Alex is the founder of 9Kilo Moving, which he started to help people easily find and choose the right moving company to make their move as stress-free and seamless as possible. He has spent over 20 years working in the moving industry, so he knows every aspect of the business and uses his knowledge to write about the industry and give moving advice. More on about us page
Hazardous does not always mean heavy industrial chemicals,
look around you and you’ll find at least one hazardous item in your room. This
does not mean your bathroom and kitchen alone, even your bedroom houses
household hazardous waste. Don’t believe us? Right from the nail polish remover
on your dressing table to the thermometer in your first aid box is hazardous.
Sending this with your movers is not only harmful but also illegal.
You will chance upon such hazardous items while packing up your belongings while moving to a new home. You cannot ship hazardous items nor dispose of them like other belongings because such items act as a threat to the environment when disposed of improperly. Thankfully there are several ways to dispose of them, you just have to be aware of them! We are here just for that, so keep reading:
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Homes are filled with hazardous items, often people don’t
check the ingredients of the products they shop at the departmental store. This
is why people end up hoarding lots of hazardous products at home. The longer
you stay at your current home, the more hazardous items you’ll encounter around
the house. To make things easier for you, let us go room by room. This will
help you recollect any items that you miss out on.
In Your Bathroom: While packing up your bathroom items for the move, check the ingredients behind
every product. The products that have hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid,
ammonia, or bleach in them are hazardous. Acids used in some bathroom products
are corrosive, they can corrode metal and are very harmful if they come in
direct contact with skin.
In Your Kitchen: Almost
every other thing under your kitchen sink is hazardous. Drain cleaners,
disinfectants, and cleaning products are toxic; they’re harmful if consumed or
inhaled. You shouldn’t be emptying such products down the drain, because they
can harm the environment.
In Your Garage: The
spare cans of gasoline you store in the garage are most hazardous as they can
ignite and burn easily. Items like antifreeze, auto batteries, brake fluid,
engine cleaner are all hazardous in nature. Even something as basic as a spare
tire is harmful because waste tires can catch fire and release toxic smoke.
It’s illegal to dump waste tires and is punishable by law in the US, so yes,
tires are considered hazardous waste.
In Your Basement: The
batteries, paint thinners, furniture polish, or fireworks you store in your
basement are considered hazardous items. If you have pets, items like flea
powder and tick sprays are hazardous. In addition to that, most aerosol cans
like air fresheners are harmful as such substances can explode when exposed to
high temperatures or pressures.
By Your Pool And
Lawn: The propane tank you use for pool heating can ignite easily. Any pool
chemicals you use to clean your pool, the fertilizer, pesticides, weed killers
you use in your garden and the herbicides for the lawn are all hazardous. If
you have a barbeque grill in your yard, the charcoal lighter fluid can be
dangerous as it is highly flammable.
You can’t just dump that hazardous waste in the garbage
truck, the toxic substances contaminate resources, pollute the surroundings,
and harm the landfill employees. Taking hazardous items like batteries to
recycling units doesn’t solve the problem every time. You need to go by the
proper method to dispose of toxic waste safely, like taking them to hazardous
waste disposal sites.
Your hazardous waste is then detoxified to reduce the
release of all the toxic gases and then treated at an incinerator. In some US
states, incineration of hazardous waste is directed to produce steam, which
drives the turbines for the generation of electric power. Awesome, right? This
is surely going to motivate you to dispose of that hazardous waste in the right
manner. Let’s see how you can do it:
Cities and towns within the same state can have different
laws when it comes to disposing of hazardous waste. You must research the laws
that apply to your area to avoid facing penalties or hefty fines. Just start
Googling about the waste management laws in your city/town/county, there will
be details about packing and segregating your hazardous waste. If you research
well, the contact and location of your nearest hazardous waste collection site
will pop up in the searches.
Once your search results showed you the nearest hazardous
waste collection site, call them up and enquire about drop-off days during the
week. When you are packing to leave for the waste collection, never mix the
hazardous waste. It can be an extremely dangerous move. For instance, mixing
ammonia and bleach causes chest pain and coughing, if things escalate, it can
be fatal. Keep all the products in their original containers and secure them
against leaking. Going thoroughly through your local area’s official website
will help you pack your hazardous waste properly according to guidelines.
If a traveling wastemobile visits your city or town every
week, it can save you a trip to the hazardous waste collection site. Check the
schedule of the traveling wastemobile that visits your region and keep your
hazardous waste ready a day before it is scheduled to arrive. Enquire about
which hazardous waste will not be picked by the wastemobile beforehand to save
you hassle when it arrives. Wastemobiles pick up wastes like ammonia,
antifreeze, batteries, bleach, cleaners, and fertilizers. But some items are
not accepted like compressed gas cylinders, ammunition, explosives, medicine,
and tires among others.
Local governments, nonprofit organizations, and communities
often host waste disposal events. Keep a track of such events and take your
hazardous waste to such events before you move. Just join Facebook groups of
communities or organizations that often host such events so you can be updated.
You can even ask around the neighborhood if they know of any waste collection
events. These are one or two-day events that allow locals to bring their waste
to a centralized location.
We know moving is tough and takes up all of your time. If
you have no time to drive to the waste collection site or attend a waste
disposal event, ask for home pickup services. Call up your nearest waste
disposal company and enquire about their home pickup services. At a service and
labor fee, they provide home pickup of hazardous household waste. Just remember
to inquire about specifications, like how to sort your waste and if there are
some hazardous items they don’t pick. This way, you don’t mix up items that are
disallowed with the rest of the waste you send with them.
There must be a lot of accumulated medical waste at your
home if anyone in the family needs insulin shots or prescription drugs. If your
local waste management company refuses to collect it, you can drop it at a mini
disposal box outside your nearest pharmacy. If you couldn’t find a disposal box
outside any pharmacy, you can dispose of your medical waste in a dropbox
outside any hospital, doctor’s office, or clinic. Take all those prescription
drugs and hand them over to designated drop-off centers. While disposing of
syringes, just remember to store them in puncture-resistant containers before
you drop them in a disposal box.
If you use organic cleaning products and are conscious about
using hazardous items in your home, then you might have hazardous waste only in
the garage. Rather than making a trip to a hazardous waste collection site,
drive over to any local gas station. Some gas stations accept automotive waste,
so you can drop your transmission fluid, diesel fuel, or brake fluid at the
station. But while doing so, never mix any automotive waste products with motor
oil, as doing so can be very dangerous.
You can share your hazardous products like cleaning
products, fertilizers, or gasoline with friends or choose to donate it.
Institutions like homeless shelters, community centers, schools will appreciate
your donations and put them to use. This ensures that the hazardous products in
your home were actually used and did not turn to ash in an incinerator.
In the hurry to dispose of the hazardous waste before your
moving date arrives, don’t forget to take safety precautions while handling
them. If you take shortcuts or skip reading the instructions on the labels of
hazardous products, it can be quite harmful. There are some safety precautions
you need to take while collecting and sorting the hazardous waste around your
home to dispose of them.
It’s better to wear gloves and goggles while handling
hazardous products around the house. Some hazardous items burn the skin on
contact or harm the eyes because of the fumes. In case you’re handling diluted
cleaning products, then gloves are not an utmost necessity, but do wash your
hands after handling any such products.
Read instructions on labels of hazardous products carefully.
Specific instructions like usage steps, precautions while using, and what to do
in case of emergency are detailed in labels behind hazardous products. You
should also pay attention to storage instructions, since storing flammable
liquids in the heat or near direct sunlight can lead to fire hazards. Acids
should not be stored or placed closely together.
Remember these details when you’re collecting all hazardous
items in the house to carry them to the hazardous waste disposal site. If you
have packed them and are waiting for the traveling wastemobile to come, never
keep all items on the porch where there is direct sunlight.
Most of us forget the chemistry we were taught in school,
ignoring the properties of some substances can lead to reactions, often
unfavorable. An easy way to avoid any accidents while handling hazardous waste
is to never mix them. Most chemicals can cause angry reactions or release
poisonous fumes when mixed with other chemicals.
Once you move to your new home, introspect and decide if you
want to shop for new products that are hazardous. A drain cleaner that might
look innocent under creative packaging can cause ugly harm to the environment
in the long run. Go ahead and buy hazardous items if they are unavoidable like
brake fluid. But if you can minimize the use of harmful chemicals at home, like
using organic homemade cleaning products over hazardous cleaning products, it
will go a long way in protecting the environment. Let’s look at how you can do
When you dispose of the hazardous waste in your home, you’ll
be surprised by the amount of hazardous waste that was lying around your home.
See this as the right time to minimize the usage of hazardous products in your
life. If you really need to use hazardous materials, take care while disposing
Can I Carry Hazardous
Waste In My Car?
It is unlawful to carry hazardous waste in vehicles in many
US cities. Like in California, it is unlawful for anyone to transport hazardous
wastes in their vehicle. Only the people with a valid registration issued by
the Department of Toxic Substances Control can transport such waste in their
vehicles. Check the local waste management laws in your city, it will give you
a fair idea if you can carry hazardous waste in your car.
Can Any Hazardous Items Harm My Pet?
Pet products like flea powder protect your pet from ticks and fleas, but the harmful pesticides in them can harm your pet as they sometimes lead to nerve damage. Using lawn fertilizers or insecticides in your lawn and garden pose a threat to your pet since pets run barefoot and often roll around on the grass. Mothballs attract the attention of pets due to the curious smell, the fumes can harm pets, ingestion of mothballs can also lead to death in extreme cases.
See also: Things Movers Will Not Move | Avoid Packing these Things When Moving
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