Disposing of hazardous materials as you move

When you think of your upcoming move, the first thing which comes to your mind is usually the packing. And, for a good reason. It is a long, stressful process, full of difficult decision making. We would give you a small piece of advice here, and tell you that you should start as early as possible with your packing. Begin from the things which you don’t use often and work your way up to the items which you need on daily basis. We would also advise you to pack a survival box which would include all the things that you will need as soon as you move into your new home. This box should be either loaded last into the moving van or kept with you at all times.

But, more importantly, as you start your packing process, you will realize that there are some items which moving companies will not take into the van. These hazardous and dangerous materials should be disposed of before you have all of your possessions packed. We would suggest that you contact your moving company and ask them what are the items which they won’t transport, even after you read our list. So, shall we begin?

You should dispose of large appliances before you move, as they can be dangerous


If you are planning on getting a new fridge upon your move, your old one is definitely a hazardous large appliance situation.

We are talking here about the large, bulky and heavy appliances which you definitely have in your home that are outdated. Well, as weight means money in a moving process, we would advise you to carefully think about what you want to take with you and what you don’t. In other words, if your appliances are old or unusable, we would advise against transporting them. Be careful, though, when you make the decision to throw some of these away.

Washing machines or refrigerators are difficult to dispose of and they can pose a threat to the environment if this isn’t done correctly. Look up the local waste management services and inform yourself of their process. Most of them will dismantle the appliances and then recycle them. If you have trouble transporting your outdated appliances yourself to the waste management service, you can ask your movers to do it for you. Though, we would suggest that you ask for estimates for this, as well.

Medication is another hazardous material which you should dispose of before your relocation

While you’re going through your drawers in your bedroom, you will most likely stumble upon the one filled with your medicine. We would suggest that you go through your prescription medication and over-the-counter drugs carefully, while watching out for the dates of expiry. You are likely going to find a bunch of them which aren’t safe to use anymore.


Be careful of how you dispose of your out-of-date medication – they can be a hazardous item for your environment.

The trouble with disposing of these hazardous materials is that if you simply throw them away, it makes it very easy for thieves and drug addicts to steal the medicine. So, you might want to take a look at the packaging of some of your medications. They sometimes include instructions regarding disposing of the drugs. For example, if they can be safely flushed down the toilet or the sink. Another good idea is going to your city’s official website and checking if your community has a drug take-back program. That is a great way to get rid of these hazardous materials.

In the end, if you can’t find a good way to dispose of these substances, we would suggest making them undesirable for pets, children and dumpster divers. So, take them out of their original containers and mix them with something which would normally be searched through, like pet litter, dirt or coffee grounds. After you’ve done this, place the dangerous material into a sealable bag and dispose of it.

Some other hazardous items which you will need to dispose of as you move are your cleaning supplies

There are numerous hazardous items which your movers won’t take with them and are used for cleaning, etc. They can be cans of gasoline, antifreeze or other chemicals, old paint, ammonia, tile cleaner, drain cleaner and other cleaning supplies, fertilizers or pesticides, swimming pool chemicals and other common bathroom materials like rubbing alcohol. Now, before getting rid of these, be careful to leave enough to clean your home before your move, so that it will be ready for the new owners.

Now, getting rid of most of these hazardous materials will be a bit problematic, as you won’t be able to simply flush them down the toilet or throw them. After all, some of them can contaminate your environment. So, we would suggest that you check if your community has a pick-up service or a drop-off facility where these chemicals can be disposed of properly by professionals. Before handing the hazardous materials off, be sure to safely bottle them in secure containers, and not to mix them if you need to be repackaged. Label these containers before you drop them off at the hazardous waste facility.


Be careful of how you are disposing of your old microwave before you move – it can be a hazardous item for your environment

Hazardous materials which you should know

how to dispose of are also small appliances

We’ve already talked about the big ones, so let us quickly cover the topic of smaller appliances, as well. If you’ve got an old blender or microwave and you’re planning on purchasing a new one when you move, you should be able to dispose of the old one safely, right? Like with large appliances, there is the trouble of how to get rid of these. After all, you can’t simply leave them lying on the side of the road.

With that said, we would advise you to check if your community has a pick-up service for small appliances, or if the Best Buy near you is participating in a recycling program at the moment. In the end, if none of these work for you, you can always contact your local waste management company. They will dispose of the hazardous waste in a professional and safe manner without contaminating the environment.

We would remind you once more to be sure to contact all of these services and companies in a timely fashion before your move.