A homemade nail bomb was discovered at an unoccupied Sale home after police were alerted to a suspicious package by workmen on Monday.
A former resident of the home on Epsom Avenue was arrested after a glass jar filled with nails and a fuse was found, but officers said that the device was not linked with terrorism.
Bomb disposal experts carried out a controlled explosion of the device and inquiries are ongoing.
A Greater Manchester Police spokesman said: “This suspicious device was found covered in mud and seemed to have been without malice quite a few years ago.
“The house was empty at the time and a man working on the home alerted police to when the device was found.
“It may have been that the bomb was created out of curiosity.”