All posts by Lisa Danca

car battery

Things to Avoid Putting on the Moving Van

Packing for a move is a gargantuan task. Finding the right number and size of boxes, wrapping breakables, and finding the time to get it all done, is just the start of the process that ends in a successful move to a new home. 

There are some items that you will want to avoid packing and putting on the moving van. We have separated them into prohibited items according to federal law, restricted items depending upon permission by your movers, and special consideration items that you may want to move separately. 

Prohibited Items 

There are many common household items that are prohibited by the federal government to be included in your moving van. 

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reports “Federal law forbids you to ship hazardous materials in your household goods boxes or luggage without informing your mover. A violation can result in five years imprisonment and penalties of $250,000 or more (49 U.S.C. 5124).”

Many prohibited items are things that you may find in your garage or basement and may not even think twice about them. Here is a list of our references but you will want to confirm a full list from the FMSCA. 

  • Weed sprays 
  • Fertilizers 
  • Gardening chemicals 
  • Paints
  • Detergents
  • Acids
  • All flammables, including matches and lighter fluid
  • Explosives and corrosives
  • Fireworks
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Car batteries
  • Motor oils and fuel
  • Ammonia and liquid bleach
  • Pool chemicals 
  • Poisons and Pest killers
  • Bottled gas or propane
  • Lamp oil
  • Charcoal

Restricted Items 

There are some items that your moving company may have their own requirements about including prior permission to have these items on the moving van. These could include: 

  • Firearms 
  • Ammunition
  • Clean gas tanks
  • Scuba tanks
  • Power tools 

Special Considerations

There are also some items that homeowners may want to transport on their own instead of putting on the moving truck. This short list really depends upon the distance of the move, the personal preferences of the people moving, and what items you may need right up until the time you move. 

  • Medical information and files
  • Family documents such as passports and birth certificates
  • Plants
  • Prescriptions
  • School records
  • Checkbooks, credit cards, and financial records
  • Jewelry 
  • Family heirlooms
  • Collectibles 

While these lists are not exhaustive, they can help you plan what NOT to pack for the big moving day. As you go room to room packing, especially the garage and basement, consider these items prior to the day of moving so you can make plans to dispose of them properly. 

Many of the prohibited items are included on the list due to the fact that improper storage or spillage during the move could potentially start a fire or cause an explosion, thus destroying your personal possessions during the move. 

Talk to our moving specialists who can help you determine what to pack and what to handle and dispose of prior to moving day. 


5 Summer Moving Considerations

The peak moving season lies between the months of April and September when an estimated 32 million Americans move every year. Of those months, June, July, and August tend to be the busiest of all for moving companies across the nation. 

Summer, therefore, ranks top among the seasons for Americans to move whether it is across town or across the country. The reasons are varied but mostly center around the fact that children are out of school at that time, making for a good time to make a move. Additionally, many businesses have a lighter than usual workload during the summer months, making it easier for parents to take time off to schedule, plan, and execute a move. 

Unfortunately, summer also comes with some challenges, the first of which is the potential for soaring temperatures and high humidity, depending upon your location. In addition to the heat is the fact that summer is a moving company’s busiest season, which means you will want to book well in advance if you can. 

Here are a few tips for your moving plan if a summer move is in your sights. 

Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate

Moving is physically and mentally exhausting. Even if you are not the one lifting the boxes or making multiple trips to the moving van, make sure to be aware of your water intake. It’s also a good idea to have a cooler of bottled water for your movers as a way of keeping them hydrated if the temps soar and the humidity climbs. They will greatly appreciate it! 

Reserve Your Moving Company Early 

If you know several months in advance of your moving date, house closing, or job relocation plan as far ahead as you can. Book your moving company and schedule a time when you can have a manager walk through your home to give you an estimate of the cost and time that will be needed. 

pets and moving

Plan Your Packing 

If you are not planning on having your moving company assist you with packing, you will need to organize your time and plan accordingly to get everything packed in time. Since summer can be brutally hot, get lots of packing done in the early morning hours or late evening hours when it is cooler. 

Arrange for Child & Pet Care 

Moving can be stressful no matter what the weather or temperature. It can be downright torturous if the heat and humidity are high. 

Plan for a playdate for your child where they can stay out of the heat and chaos of a move. The same goes for your pets who may be very unsettled with visitors to the house and the movement of furniture. 

Consider Items that May Suffer Heat Damage

Items like medications, candles, electronics, artwork, records/CDs, and other items can be damaged when exposed to high heat. Be sure to inform your movers of any items you are concerned about. Mastodon Moving has temperature-controlled storage facilities that can be used to keep items out of the high heat during a move. 

Are you ready for a summer move? Check out our ultimate checklist for your move and get planning! 

professional packing

The Benefits of Professional Packing Services

What’s the worst part of moving? In our experience, families and businesses that are on the move, report that the most painful part of moving is packing and unpacking years worth of belongings. Thankfully, there’s a solution to this dreadfully slow and arduous process. 

Hire our team to do the packing and unpacking for you. 

Professional packing services are a huge time and energy saver for most families and businesses that find themselves needing to move from point A to point B. Here are the top reasons why many of our clients use our services to pack and unpack their homes. 

the key to packing

Saves Time & Energy

Moving can be a huge drain on your time and energy. If you are busy with work, family obligations, and children in the months leading up to your move, you could probably use some help to take some of the tasks off your growing list of things to do for your move. 

Using packing services can instantly unburden you and free up your time for managing the other logistics of your move. Professionals know how to sort, organize and properly wrap belongings so they make it to your new location safely. They also know what size box, crate, or speciality container your valuables should be packed in. 

Save Money

While it may not seem like a money saving service, it can be, depending upon the amount of time you would need to take off work and the number of boxes or containers you would need to buy/find. 

Instead of wasting your money buying boxes and using your vacation days to pack and unpack, this service can save you from using that precious paid time off. Usually when you hire your movers to pack/unpack for you, the price includes all the supplies necessary from boxes and tape, to inventory lists and bubble wrap. 

Less Risk of Damage 

Damage to your belongings is always a risk when moving homes or businesses. Thankfully, more experienced packers such as members of our team, know how to pack so that your precious china, pictures, and high valued items make it to your new location safe and secure. 

No one wants the hassle of getting repairs on their tv, electronics, or artwork once they arrive at their new place. Licensed and insured packers can guarantee a safe journey for your valued items.

Reduces Stress

When professional packers take on the task of packing your home, they can take some of the stress off you in trying to carve out the right amount of time to pack all of your belongings. All you have to do is supervise and let them know if any items can be donated, tossed, or are special in any way. Your professional packers can also label and mark each box so you have no stress as to where all of your items are once you reach your new location.