Ask LH: Is It Safe To Store My Gadget In A Hot Car?

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Dear Lifehacker, I was just wondering if it's too hot to store an OBD-II module in my car's glove box? Is there a temperature at which I should remove it? (No batteries or screen to worry about; it's just the module itself.) Thanks, Donald

Dear Donald,

Generally speaking, you should be fine. Most OBD-II modules are designed to withstand very hot conditions. Depending on the model, this could be anywhere between 60 and 90 degrees Celsius. As long as the temperature doesn't exceed the maximum as specified by the manufacturer, it should remain perfectly operational.

According to the Australian government, the temperature inside a parked car can be 20 to 30 degrees hotter than the outside temperature in summer. Even in these severe cases, we doubt your module would stop working. The same goes for Australian winters - the temperature would need to dip well below freezing before any lasting damage was caused.

With that said, constantly exposing the device to hardcore temperatures may cause it to degrade faster. To be on the safe side, you might want to store it somewhere cooler when the mercury passes 40 degrees outside.

Cheers Lifehacker Got your own question you want to put to Lifehacker? Send it using our contact form.


    My el-cheapo Hong Kong sourced ODBII dongle has survived 8 years in my 4WD. It's up above the pedals in the footwell and I leave it permanently plugged in as it's a right pain to insert and remove. It's survived Summer in the Pilbara, so I figure they're probably reasonably tough and not too worried about heat or vibrations.

    As always, YMMV.

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