May 20, 2022 by Wendy Hoke

What Not To Move

If you are moving, you have a lot of planning to do. And if you are hiring a professional moving company to help, you need to know in advance that there are some things a moving company will not accept. 

You will find plenty of tips on how to pack. But you need to know what not to pack as well. There are a number of items movers won’t move due to their hazardous, perishable, or irreplaceable nature.  

The things movers won’t move include hazardous items, perishable food, plants, pets, and irreplaceable items. But why do movers refuse to transport them? Typically, the issue is one of liability. Hazardous items may endanger the health and life of all participants in the house move, including the experienced relocation professionals. Some perishable items, like food, for example, are likely to go bad while in transit and cause a big mess. Other perishables, such as plants and pets, won’t likely survive the relocation trip. 

And federal law forbids moving companies from transporting such prohibited items, so the movers you select will be obliged to observe the established safety rules. 

Items a Moving Company Will Not Transport 

  • Gasoline, kerosene  
  • Petroleum products  
  • Yard equipment containing fuel 
  • Aerosol cans, deodorants  
  • Charcoal  
  • Pool chemicals  
  • Fire extinguishers  
  • Propane tanks 
  • Guns and ammunition 
  • Black powder 
  • Fireworks 
  • Lighter fluids 
  • Matches 
  • Acids, ammonia 
  • Motor oil 
  • Lamp oil 
  • Antifreeze 
  • Disinfectants 
  • Pesticides, fertilizer, weed killers 
  • Poisons 
  • Paint, paint thinners 
  • Paint-related materials 
  • Nail polish, nail polish remover 
  • Car batteries 
  • Cleaning supplies, bleach 
  • Liquor 

Moving companies will agree to transport yard equipment as long as such power equipment pieces have been previously drained of fuel and packed safely for transportation. 

Do not pack perishable foods as they will not be accepted by your movers. However, if you’re only moving short distance, you may choose to transport some of those non-allowables with your own vehicle. After all, liquor (most often wine bottles) and various cleaning supplies are usually safe as long as you don’t expose them to extreme heat. 

If you own firearms and ammunition, you must contact a licensed firearms dealer and arrange with them their shipment. Keep in mind that if you’re moving to a new state, that new state may have different gun laws than the start you’re about to leave. Make sure you research well the gun regulations in your destination before the move. 

In any case, contact your moving company for advice if you’re not sure whether it’s safe to take with you some of the hazardous goods listed above. 

Take Items of High Sentimental Value with You 

Most movers will decline to take items of high sentimental value – things that are irreplaceable.  

Think of an album of old photos – a priceless heirloom that has been handed down from generation to generation within a single family. How could a professional mover possibly compensate a customer for such a clearly irreplaceable item? 

Remember that you’re the one in charge of transporting your valuables. High-value items that you should not entrust to your moving company include: 

  • One-of-a-kind artwork  
  • Family heirlooms  
  • Photo albums  
  • Expensive jewelry  
  • Pricey electronics (phones, laptops, e-book readers, etc.) 
  • Personal documents (marriage licenses, passports, birth certificates, Social Security cards, medical records, etc.) 
  • Money 
  • Credit or debit cards 
  • Keys 
  • Valuable collections (stamps, coins, etc.) 
  • Sometimes it can be difficult to know what not to pack when you move. Make sure you get the non-allowables list from your moving company so that you won’t waste any time preparing and packing household items that you shouldn’t. Whenever in doubt even with the list of non-transportable items, simply contact your moving company and ask them – they should know the answer.

Looking for quality moving services?

Look no further. Get in touch with Alliance – learn why the world’s biggest innovating companies trust us.

Get a free quote

Are you a moving / service business?

Get more leads and work orders – grow your business with Alliance Vendorship Program.

Submit application now