Can You Bring Aerosol Cans on a Plane? Will They Explode?

Having unusual questions about packing before a flight is pretty normal. And these confusions are usually very specific. Questions such as can you bring cigarettes on a plane and even regarding lighting one on board are common. So, your concern about aerosol cans exploding in checked luggage isn’t a very weird one.

Apparently, there are multiple products that use aerosol cans. And if one of those cans explodes, it’s not going to be a pleasant trip anymore. So, let’s get deep into this matter on the probabilities of such cans getting exploded, plus rulings about carrying these aerosols.

The Chances of Aerosol Cans Explosion in Checked Luggage.

aerosol cans piled up

Yes, it can explode inside your checked luggage, but that’s a very rare situation. In circumstances of a fire break out or similar mishap, such possibilities are more likely to be true. But it’s not something that spontaneously would happen. And so, there’s not much to worry about carrying aerosol cans.

Usually, an aerosol can will explode when it’s not intact. Also, using some sort of sharp object to pierce it will lead to an explosion. Too much pressure build-up inside can also be another reason. If it’s inside a very hot spot, such risks become more prominent.

The aircraft luggage area is a very different case. These often have regulated temperature, and so, an aerosol properly packed inside the suitcase is supposed to be safe. Keep in mind; it’s not the same when you take one inside a plane because there is a chance of triggering a fire.

As passengers carry laptops with batteries inside the plane. These are not allowed in checked luggage for a reason. If a laptop with batteries on comes in contact with an aerosol can, overheating can cause pressure to increase. And this may result in an explosion.

This is why you cannot pack batteries inside your checked luggage, as aerosol cans may react dangerously. And this also means you are allowed to bring aerosol inside your checked luggage.

However, these cans have quite a few serious rules and regulations that you must know about and strictly follow. And that’s exactly what I’ll try to sum up in the next few segments.

The Chances of Aerosol Cans Explosion in Checked Luggage.

Certain Types of Aerosols Are Permitted While Some Are Not

There are a few categories of aerosol products that you cannot bring inside the checked bag. While there are also permissible products that come inside such cans, like your favorite hair spray.

Aerosol Products That You Can Bring in Checked Bag

You can pack body spray, hair spray, perfumes, shaving cream or foam, antiperspirant, and deodorant that comes in aerosol packaging. You can also bring spray paint or one 118 ml container of pepper spray in your luggage. Are you wondering if pepper spray explodes? Read further…

Dry shampoo, or insecticides that come in aerosol bottles are also okay to bring. However, make sure there’s no hazardous material label on it. For the ones that have a HAZMAT sign on the packaging, you cannot bring them. You can also bring your disinfectant sprays, suntan lotion, and Lysol spray.

packing cosmetics for checked baggage

The Aerosols You Can’t Bring in Checked Baggage

A few aerosols that are very flammable can’t be inside your checked luggage. And these are cooking sprays, any sort of paint, and starch that come in a spray formula. Also, some consider tear gas, butane, propane, and compressed gas cylinders as aerosols, which is not strictly false. These are also banned inside checked luggage.

Keep In Mind the Federal Aviation Administration Regulations

Aerosol cans inside your checked baggage would need to maintain the FAA regulations. You can bring them in limited quantities, also only the allowed ones. According to FAA, all sorts of toiletry aerosols or medicinal products are permissible to bring.

Another good way to determine the allowance is to consider if the aerosol product will touch your skin when using. If it does not, there’s a good chance of the product being rejected inside checked-in luggage.

Also, the product must have a cap or lid so that the nozzle or button does not spray when inside the luggage. If there’s no lid on it, the baggage handler will remove that aerosol product when discovered.

Size Related Rules

The size regulations are applicable for both international and domestic flights. And it definitely refers to the checked bag regulation; not for your carry-on bag or luggage when one is trying to bring aerosol cans.

When bringing any medicinal or toiletry aerosol inside your luggage, ensure it’s not more than 500ml. The total quantity of all aerosol products you bring should not exceed 2 liters.

And this is the permissible quantity for each person. So don’t confuse it for a per-checked bag rule. For example, you can carry 4 cans of 500 ml aerosol products for a total of 2 liters.

The smaller ones that are less than 3.4 ounces can go in your carry-on luggage. But anything more than that must be inside the checked luggage. This is also a strict rule for carry-on luggage that you cannot help but follow.

When Packing the Aerosol Cans Inside Checked Baggage

When packing the aerosol products, pay extra attention to its lid. Make sure it does not come off. As if the cap somehow manages or escapes its can and gets inside your luggage, the bag handler may believe it’s a product that does not have a lid. And in such a case, the officer may simply toss that can away.

Another really important thing is releasing pressure. By now, you have an idea about the whole explosion risk related to the aerosol can. You can reduce this risk by simply spraying a little product to release the pressure.

Especially for the cans that are newly bought. As usual, these have some sort of gasses in the upper part. And by spraying a bit of content inside, you’ll be able to release a good amount of pressure.

To make sure the can does not leak or explode, you should also prevent it from rattling around your luggage. Pack aerosol cans securely since there’s a chance of denting that can lead to piercing them. Make sure the cans won’t move, so pack aerosol cans in the most secure way.

And finally, make sure there are no flammable liquids next to it. After reading all of the previous points, this tip is now a no-brainer. Avoid cramming or rushing so you won’t miss any safety details. Never pack any flammable items such as lighter or matches close to your aerosol items.

5 Things That You Should NEVER Put in Your Checked Luggage

Wrap Up

Aerosol cans may explode in checked luggage only when you don’t pay enough attention to packing it properly and finding more about the safe ways to pack it inside your baggage.

Hopefully, now that’s not going to be the case. As I tried my best to keep this whole guide complete with the information, you should now be knowledgeable enough when considering bringing aerosol cans inside your checked items. Have a Safe Flight!

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