Before you start driving around Illinois or the next month with a trunk full of donations, find out if Goodwill will even accept them.

Charitable Donations in the Trunk of Your Car

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Here's a fun game to play. If you currently have boxes or bins of things you wish to donate to Goodwill in the trunk of your car, answer this.

How long have they been traveling with you?

Just because I finally had an entire free Saturday to go through our things that would mean something more to another family does not mean I will be vigilant in getting them to Goodwill.

I am fairly confident that everything in my trunk when finally dropped off, will not be refused by Goodwill.

Goodwill Donation Policy

Last year, Goodwill received over 19 million pounds of donated goods from people like you and me. These items became the ‘recycled’ merchandise they sell at their stores. About 85% of the revenue generated flowed back to the community to help people with disabilities and other barriers to employment.

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Donation Items Goodwill Accepts

  • New and gently used clothing and linens
  • Shoes, boots, skates, slippers
  • Computers and all computer equipment
  • Cell phones
  • Household items, dishes, glassware, kitchen utensils, lamps, and small appliances
  • Toys, games, and sporting goods
  • Books, CDs, videos, DVDs, and computer software
  • Jewelry, purses, and belts
  • All electronics including VCRs, DVD & blue ray players, and stereos
  • Cars, trucks, motorcycles, and boats

Hopefully, none of the items on the next list are in your trunk, or you'll now need to lighten your trunk or trailer load a little. A few of these things are too big to fit in your trunk anyway.

Goodwill Drive Thru Sign

Donation Items Goodwill Does Not Accept

  • Tires and car batteries
  • Chemicals of any kind including paint, gasoline, antifreeze, pesticides, cleaning supplies, and oil
  • Propane tanks
  • Equipment containing oils and gasoline
  • Mattresses, box springs, waterbeds, sleeper sofas
  • Sofas over 6 feet in length, entertainment centers
  • Pianos, organs
  • Stained, soiled, or damaged furniture
  • Incomplete or damaged furniture
  • Large desks, metal desks
  • TVs
  • Encyclopedias
  • Building materials including carpeting
  • Weapons or ammunition
  • Large appliances including refrigerators, washing machines, air conditioners, dishwashers
  • Large exercise equipment including treadmills, stair masters, ellipticals
  • Baby items including cribs, strollers, and car seats (recalls)
  • Anything that requires more than 2 people to move safely

Goodwill also accepts boats and vehicles in all conditions. Click HERE. They also accept computer and computer equipment donations. You can get more information on those donations HERE.

Goodwill of Northern Illinois

For all things, Goodwill of Northern Illinois, visit

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Gallery Credit: Facebook

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