Explosively hot: Aerosol cans and high heat don't mix

A woman in the West Valley found out that our summer temperatures can be explosive in some cases. She left something in her car that heated up and became a projectile.

It's right there in the fine print, but who reads warnings on aerosol cans and heeds them? Not many.

"Danger - extremely flammable, contents under pressure, do not expose to temperatures exceeding 122 degrees."

On a summer day in the Valley, temperatures inside a closed car can climb to 150 degrees and higher.

Take a look at the photo -- it's a startling reminder of what can happen to an aerosol can inside of a hot vehicle.

Ashlynn Nichole says on Sunday, she left the can of compressed air on her car's dashboard and came out to discover that it had exploded, blowing two holes in her windshield and damaging the dashboard.

The Arizona Science Center helped us understand what can happen with contents under pressure and heat.

"So inside those pressurized cans, that heat is making what's inside heat up and the pressure is building and building an can eventually overcome the materials on the outside of the can.. that energy can be explosive," explained ASC's Sari Custer.

Custer and her team simulated what happens when we leave an aerosol can in a hot car by pouring liquid nitrogen and a plastic soda bottle and then capping it.

"We don't even have to heat it up. The air outside is enough to make the liquid nitrogen expand so much it will push against the plastic bottle and make it rupture in an explosive way."

Thankfully, Nichole wasn't in the car when the can exploded, but we can all learn from her damaged windshield.

"I am actually surprised this doesn't happen more. We put a lot of things in our car, we just don't think about taking it out."

Go through your glove box, check under seats to make sure this summer, you aren't driving around with something that could explode when exposed to high temperatures.

Custer says she's surprised we don't hear of these incidents happening more often.