In the summer, you’re more likely than ever to carry a water bottle around in your car. After all, opening the door of a stiflingly hot vehicle makes you want to chug some water pronto. But you should use these tricks for staying hydrated instead of leaving a bottle in your car.
Sure, a water bottle that’s been sitting in the sun all day isn’t the most refreshing thirst-quencher in the summer heat. (Plus, it shouldn’t stay there long because you should never refill a plastic water bottle anyway.) But there’s a more dangerous reason not to leave one on the seat: It could start a fire.
Seems backwards that water could cause fire, but the secret is in the round bottle shape. On a hot day, the sun shines through the window and through the full water bottle. Like a magnifying glass, the water inside concentrates the light—and its heat—to one spot. The point on the seat where the rays are focused can get hot enough to create flames. (Find out why charging your phone in bed is a fire risk, too.)
To avoid the scary fire risk, carry your bottle with you instead of leaving it in an overheating car. If you absolutely must keep it inside, stash it under a seat so it’s out of the sun.
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