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9 Things You’ll Regret Leaving in Your Car This Winter

Forget about those cans of soda? You may want to check the trunk...

It's getting cold outside!Dutourdumonde Photography/Shutterstock

It’s getting cold outside!

There’s nothing worse than hopping into your car on a cold day only to find out those cans of soda you picked up yesterday exploded all over your trunk. Not a pretty sight at all, and it’s going to take hours to try and clean up the now sticky mess. However, this could have been easily avoided if the soda wasn’t in the car, right? Just like the soda, there are a ton of other things you’ll regret leaving in your car this winter that you are going to want to take note of. Here are the things you should always have in your car.

Cell phones, tablets, or laptopsolegator/Shutterstock

Cell phones, tablets, or laptops

Your electronic batteries can take quite a toll in the extreme cold temperatures. Apple actually suggests that having your electronics outside below 32 degrees Fahrenheit isn’t good for them, and the performance of your electronics will suffer. Although some phones can withstand the cold (even up to -4 degrees), your battery can still drain faster than normal in colder temperature—sometimes even going completely dead with no warning. Yes, your electronics will work fine when bringing them back to warmer temperatures, but it’s still not great for their overall performance and battery life. What you should be worried about in terms of winter car care is very different from the 7 summer car tips every driver should know.



We all know that cracked eggs are a big no-no when buying a carton, and it can also happen when eggs are left out in frozen temperatures. However, if you do end up leaving eggs out and they are perfectly intact, yet frozen, they are still salvageable. After bringing those eggs to room temperature, it’s recommended to only hard-cook eggs that have been sitting in a frozen climate. That’s because colder temperatures cause the yolk to freeze, which means it won’t blend as well compared to a properly refrigerated runny egg. These are the strangest things mechanics have found in cars.

Baby formulaAfrica Studio/Shutterstock

Baby formula

Baby formula can actually separate in freezing temperatures, which could ultimately make it inedible. If this happens, you may want to just get rid of that baby formula to be safe. Winter and our cars don’t always go hand in hand. If your car is a bit older, take a look at our tips to stay warm in a car without heat.

coca colaNew Africa/Shutterstock

Carbonated beverages

Soda isn’t the only beverage to explode in freezing temperatures. Other popular carbonated beverages, like beer or seltzer water, also don’t stand a chance. The freezing temperature for soda is actually 30 degrees, and for beer that has 5 percent alcohol, the freezing point is 27 degrees. If it’s lower the temperature, there is a risk of explosion in your vehicle. Here are the things you are doing in your car that you shouldn’t.

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Canned foods

Not only can canned foods expand and explode like a carbonated beverage, but it can also actually break the seal and spoil the foods inside the can. If your canned food did freeze in the car, it’s recommended to thaw it in the refrigerator. If the food looks or smells bad when you open it, throw it out. Especially if it seems rusted! And if the food does seem a bit funky, avoid tasting it at all costs! There are some driving changes you’ll also want to make to stay safe in the winter, but even doing everything you can to avoid an accident, you can still get in trouble. Make sure you prepare for the worse by learning the safe driving tips for 10 scary driving situations.

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Musical instruments

The last thing your string, brass, or woodwind instruments need is to be sitting in extremely cold temperatures. Freezing temperatures can completely tear up your instruments, like the wood, the strings, or even the valves. If you did leave it out overnight, make sure to gradually warm it up. Going from zero to 60 when warming your instrument can cause damage immediately, so be careful when trying to warm it back up. There are just a few other things you need to do to get your car winter-ready.

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Some drugs, like insulin, can actually lose their effectiveness if they freeze. Make sure to remove any drugs from the pharmacy from your car or risk wasting expensive medicine thanks to the cold. Medication is just one of the things to never leave in your car at any time of year.

dog car back seatNina Buday/Shutterstock


In general, leaving your fluffy friend in the car is probably never a good idea. And it’s especially true in colder temperatures. By locking the car (even if you’re quickly running in somewhere) your increasing the chance of your pet freezing to death. Don’t plan on turning your car off when running in somewhere? Well, that’s actually illegal. Add “checking your car for these items” in the winter to our list of 74 car maintenance tips that will extend the life of your car, and you’ll be all set!

Ice scrapers & snow brushesBorozentsev/Shutterstock

Ice scrapers and snow brushes

What’s the point of scraping off ice if your ice scraper is already completely frozen? It may seem ludicrous to have to bring in this car tool every night, but you’ll be thankful later when trying to scrape the ice off your car the next morning. Now, find out some more winter car care tips to keep you and your car safe.

Originally Published on The Family Handyman