Moving Blog
August 23, 2021

What Your Movers Won't Move

bottles that need to be movedBy Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group 

Congratulations, you're the smart one who booked your moving company early, walked through your house with a moving company rep to determine how many trucks and crew you need, and neatly packed and labeled your boxes.

Now, did you read the fine print on the contract? If you didn't read the whole thing, and most people don't get past the dates and numbers before their eyes glaze over, find it, have a seat, and read it now. Pour an extra cup of coffee if you need to, but once you get to the part about what the professional movers can't put on the truck, chances are pretty good that contract will have your undivided attention.

What You Can't Transport

Which of these is NOT allowed on a moving truck? Are any of these illegal for the crew to load and transport, or is it just company policy? The answer is a very straightforward, it depends.

  • Philodendron
  • Lawnmower
  • Fireworks
  • Cash

The only thing listed above that CAN go on the truck is the lawn mower--if the gas and oil tanks have been drained. Houseplants normally can't cross state lines--that's a legal issue--and moving companies don't want any pests living in leaves or the soil jumping ship into the truck itself.

Explosives, such as fireworks, are forbidden.

And moving companies will not be responsible for valuables on the truck. Your homeowner’s insurance may cover any material losses, but most likely will not replace lost cash. Take it to the bank and retrieve it once you're settled or carry it with you.

What's Illegal to Transport

So, the list of what you can't pack and load isn't such a bore, after all. These are some other things that movers won't load, and the reasons why not. 

  • Anything that is flammable, corrosive, explosive or combustible and can in theory put the lives of the crew and the equipment at risk, is illegal. So, a lawnmower with an empty gas/oil tank is okay, but an aerosol can of disinfectant is not.
  • Plants--some states have rules on what houseplants can cross the state line. Mites and pests that aren't an issue in some states are huge hazards in others, so leave your houseplants for the neighbors or give them to your friends. If you're bringing the pots, clean them with bleach before you load them
  • Alcohol--laws differ among states. Be safe and have an “Empty the Bar” party before you move.
  • Gasoline 

What Most Company Policies Prohibit

Each moving company has its own list of prohibited items, but these are the standard items you can expect to leave or bring yourself.

Chemicals are defined by their ability to interact with other matter and change the shape and substance of that matter. In layman's terms, this means that if you put weed killer and paint thinner on the truck together and they happen to connect under pressure or heat, really bad things can happen. And if you think a couple of bottles of nail polish and remover and a chemistry set won't pack enough of a wallop to matter, you would be wrong. So DO NOT pack the following.

  • Household Cleaners
  • Paint and Paint Remover--this includes nail polish
  • Pool chemicals
  • Pesticides, Weed Killers, and Fertilizers
  • Aerosol Cans
  • Fireworks

There are additional items, such as perishable foods, prescription medications, and family photos that are not recommended for transport on the moving van. And still other items of personal importance or sentimental value, such as wills, passports, jewelry, and your moving documents that should travel with you.

Remember that grocery delivery is a wonderful thing--order online and have your cleaning supplies, paper products, and foodstuffs delivered right after you've arrived at your new house.

If you have any questions about whether some items are okay to go on the moving van, think ahead, and ask your professional movers before moving day, especially if you need to make other plans for transport or donations.

Click HERE for A-1 Freeman Moving Group’s list of Non-Transportable Items.


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The Mickelson Family
The Mickelson Family
Best. Move. Ever!
Very pleased with the overall respect and care the men gave to my possessions. Even mailing me very quickly the only thing lost in transit. Would recommend to anyone needing a long distant move.

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