by Christina Heiska
The U.S. Consumer Protection Agency has highly recommended that you do not purchase certain items at yard sales. Below is a partial list. This gives you a general idea of what not to buy and to get you thinking about potential yard sale purchases. Further below I have listed some of the gross things I've seen for sale at yard sales.
What NOT to Buy:
Gross Things I've Seen For Sale Lately:
- Soft bedding for babies. It is believed that plush products like soft mattresses, comforters, pillows can cause SIDS. Basically, ANYTHING baby-related should be bought with extreme caution. I've even had a reader tell me she BUYS baby things at yard sales that she knows to be recalled by manufacturers just so she can take it home and DESTROY it.
- Old baby cribs. Older ones don't have the proper spacing in the slats and/or could have cracked or peeling paint.
- Accordion-style baby gates (primarily manufactured prior to 1985).
- Hair-dryers with plain plugs. Hair-dryers manufactured prior to 1991 do not have "full immersion protection."
- Propane gas camping heaters. Heaters sold under the brand name Bernz-O-Matic and Turner have been found responsible for numerous deaths due to carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Toy chests without spring-loaded supports. The heavy lids can fall on head/neck or suffocate a kid inside.
- Kid's clothes with hood draw-strings or neck draw-strings. Many U.S. kid's clothes manufacturers have stopped making them due to the strangulation possibility, but millions of old clothes like this are still in use, and for sale at yard sales.
- Zippered bean bag chairs. Kids can crawl inside, zip themselves up and choke on the loose beans or pellets. If you buy one, make sure it's not a zippered one.
- a Fruitcake. Yes, THE same fruitcake that has been circling the world for about 20 years was sale for .75. I wonder who will get it next.
- a dirty, rusty eyelash curler
- feminine protection device for dogs in heat (at least it wasn't used)
- hamster cage, with the used wood shavings still inside
- a used ant farm - I didn't see any ants in it, but still it was gross looking.
This article was reprinted with permission of the author.
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