.

But probably one of the most dangerous items to forget in the car is prescription medications. Pharmacist Khoa Huynh insists they should always be stored at room temperature. He says the heat can change the chemical composition of the drugs causing them to lose their potency, in many cases rendering them inactive.

" We should always check. Definitely check the backseat, check your console just to make sure yo don't have any of your eye drops or medications and just take it out, take it with you, put it in your bag and it should be safe that way," said Huynh.

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