2 min article

Product safety policy

Products that pose a health or safety hazard aren't allowed.

To ensure the safety and well-being of our members, eBay does not allow listings for items that are banned, recalled, or dangerous to a buyer.

What is the policy?

The following types of items are not allowed:

  • Products recalled by a manufacturer or government agency
  • Products where the sale of the product is prohibited by law or regulation
  • Products that pose a health or safety hazard as specified by any government agency
  • Products that don't comply with product safety laws. This includes but is not limited to the Machinery Directive (2006/42/EC), the Electrical Equipment (safety) Regulations 2016, the Plugs and Sockets etc. (Safety) Regulations 1994 and the Cosmetic Directive 1223/2009
  • Lighters which breach EU or International regulations, including:
    • Giant Lighters
    • Child appealing or novelty lighters. For a definition of novelty lighters please see Additional Information below

Current information about recalled products and products that pose health or safety hazards can be found on the following websites:

  • EU Product Safety Authorities
  • EU Commission (Safety gate/Rapex)
  • UK Office of Product Safety & Standards (OPSS)
  • Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
  • US Consumer Product and Safety Commission (CPSC)
  • US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
  • Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC)

Please review and follow all applicable laws and regulations for the countries where you dispatch. To protect buyers and sellers, we will remove any item that is reported to us as recalled or otherwise unsafe from any of the regulatory authorities worldwide.

Certain items can be listed only if they follow specific regulations. The following types of items must comply with these safety standards:

  • Toy magnets with small pieces that can be swallowed or that may appeal to children are not allowed. Small magnets must be listed only as fasteners and listed in the Business & Industrial > Fasteners & Hardware > Magnets category
  • Laser pointers must have an output power 1 milliwatts (mW) or less and be class 1M, 1C, 2/II, 2M/IIM. Military, tactical, or “high powered” lasers are not allowed. For further information on laser safety, please visit the Public Health England website
  • Smoke or carbon monoxide detectors must be from one of the approved brands. Unbranded and unsafe brands of smoke or carbon monoxide detectors are not allowed
  • 18650 batteries cannot be listed individually, as they are not intended for sale to consumers and can be potentially hazardous to consumers when handled, transported, stored or charged. 18650 batteries must be pre-installed
  • Products where the button battery is easily accessible are considered unsafe. Button batteries are easily swallowed and can cause health issues or death. Please review the PAS 7055 outlining the safety requirements for button and coin batteries to ensure your products meet the safety standards before listing on eBay. For more information on button batteries, please visit the OPSS Guidance on Child Safety and the Button Battery Safety Campaign
  • Products that require a CE Mark/UK CA Mark need to bear a CE/UK CA Mark, and the seller needs to have the required documentation available upon request
  • Permitted lighters may be listed only if they are equipped with a child-resistant mechanism
  • Business sellers are permitted to sell new hoverboards or self-balancing scooters that comply with applicable regulatory requirements and safety standards. Sellers need to include a clearly legible scan of the CE certificate that proves that the listed hoverboard complies with the Machinery Directive (2006/42/EC) in the item description
  • Eligible sellers can list cots. All cots must meet UK safety standards. Sellers must state in the listing that the cot meets these standards. Cot bumpers and used cots are not allowed
  • Eligible sellers can list child car safety seats. All car seats must meet applicable safety standards. Sellers must state in the item description that the child restraint system is approved according to UN Regulation No. 44 or UN Regulation No. 129. Used car seats are not allowed. See UNECE's Child Restraint Systems for more information
  • Eligible sellers can list new bicycle helmets. Used bicycle helmets are not allowed
  • E-bikes must have a maximum motor power of 250W and a maximum speed of 25 km/h. Please see the rules for e-bikes - opens in new window or tab for more information.
  • If the product you are selling includes an adaptor, please ensure that the adaptor is permanently affixed and cannot be removed without the use of tools. Please familiarise yourself with the plugs and sockets regulations - opens in new window or tab

Additional information

Before you list an item, take a few minutes to check the manufacturer's website to get information on recalled items. Sellers may also consult the UK Trading Standards Office - opens in new window or tab, the Office for Product Safety and Standards - opens in new window or tab, or National Consumer Agency - opens in new window or tab for Republic of Ireland members. You can also visit the Citizens Advice - opens in new window or tab.

In addition, visit the BIS Business Companion - opens in new window or tab website for advice.

Buyers should also keep up-to-date about item recalls, especially for the kinds of items they often buy.

We recommend that sellers advise customers to register their gas or electrical appliances with the manufacturer so they can be informed of any important product safety updates.

If you sell domestic appliances such as washing machines, fridges or ovens, your UK customers can easily register these at the Register my appliance portal. For more information, visit the Association of Manufacturers of Domestic Appliances website - opens in new window or tab.

For more information about the ban of novelty lighters in the EU, visit: http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/archive/cons_safe/prod_safe/gpsd/lighters/guidelines.pdf - opens in new window or tab

Novelty lighters are defined as: "A flame-producing product commonly used by consumers to ignite cigarettes, cigars and pipes, including any holder which can be incorporated later or any attachment which can be fixed later, that resembles by any means to another object commonly recognised as appealing to or intended for use by children younger than 51 months, or has entertaining audio effects or animated effects. A novelty lighter can operate on any fuel, including butane or liquid fuel. This includes, but is not limited to, lighters or holders that are clearly intended to hold lighters, the shape of which resembles cartoon characters, toys, guns, watches, telephones, musical instruments, vehicles, human body or parts of the human body, animals, food or beverages, or that play musical notes, or have flashing lights or moving objects or other entertaining features. This excludes lighters that are printed or decorated with logos, labels, decals, artwork or heat shrinkable sleeves."

Activity on eBay is required to follow this policy, the eBay User Agreement and all applicable laws, as well as respect the rights of third parties. If it doesn’t, eBay may take action consistent with applicable laws and the eBay User Agreement, and may even be legally required to do so. Such actions may include, as an example only: Removing the listing or other content, issuing a warning, restricting activity or account suspension.

Why does eBay have this policy?

This policy helps sellers follow important government regulations.

Manufacturers or retailers can inform eBay about product safety recalls by sending an email to recalls@ebay.com and including specific information about the recalled product.


Helpful links

Visit Seller Help - opens in new window or tab to find details of any policy issues with your account or listings, and get the information you need to quickly resolve them.

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