If you’re driving around in a new car, congratulations! Now the bad news: It could be slowly KILLING YOU.
A study at Harvard just found the “new car smell” everyone knows and loves might cause CANCER.
They left a brand-new car parked outside for 12 days, then measured the air quality inside, and it wasn’t good. They found large amounts of two known carcinogens.
There was 35% more formaldehyde in the air than what’s considered safe, and 61% more of another cancer-causing chemical (acetaldehyde).
That could be enough to up your cancer risk long-term, especially if you spend a lot of time on the road. And anyone who leases new cars every few years would have an even higher risk.
Don’t freak if you’ve got a “new car smell” air freshener. That’s not what they’re talking about. They only looked at ACTUAL new cars.
It apparently has to do with chemicals in the plastic and other materials that need time to air out. They say it’s the worst in the first six months.
If you’re in a new car HOLDING YOUR BREATH right now . . . first of all, breathe. Here are a few better ways to deal with it . . .
1. Keep your car well-ventilated. Crack your windows to let fresh air in. Or if you’re using A/C, make sure the air-recirculation button is OFF. You don’t want to recirculate old air, you want new air coming in.
2. Try to park in the shade. The study found heat makes it worse. So on hotter days, try to air your car out before you start driving.
3. Keep your car clean. Chemicals can stick to dust. So if your dashboard gets dusty, they can linger even longer.
As long as you do that stuff, you probably don’t need to worry too much. But people online are joking it’s another good reason to buy used.