We all know the risks of leaving pets in a car during the hot, sunny days of summer. But if you have a hearing aid, the same applies. In fact, it’s best to avoid leaving any hearing device in a place where it is exposed to prolonged extreme heat or direct sunlight.

Although it’d be a pretty dire circumstance to actually melt any part of a modern hearing aid, there are other problems that overheating can create.

The first is that it will do no favors to the unit’s battery. Like extreme cold, high heat messes with the functioning of batteries.

Even more problematic is that the electronics in a hearing aid — which at this point are small computers — also don’t appreciate extreme temperatures. There’s a reason your desktop and laptop have fans for cooling. That kind of damage will probably require replacing the unit completely.

The most likely place this kind of harm happens is in a locked car left in the sun. Even if the hearing aid isn’t exposed to the sun, temperatures in a sealed vehicle can get well over 100 degrees. That’s above the operating specs of any hearing aid.

But a hot car isn’t the only place to avoid leaving your hearing aid. A windowsill, beach blanket, or picnic table on a sunny day can all wreak havoc. Even wearing it on a really hot day without a shade hat might create problems (especially when the moisture from sweating is taken into account).

A couple of other heat exposure situations are also to be avoided. These usually arise when trying to dry a wet device. Never use a hairdryer. And — really, it’s been tried — don’t use the microwave.