What do You Not Pack?

What do You Not Pack?

When you move there are some things that need special handling and certain types of packaging, but there are also items that some moving companies simply will not move.  Even if you decide on a DIY move, you should know what these items are so that you can prepare as best you can.

Dangerous Items

Dangerous goods are items that most moving companies won’t move at all.  These materials are often flammable, explosive or corrosive.  Moving them is often illegal.  Check with the EPA on proper disposal before you move or ask a neighbor if they can use them.  Here’s a list of some examples of dangerous items:

  • Sterno
  • Acid
  • Darkroom Chemicals
  • Gasoline
  • Motor Oil
  • Lighter Fluid
  • Pesticides
  • Fertilizer
  • Paints
  • Paint Thinner
  • Kerosene
  • Lamp Oil
  • Loaded Weapons


If you are not moving long-distance, you can likely pack and move your perishable items safely.  Just ensure that you package them correctly and are extremely careful with things like meats, dairy products and eggs.  Spoiling can happen quickly, even in cold weather.

If you happen to be moving a long distance, don’t take any perishables with you.  Ask friends and neighbors if they could use any of the food items before you throw them away.  Oh, and if you have plants, you might have to leave them behind as well.  Live plants are not an item a moving company can move.

Valuable Items

Think of things that you might grab as you run out of the house in a fire – those are your high-value items.  Think twice about sending items like this with the moving company:

  • Personal Files (marriage licenses, passports, birth certificates, etc.)
  • Home Movies
  • Address Books
  • Flight Tickets
  • Bank and Credit Card Statements
  • Photos and Photo Albums
  • School Records
  • Letters
  • Children’s Artwork
  • Medicine
  • Back-up Computer Files

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