Here’s a List of Items Movers Won’t Move and Tips on What to Do With Them

Although they may seem benign and safe, many common household objects that end up on the list of items movers won’t move can actually be very dangerous. Besides anything hazardous, professionals can also refuse to transport valuables and perishables. To avoid packing something they can’t move, take a look at some of the things you’ll have to deal with before your relocation begins.

While there are plenty of ways to organize a move, everybody knows that hiring a professional is the most reliable way to do it. Since every reputable mover has a specific list of non-negotiable objects that they never move, learning about them in advance will give you enough time to deal with them accordingly.

Do Movers Move Everything?

Since you’re reading this blog, the answer already presented itself. While most professionals will do everything they can to make your entire relocation process much more manageable, not even the best movers in Chicago will move everything. The US Department of Transportation and the Environmental Protection Agency’s safety standards prevent moving companies in Chicago, IL from dealing with “non-allowable items”. If you’re not sure whether a mover can relocate a particular item, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Will the item leak?
  • If a leak occurs, will it damage other objects?
  • Can it explode?
  • Can heat and cold affect it?
  • Can it cause a fire?
  • Is it perishable or prone to spoiling?

Answering yes to any of these questions means that the item in question will not be packed by any reputable mover in Chicago, IL, so you will have to deal with it on your own.

Will Movers Move Things Not in Boxes?

While you’re certainly going to pack dishes in boxes, you will have a hard time finding a box big enough to fit your couch. Once you’re done packing books and other smaller belongings, the general rule is to leave major appliances and furniture to the professionals. This also includes anything that needs to be disassembled or requires special handling.

Can You Hire Movers to Move One Item?

What happens if you already moved most of your stuff, but you need some help with moving a single object? The good news is that most professional movers in Chicago are more than happy to give you a single-item quote. A few factors will determine the price, like the number of movers required to move the object. For example, if you’re relocating a piano, more people are needed to move it, especially if it has to be carried across several flights of stairs.

A man and a woman going over everything they've packed
Make sure you haven’t packed any of the non-negotiable items

What Items Will Movers Not Move? Hazardous Material Should Never Be Packed

Think of it this way, if the item can’t be safely disposed of with the rest of your trash, it’s very likely that local movers in Chicago will not move it. While you may find it surprising, plenty of common household materials can become hazardous under the right circumstances. There are many hazard classifications out there, but almost all relocation non-allowable objects can be categorized as one of the following:

  • Corrosives – Any item that can cause significant damage when leaked should never be packed. These include all kinds of acids, bases, and other chemicals often found in many cleaning supplies and bleach.
  • Flammables – Chemicals that can easily ignite at room temperatures will also have to be dealt with without professionals. Many corrosives would also fall into this category, but some other flammables include alcohol, motor oil, antifreeze, nail polish and polish remover, gasoline, and so on.
  • Explosives – A reactive substance that can release a large amount of energy that produces an explosion can be extremely dangerous if packed with the rest of your belongings. These include weapons, ammunition, fireworks, and anything under pressure like hair spray bottles and deodorants. Fertilizer is often found in home-made explosives, so it can’t be packed and moved by Chicago movers.

Packing Hazardous Materials Poses a Serious Risk to Your Entire Relocation

Tricking your mover by packing dangerous materials poses several risks to your entire relocation. Firstly, if an accident were to happen during the move, and your belongings get damaged, neither the insurance company nor the mover you hired won’t be held accountable, meaning you’re the only person liable for the damages.

To avoid adding “damage losses” to your relocation expenses checklist, contact the Environmental Protection Agency and see how you can dispose of these materials safely in your area. If you don’t want to get rid of anything, place the problematic objects in storage before you relocate.

Find a Safe Way to Move Some of the Hazardous Objects to Your New Home

Although a relocation company will never move anything hazardous, that doesn’t stop you from carrying over some of these supplies yourself. While getting rid of these is undoubtedly the best course of action, you can still find a safe way to move some of the objects from this list. For example, you can bring many cleaning supplies with you by ensuring that they can’t contaminate your other possessions. Even though they run on flammable substances like oil and gas, most yard tools and equipment can be safely moved simply by emptying their tanks before they get loaded onto the truck.

 Gun and bullets
You will have to move your firearms and ammunition on your own

Perishable Food Is Some of the Most Well-Known Items Movers Won’t Move

While it will not cause a large hazard like some of the previous entries on this list, perishable food always makes a huge mess when spilled. While the smells and odors are bad on their own, they tend to attract rats, insects, and other vermin that will cause a lot more damage to your belongings. They could also catch mold, which, if left untreated, could quickly spread to the rest of your stuff.

While some local movers and packers in Chicago don’t mind transporting your groceries, it’s better to avoid packing fresh, frozen, refrigerated food and open cans altogether. On the other hand, dry, canned goods are relatively safe to transport even though they are some of the most commonly forgotten things to pack. Just be sure they are packed carefully, and you’ll be good to go.

Try to Consume Perishable Food Before Moving Out

If you have a lot of perishable food that you don’t want to throw away, limit your grocery shopping a week before moving out and try to cook with the things you already have. You can also prepare some snacks for your going away party or see if someone you know could use the leftover goods you have. Finally, you can always donate food to one of the local charities such as Goodwill.

A well-stocked fridge
Empty your fridge and food storage reserves before moving out

It Is Almost Always Better to Move Valuables by Yourself

Irreplaceable belongings can hold immeasurable value for their owner, which makes them a sensitive category that many relocation companies simply will not move. The same goes for truly valuable objects like jewelry, expensive art pieces, money, and electronics. Before you hire a mover, check if any of your possessions fall under their non-allowable list, as you’ll need to move these by yourself.

Personal Documents, IDs, and Credit Cards Are Also Items Movers Won’t Move

A company may refuse to move anything that holds your sensitive data, like personal documents, credit cards, and medicine. Since you’ll likely need these almost right after moving in, it’s better to prepare all the essentials in a separate bag and avoid the confusion altogether.

Rings and other jewelry
Relocating to a new home? Bring jewelry and other valuables with you

Plants Are Very Delicate Things That Many Relocation Companies Avoid Moving

Local Chicago moving companies don’t have a clear consensus on relocating plants, so you’ll have to check with each mover before hiring them. Since they are excellent transmitters of invasive pests and parasites, it’s no wonder why many professionals simply refuse to move them. Additionally, most plants are delicate and sensitive to high temperatures, making them very prone to damage during transport.

If you’re relocating from one top neighborhood in Chicago to a suburb on the other side of the city, it might be better to leave the plants in someone else’s care. It would serve no purpose to move them such a great distance only for them to wither in the first few days of moving in. If you’re really bent on relocating your plants to your new home, the best solution would be to move them in pots with your vehicle. Check out how it can be done in the video below.

Pets Are Not Objects, So They Should Never Be Moved Inside a Truck

Whether you own a cat, dog, or an exotic animal, relocating a pet is never an easy task. Since they are living, breathing beings, it goes without saying that pets should not be moved in a truck like they were inanimate objects. Even if you wanted to, no moving company in Chicago would agree to transport them. In most cases, the most efficient way to move them would be with your vehicle.

Prepare Your Companion for Travel or Hire a Professional Pet Mover

Pets are even more sensitive than humans to moving stress, so even though you’re relocating locally, you’ll need to prepare your pet for the trip. While the process will differ significantly depending on the type of pet you have, there are plenty of relocation hacks you can use to move them safely. Some pets like cats and dogs are known to jump out of vehicles in motion. To keep them safe and calm, get them accustomed to staying inside carriers for extended periods. Birds can also get stressed relatively quickly, so it’s better that they travel in covered birdcages.

Fish are a bit problematic, as you’ll need to change their water very often. While leaving them to a friend would likely be the best option, you can move them in a plastic bag filled with water or even set up a small fish tank in your car. For exotic pets, make sure that their containers have enough room and good ventilation, or they might overheat during the transport. If you can’t move your pet yourself, remember that you can always hire a company that specializes in pet transportation.

A sad dog in a carrier
Although your pet may not love staying in the carrier, it’s the best way to move your new home

Look for a Mover as Soon as You Deal With All the Non-Negotiables

Those were all the things that a majority of relocation companies will not move. Once you’ve dealt with them, getting a mover should be the next task on your relocation to-do list. If you’re in need of high-quality moving services in Chicago, Legit Movers are more than happy to help. Contact our representative for a consultation, and you’ll receive a free quote on any service you want.