Leaving an iPod in the car

Q: I recently had an iPod connector kit installed in my car, that allows me to connect my iPod directly to my car’s stereo. I have noticed that when I turn the car off, the iPod simply pauses. Is it OK to leave the unit in the car paused, or would it be better to take it out of the glove box and shut it down every time I leave?

– Jonathan

A: Pausing an iPod is effectively just as good as turning it off, since a paused iPod automatically turns itself off after about 60 seconds. You won’t cause any hard drive wear, run down the battery, or otherwise damage your iPod simply by walking away from an iPod that’s been paused.

However, you do need to be aware of the environment you’re leaving the iPod in: the extremely hot temperatures that a parked car’s interior can reach during the summer can be damaging to your iPod’s battery. Apple recommends not storing your iPod in places hotter than 113 degrees Farenheit, but a car’s interior can easily reach 120 degrees within an hour even on a mild 85-degree day. You can read more about battery care at Apple’s website and at Battery University.

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