Rules for Moving to Denver--What Movers Can't Move

by Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group

Moving - Moving BoxesAs if moving weren't anxiety-filled enough, did you recognize that there are some belongings your movers can't transport?

When you hire a moving company, they should provide you a list of the items that they can't haul to your new residence in Denver. They are not trying to make your life more complicated, they're heeding the U.S. Department of Transportation statute (49 CFR 100-185) which spells out hazardous materials that are not okay to load on a commercial vehicle. There are some things on the list of non-transportables that are not hazardous, but that will not endure being on a moving van and the moving company will not load.

Since you are a wise law-abiding citizen, it's most likely never crossed your mind that you are actually harboring dangerous explosives in your bathroom and kitchen cabinets. You've possibly peered around the garage and wondered about your lawn mower going on the moving van, but there are several other items that are considered dangerous and you'll need to be accountable for removing from your house.

Anything with chemicals is a definite moving no-no. This is due to the fact that chemicals have a bad tendency of blowing up if they're mixed with other chemicals, which can easily happen in a moving truck. A good rule of thumb is that if you cannot put the thing in question in your regular trash for pick up, it shouldn’t be packed up and put on the truck. So not only must you discharge the gas tanks on any lawn machinery (mowers, leaf blowers, weed whackers, etc), either use any fertilizers and grass seed or give it to your nearby relatives—a little Miracle-gro and a little leaking gasoline might produce a dreadful product. And guess what—any losses will be your responsibility because you were advised what not to load on the moving van. It's not the moving company's obligation to double check all your boxes for items that aren’t allowed, so make sure that any hazardous items-including old paint, batteries, aerosol cans, charcoal, and paint thinner—are NOT boxed for the trucks. The ideal thing to do is take them to your local hazardous waste drop-off facility or give them away to someone who can use them.

What not to pack for movingWhat about your houseplants? Food? Your cat? Believe it or not, a couple people have asked that their pets be transported on the moving truck—the answer is a firm no. That the moving company can't transport your plants might be a bit more surprising. Interstate moves create an issue due to the fact that some states keep a watchful eye on foreign vegetation being brought in, and you do not want to unintentionally bring pests to either the moving van or your new house. If plants are moving more than 150 miles you may need to get a special license to move them—so if you're the one who transported in canker worms or aphids, your new state can find you. As for food items in your cupboard, only pack up new, non-perishable stuff with a long shelf life. Or, donate your unopened canned items, cereals, and cookies to a local food bank, and start fresh at your new residence. Trash anything perishable or open, unless you're going to ice down coolers and move them in your own car.

Although your valuables are not hazardous goods or likely to start an ash borer invasion, most moving companies are reluctant to transport jewelry, cash, stock certificates and other costly belongings. The risks of being lost are too great, bring them along with you in a carry on, or put them with other important documents.

Other things you might not think about as being hazardous—nail polish, cleaning supplies, liquid bleach, fire extinguishers—are also not allowed to be transported on the moving truck. Again, anything chemical or flammable is not approved on a commercial truck, so be smart and dispose of or pack those items separately. The best alternative is to properly dispose of these things and buy everything new once you have moved, so you'll have brand new fertilizer and nail polish to go with your brand-new home.