9 Things You Should Never Leave in Your Car

5. Cellphones

There are good reasons not to leave your cellphone behind when you leave your car. If the phone is visible inside the passenger compartment, thieves may break into your vehicle.

Also, the extreme cold temperatures cars are exposed to during winter months could damage your cellphone. Time Magazine reports that iPhones are made to operate in temperatures above 32 degrees. In very cold weather, smartphones may suffer from shortened battery life and their glass may even shatter.

6. Important documents

Vehicle registration documents need to be kept in cars. However, storing other important papers such as tax forms or bank statements in your car can leave you vulnerable to identity theft.

With enough information about you, thieves can assume your identity to make purchases in your name. (This free app helps you protect yourself from identity theft.)

7. Pets

Leaving a pet alone in a parked car while you run errands can endanger the animal’s health, notes People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

When the outside temperature is 78 degrees, temperatures inside a parked car can rise to 100 degrees in a few minutes. On a 90-degree day, the temperature inside a car can hit 109 degrees in under 10 minutes. PETA says that animals can have brain damage from heat exposure or even die from heat stroke in as little as 15 minutes.

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals notes that cars can overheat even when their windows are left open an inch or two.

8. Wooden musical instruments

Cold temperatures in cars can damage musical instruments. If an instrument is made of wood, such as violin or a guitar, cold air can cause cracking. That’s expensive to repair, notes The Des Moines Register.

Extreme cold or heat can cause the glue that holds wooden instruments together to fail, according to MusicArts.com.

9. Canned foods

Never leave cans of food in the car during freezing weather. When canned food freezes, the liquid expands and can break the seal, spoiling the food.

Says the U.S. Department of Agriculture:

“If the seams have rusted or burst, throw the cans out immediately, wrapping the burst can in plastic and disposing the food where no one, including animals can get it.”

Have you had a bad experience from leaving things in your car? Tell us about it by commenting below or on our Facebook page.

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