How to keep your laptop safe inside your car
By Amy Napier
It’s a habit. We get in the car. We put our water bottle in the cup holder. We put our purse/bag, lunch, and other items on the seat. We buckle our seatbelt. We strap in our dogs. We remind the other people in the car with us to buckle their seatbelts. And off we go.
What we don’t think about is if/when we have to brake rapidly to (hopefully) ensure we are not in a car accident, everything that is not secured will go flying around and most likely get damaged. This includes any technology we may have in the car including our laptops that we all carry back and forth from home and work nowadays. And unfortunately, laptops can be easily damaged in cars from accidents as well as other unhealthy situations.
Here are 5 tips to keep your laptop (and other computer equipment) safe in the car:
- Temperature – Extreme hot or cold temperatures, as well as humidity can damage the components of a laptop. Which means in Florida we can safely leave our laptops in the car at any given time about 3 weeks out of the year. Computers really shouldn’t be left in cars during the day or overnight to be safe from temperature and theft. Take them inside with you.
- Storage – Always securely store your laptop in a highly padded case that is specifically made to protect a laptop. This can be a brief case, biker bag, backpack, etc. Be sure to put the laptop in the section of the bag that is padded and connect the Velcro straps or zipper in that section to keep it secure. Then close the bag with the zipper or straps as well for additional security.
- Placement – Studies have shown that the safest place to transport a laptop (or any computer equipment) in a car is behind the driver’s seat on the floorboard. Make sure the case is laid flat and there are no liquids around that could spill on the laptop.
- Security – Use the seatbelts and tether anchors in the car to help secure your laptop. If you need to place your laptop on the front or back seat, fasten the seatbelt through the handle or shortest strap on the case so that it anchors it to the car. Or make the bag strap as short as possible and hook it through the tether anchor and buckle the strap to itself.
- Long Term Care – Purchase the Accidental Damage service when you buy a new laptop. Almost all of the larger manufacturers offer this as an add-on to the original purchase. And while it’s not cheap, when your laptop is damaged, you just send it back to the company and they will repair or replace it. Be sure to read the fine print as many of the replacements are refurbished laptops and quality varies based on manufacturer.
Ensure your laptop (and other computer equipment) stays safe in a car by following the 5 tips above. And remember, buckle up those laptops when you get in your car to keep them safe, secure, and protected!