Experts say hand sanitizer should not be left in your car
Amid the coronavirus outbreak, one item many are stocking up on is hand sanitizer.
While it’s extremely effective killing germs, there is one place experts say you should not leave bottles of hand sanitizer.
“It’s definitely an issue if you leave your hand sanitizer in the car for days at a time or weeks,” said FGCU Associate Professor Dr. Greg Boyce who works in the Department of Chemistry and Physics. “If you are running errands and want to keep it in the car, that’s fine. But you shouldn’t be leaving it in the car indefinitely,” Boyce said.
In order to avoid potentially decreasing the effectiveness of the hand sanitizer, you must avoid leaving it inside areas where the temperature continues to rise.
“So over a longer period of time at higher temperatures, you lose some efficacy in a hand sanitizer because the active ingredient evaporates.”
The active ingredient, alcohol. Something Boyce says needs to be at a certain number in order to be the most effective.
“You want it above 60 percent so if it stayed out for quite a while you would rather not use it.”
Boyce said, during the coronavirus pandemic, using hand sanitizer left in your car is ok. Anything is better than nothing.
But, make sure you bring it inside and let it cool down before putting it on your skin to avoid irritation.
Hand sanitizers have high alcohol content in them and should be stored in a proper way. Experts say that such products should be stored in a cool and dry place away from direct sunlight. The surrounding temperature should be below 40-degree celsius. Under the direct sunlight, the ambient temperature inside the cabin can rise very quickly. The temperature of the cabin can be easily 10-20 degrees higher than the outside temperature due to the greenhouse effect. This is why products like hand sanitizers or high-pressure cans like perfumes should not be left inside the vehicle. If you are carrying such products with you, it is always a good idea to keep them in a bag and carry it with you. This way, the products will not become excessively hot. A hot hand sanitizer can also cause skin irritation according to the experts.https://www.cartoq.com/hand-sanitizer-car-risk/