Will Aerosols Explode on a Plane? Busting Myths

Will Aerosols Explode on a Plane? Busting Myths

 You’re packing for that much-awaited trip, and then you freeze. You’re staring at your deodorant can and wondering, “Will aerosols explode on a plane?” In this article, we’ll cut through the noise and get straight to the facts. Oh, and we promise to keep it light because nobody wants to feel like they’re back in chemistry class, right?

Will Aerosols Explode on a Plane? Busting Myths

What Are Aerosols?

Before we dive into the deep end, let’s talk basics. Aerosols are simply tiny particles or liquid droplets suspended in a gas. Think deodorant, whipped cream, or even spray paint.

Will Aerosols Explode on a Plane: The Science

Alright, let’s get nerdy—but not too nerdy. Changes in air pressure and temperature are the big concerns when it comes to the question of will aerosols explode on a plane. However, most commercial airplanes are well-engineered to keep these factors stable throughout the flight.

The Official Word

According to the FAA and TSA, you’re allowed to bring aerosol cans in checked luggage. But there are some rules, so don’t go packing your entire spray paint collection.

What Happens in Reality

Have you ever heard a news report that said, “Today, an airplane was evacuated because someone’s deodorant exploded”? The truth is, the likelihood of this occurring is extremely low. Cases of will aerosols explode on a plane going horribly wrong are so rare, they’re almost unheard of. Despite the myths, real-world evidence suggests your aerosol can is not a ticking time bomb.

Will Aerosols Explode on a Plane? Busting Myths
What Happens in Reality

Common Myths

You’ve probably heard all sorts of wild claims—like aerosols will always explode due to changes in air pressure when you’re flying at 30,000 feet. Or maybe you’ve come across the one that says they’ll freeze and then explode in the icy cold temperatures up there. In reality, the chances of aerosols creating chaos are extremely low.

The Everyday Items That Are Actually Dangerous

Spoiler alert: It’s not aerosols. Lithium batteries or flammable items like lighters are more likely to cause issues. But don’t worry. Your hairspray is not a ticking time bomb. Despite the myths and scary stories, real-world evidence strongly suggests that your aerosol can is not a ticking time bomb waiting to ruin your vacation.

Should You Worry?

Short answer? No. Long answer? Noooooooo. Concerns about will aerosols explode on a plane are largely overblown (pun intended).

Airline Policies: A Quick Guide

Navigating through the maze of airline rules can be a bit daunting, especially when it comes to what you can and can’t bring on board. Different airlines have different policies, but the majority usually align with the guidelines set by the TSA. It’s a good idea to consult your airline’s website for specifics, especially if you’re carrying something unusual. In fact, with the growing list of prohibited items, it’s better to be safe than sorry. So take a few minutes to check and double-check because the last thing you want is a run-in with security over a can of shaving foam.

Will Aerosols Explode on a Plane? Busting Myths
Airline Policies

When in Doubt, Check it in

Still nervous? Just check in your aerosols. They’ll be in the cargo hold, living their best life with your packed socks and undies.


Will aerosols explode on a plane? The answer is highly unlikely. Airplanes are expertly engineered to maintain stable internal conditions, including pressure and temperature. This significantly minimizes the risk associated with aerosol cans spontaneously combusting. Moreover, real-world evidence and official guidelines corroborate the notion that aerosols are generally safe to take on board.

Final Thoughts

While you should always follow airline guidelines and common sense, there’s generally no need to give up your favorite spray-on products. Many people are worried, asking themselves, “Will aerosols explode on a plane?” but the truth is, the odds are extremely low.


How many aerosol cans can I carry on a plane?

Check with your airline, but generally, you can carry one in your carry-on and more in your checked luggage.

Are there any types of aerosols that are not allowed?

Flammable or hazardous aerosols are generally not allowed.

What size of aerosol can be permitted?

Usually, up to 3.4 ounces (100 milliliters) in your carry-on.

What if I forget and leave an aerosol in my carry-on?  

At worst, it will be confiscated at the security checkpoint.

Is the 3-1-1 liquid rule applicable to aerosols?

Yes, the 3-1-1 rule for liquids generally applies to aerosols, too.

So go ahead, pack that deodorant. Your fellow passengers will thank you!

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