Now that the weather is finally warming up, and we're all starting our spring cleaning, it means it's almost time for Garage Sale Season in Michigan. Whether you're trying to get rid of some stuff without adding to the landfill, or willing to hunt for a great deal on a second hand item, they're the perfect way to connect another man's trash to one man's treasure.

And while it may be tempting to get a few things at a great price, experts warn that there are 9 items you should specifically leave on that folding card table. They say that you should avoid buying these things at a discount for your own health and safety.

Bike Helmets

Credit: Canva
Credit: Canva

While it might seem like a great idea to recycle a bike helmet, but it may be safer to just go without. Helmets are constantly going through changes, so the one you pick up may not be up to the current standards. There's also a chance it could be damaged from an accident, making them even more unsafe.

Not to mention the potential of lice? Just stick to new for this item.

Car Seats

Cybex For Scuderia Ferrari Launch Party By Tot Living for Haute Living
Getty Images for Haute Living

There's a reason you can't donate or buy them from stores like Goodwill. Car seats have a plethora of problems that keep them from being safe for resale. One reason is the fact that car seats come with an expiration date because over time, general wear and tear and temperature degradation can cause them to become unsafe.

Not only that, just like bike helmets, they also could have damage that isn't visible from an accident, so the risk isn't worth the savings.


Brazil Faces New Health Epidemic As Mosquito-Borne Zika Virus Spreads Rapidly
Getty Images

Like car seats, this one prioritizes safety. Baby product safety standards evolve over time, and sellers who no longer have young children might not be aware of these changes. For instance, drop-side cribs were banned in the United States in 2011 due to numerous injuries and fatalities. Although retailers cannot sell these cribs anymore, they may still appear at neighborhood garage sales.

Read More: Grand Rapids Adding New Social District in Popular SE Neighborhood

Even if a crib has fixed sides, its age and condition may be uncertain, potentially compromising its safety and functionality. Additionally, it can be challenging to identify the specific type of crib and determine if it has been subject to any recalls. So just skip out on these even if you can snag a sweet deal.



Makeup is expensive, so it could be tempting to save the planet and snag up some leftovers from a neighbor- but this is a terrible idea.

Not only is opened makeup subject to germs and infections from outside exposure, it's also likely expired. Even if makeup is sealed, it could still have water damage or germs from improper storage.


Side view of chubby man looking broken while lying on top of laptop.

Laptops are expensive but you're very unlikely to get a good deal if you spot one at a yard sale. Experts say not only are they likely extremely out of date, they may also have a battery that is near it's lifecycle or be full of spyware. So, make sure you go to a reputable reseller if you want to purchase a laptop second hand.


Demand For Mattresses Falls After Strong Sales During The Pandemic
Getty Images

There are a million reasons why you should never buy a mattress used, and most of them are called bedbugs. Not only can that mattress be full of them, it could also be full of tons of dirt, grime and dead skin that you don't want to take home with you. Since it's nearly impossible to clean mattresses entirely, you may just want to skip the used one.

Non-Stick Pots & Pans

What's wrong with re-using some pans if they're clean? A lot, actually. They're likely to be "expired", which means that the non-stick coating is either worn or missing over years of use. So, not only will your food STILL stick to the pan, you may accidentally consume some harmful chemicals if you're not careful.

Running Shoes

Just for Feet
MarkBuckawicki // Wikimedia Commons

Not to mention they're smelly, there are also other reasons why you shouldn't take someone's old running shoes home from the yard sale. If those shoes have been well loved, they may not be great for your feet anymore. The average pair of running shoes has a life of 300-500 miles, and since they don't come with an odometer there is no real way to know if they still have lots of miles or none at all left in them.

Video Games

Nintendo 64
robtek // Shutterstock

While this one isn't as unsafe as the others, there are still a few risks related to buying a used video game. Not only will it possibly be still have someone else's save data, there's also a chance you get the game home and it just plain doesn't work at all.

The plus to buying video games used at a store is that they'll likely replace or refund your broken game. Meanwhile, at the garage sale, you're just stuck with a dud if you get home and can't play that game.

So, while it may be tempting to grab some of these items at a steal, save yourself the headache. And, happy hunting this spring and summer as yard sale season kicks off. Here's hoping all of your finds are wins instead of duds.

Check Out 8 of Michigan's Weirdest Laws

Yes, these laws are actually on the books in Michigan, make sure you don't break them.

Gallery Credit: Laura Hardy

More From Mix 95.7