POLICE are reminding people to keep a 'clean car' and not leave any items on display to tempt would-be thieves.

Theft from cars tends to increase, particularly in tourist areas, with the arrival of the warmer weather and police are reminding the public to help stop thieves from helping themselves.

A police spokesman said : "It isn't just sat nav's, phones or other electronic items that need to be out of sight – that muddy old coat or rucksack on the back seat may be worthless, but a thief won't know if you've left money or cards in the pocket or not.

"It's a good idea not to leave i-pod or sat-nav leads on display either, as thieves will be tempted to check under the seats or in glove boxes to find the gadget. Don't create temptation."

Police say insurance excess and the cost of repairs is normally more than the value of the goods stolen.

Police have issued these top tips: · Lock the doors, windows, boot and sunroof every time you leave your car - however briefly.

· Keep a "clean" car, don't leave anything on display valuable or not. Remember, the cost of replacing a broken window is often far more than the value of goods stolen.

· Try and park in designated, busy and well-lit places. Avoid leaving your car in isolated dark spots particularly overnight.

· If you are parking in isolated car parks for extended periods for example to go walking, take everything with you. Leave valuables at home where possible. Be aware of who might be watching you if you are locking things in the boot.

Never leave the following anywhere in your car: · Cheque, credit and debit cards.

· Driving documents and personal correspondence. They could help a thief to sell your car or provide a cover story if stopped by the police.

· Cash, wallets or handbags.

· Satellite navigation systems · Mobile phones. 40% of car break-ins involve the theft of a mobile phone. Mark your phone and battery with your postcode and keep a note of its serial number in a safe place. This will help the police reunite the phone with its owner if it is stolen and subsequently recovered.

· Radio/Cassette Players/CD Players should always be removed where possible. All equipment should be marked both visibly and permanently with the vehicle registration number. Make a note of the serial number and keep it in a safe place.

· Register your car and its contents with www.immobilise.com To report someone acting suspiciously call 999. For non-emergency calls dial 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.