5 min article

Hazardous, restricted or regulated materials policy

We take great care to protect the health and safety of our members.

Our hazardous, restricted or regulated materials policy reflects this commitment to your safety by strictly adhering to government regulations on the transportation of dangerous goods.

Frequently Asked Questions

 

What hazardous materials are prohibited?

Our policy on hazardous, restricted or regulated materials is extensive and follows government regulations. Items like fireworks and certain explosive precursors are just some of the items that can't be sold on eBay. For a full list, please see our full policy below.

How should I send hazardous material I've sold?

For restrictions on shipping potentially hazardous materials – and those that are permitted to be transported – refer to the shipping guidelines from the U.S. Postal Service - opens in new window or tab and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) - opens in new window or tab or your particular carrier.

Read our full policy

Hazardous, restricted or regulated materials policy overview

For health and safety reasons, most hazardous materials (such as fire extinguishers, refrigerants, and radioactive materials) can't be listed on eBay.

The law prohibits shipping various hazardous products, though there are a few types that can be legally transported under certain conditions and if they're properly packaged and labeled. Those items can be sold on eBay, as long as the listing:

For more information on what you can and can't sell on eBay, review the guidelines below.

Make sure your listing follows these guidelines. If it doesn't, it may be removed, and you may be subject to a range of other actions, including restrictions of your buying and selling privileges and suspension of your account.

What are the guidelines?

Combustible items

Allowed Allowed
  • Books on fireworks, including books on how to make fireworks
  • Chemistry books
 
Restricted Restricted
 
Not allowed Not allowed
 

Fire extinguishers and fire grenades

Allowed Allowed
 
Restricted Restricted
  • Antique fire extinguishers or grenades need to clearly state in a listing what substance they are filled with .
 
Not allowed Not allowed
  • Fire extinguishers (including glass bulb fire extinguishers and brass fire extinguishers with a T-shaped handle) or grenades that contain carbon tetrachloride - opens in new window or tab. (Contact your local fire department for tips on safe disposal.)
 

Refrigerants

Generally, in order to sell refrigerants, the law requires sellers to make sure that the buyer is certified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Before listing these items, be sure to follow our guidelines below.

You should also check out the EPA website for information on alternative refrigerants - opens in new window or tab.

 
Allowed Allowed
  • Refrigerants contained within a household appliance or a vehicle
 
Restricted Restricted
  • To list a refrigerant, you have to include the following information in your description:
    • The buyer has to be EPA-certified.
    • The buyer has to show proof of certification before paying and before the item is shipped.
  • Used refrigerants can be sold only if allof these requirements are met:
    • The seller can show proof that the substance has been reclaimed by a person certified by the EPA.
    • The refrigerant is part of a household appliance that is being sold.
    • The refrigerant will be used only in a household appliance.
 
Not allowed Not allowed
 

Pesticides and poisons

See our pesticides policy as well.

 
Allowed Allowed
  • Information on the use of pesticides
  • Snakebite kits
 
Restricted Restricted
  • Flea and tick medications that have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and are sealed in their original packaging (see also our medical drugs and devices policy)
  • Pesticides can be listed if all of the following conditions are met:
    • The pesticide is registered by the EPA - opens in new window or tab and the U.S. state where the buyer is located.
    • The registration hasn't been suspended or canceled by the EPA or the U.S. state where the buyer is located.
    • The pesticide is not classified as restricted by the EPA - opens in new window or tab or the U.S. state where the buyer is located.
    • The container or original packaging is unopened and intact.
    • The pesticide’s package labeling complies with all federal and state requirements. A seller's item description on eBay has to be consistent with the product's label.
    • The container can be shipped in a way that complies with U.S. postal regulations.
    • The seller clearly states both of the following details in a listing:
      • The seller complies with all applicable federal and state laws and regulations and ensures that the buyer satisfies all applicable laws and regulations. 
      • The seller won't accept bids from, sell to, or ship to buyers located in a U.S. state where the item is not registered as a general-use or non-classified pesticide.
 
Not allowed Not allowed
 

Radioactive materials

Allowed Allowed
  • Geiger counters
  • Information about atomic or nuclear testing or energy
  • Warning badges for radioactive material
  • Warning signs for radioactive material
 
Restricted Restricted
  • Items containing only a trace amount of radioactive material (such as watches or gunsights)
  • Natural ore samples that have trace amounts of radioactivity
  • Tritium personal markers
 
Not allowed Not allowed
  • Atomic or nuclear blast items (such as hot rocks, items from a blast or testing zone, and Trinitite)
  • Items considered problematic by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) - opens in new window or tab.
  • Items described in a listing as radioactive
  • Nuclear materials
  • Radioactive waste or contaminated materials
  • Radium
  • Raw depleted uranium
  • Tritium in large amounts (such as certain types of glow sticks and exit signs)
 

Other hazardous materials

Restricted Restricted
 
Not allowed Not allowed
  • Asbestos and items containing asbestos, such as collectible gas masks
  • Chloroform products
  • Cyanide products
  • Hazardous materials that the USPS has prohibited for shipping - opens in new window or tab
  • Iodine products - opens in new window or tab
  • Items containing mercury such as thermometers and the following batteries:
    • Alkaline-manganese batteries
    • Mercuric oxide button batteries (button-shaped batteries typically used in vintage camera equipment)
    • Zinc-carbon batteries
  • Items that pose a health or safety hazard as specified by government agencies, including the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF - opens in new window or tab), EPA - opens in new window or tab, FDA - opens in new window or tab, and NRC - opens in new window or tab. (We will remove listings at the request of any government agency.)
  • MRE (Meals Ready to Eat) heaters (see our military items policy for details)
  • The following explosives precursors:
    • Aluminum powder
    • Ammonium nitrate
    • Calcium ammonium nitrate
    • Calcium nitrate
    • 2.4-Dinitrophenol (DNP)
    • Hydrogen peroxide above 12% weight by weight
    • Magnesium nitrate hexahydrate
    • Magnesium powder
    • Nitric acid
    • Nitromethane
    • Potassium chlorate
    • Potassium nitrate
    • Potassium perchlorate
    • Sodium chlorate
    • Sodium nitrate
    • Sodium perchlorate
    • Sulphuric acid
 

Why does eBay have this policy?

For health and safety reasons, we don't allow selling most hazardous materials on eBay. We're also doing our part to comply with federal and state regulations and to ensure that eBay users follow all shipping guidelines from the U.S. Postal Service - opens in new window or tab and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) - opens in new window or tab.

 

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