AUSTIN (KXAN) — Your cell phone may be in danger thanks to what may turn out to be the hottest summer on record. The extreme heat can cause damage to your phone, drain your battery or maybe even brick it. Meteorologist Nick Bannin spoke with Luis Silva from AT&T about why the heat is so bad for your phone and what to do if it overheats (hint: don’t put it in the freezer).

NICK BANNIN, METEROLOGIST: It’s the time of year where people get that somewhat annoying alert on their phone that says your phone’s temperature is too hot. What is exactly causing this? Obviously, it’s the heat in at least some part, right?

LUIS SILVA, AT&T: Yes, absolutely. The biggest thing is obviously, direct exposure to the light. And if you have it exposed to sunlight, it really hits it much harder when the phone is trying to access your network and everything. The first thing it will do is drain your battery. Second, it can start affecting the circuits inside of
it.

BANNIN: Could there be any permanent damage done by overheating your phone?

SILVA: Oh, absolutely. Yes, if the phone is exposed, and it’s really hot for a very long time, it could affect the motherboard and the phone. [Also] effect the circuits inside it. So you might lose some of the capacity in the phone, and the first thing you will see is it will drain the battery.

BANNIN: How can we minimize the chances of our phone giving us the overheating alert?

SILVA: Don’t leave your phone in your car, right? Your car gets extremely hot if it’s in direct exposure. So don’t leave it there, because those temperatures can get exponentially worse inside the vehicle.

BANNIN: Is there any technology at play that we can make use of to reduce the chances of your phone overheating?

SILVA: Yes, there are simple things that you can do. Put it under a towel or something like that just to cover the exposure. But other than that, put it on airplane mode. If you’re on vacation, you’re in a pool, you can put your phone on airplane mode. That way the phone is not trying to access the network. So that means it will cool down by nature. So that’s one of the things that you can do.

BANNIN: Lastly, let’s say you’ve not done those things, and your phone’s overheated. You’ve got the message. How can you cool off your phone?

SILVA: A lot of people think that you can grab it and just put it on the freezer. Please do not do that. First thing to do is turn it off. Second, put it in room temperature. Those two little things are going to help you tremendously with the phone.