In talking with people about preparedness, I find that many people think that you have to spend a ton of money to get started. They forget about the common household survival items they already have in their homes that can be useful, many actually necessary, for survival.
For instance, someone was complaining about how much it cost to get a good knife, until I pointed out that he already had several that he had not considered. It took a quick raid on his wife’s kitchen to find a knife that, while not the first choice, would serve his purposes.
Here is a list of other common household survival items that you probably already own
- If you want snow camouflage, make it out of old white sheets.
- Cook stoves can be made from old tin cans and soda cans
- A bedroll can be made from blankets.
- Plastic juice and soda bottles can be used for storing water or food.
- For warmth, you can wear layers of the clothes you already own.
- Tampons/sanitary napkins for first aid dressings
- Petroleum jelly and cotton balls make good fire starters
- Any bleach that does not have additives can be used to disinfect water.
- Garbage bags can be used to build shelters
- Shower curtains can be used as tarps or a poncho
- Dental floss can be used as a string or fishing line.
- Duct tape has a million uses from first aid to repairing equipment
- Any paper can be used as fire starters. Newspaper, mail, phone books, old school papers, etc.
- Coffee filters can be used to filter the larger particles out of water
- Super glue can be used for repairs and gluing small cuts.
- Mirrors can be used for signaling
- Vinegar can be used to preserve food, disinfecting, and cleaning
- Decorative or religious candles can be used for light
- Baseball bats and other sports implements can make excellent weapons. A baseball or bicycle helmet can protect your head in an earthquake, tornado, or a riot.
- The alternator from your vehicle can be modified to make a small generator to charge batteries.
- A child’s swimming pool can be used to catch rainwater and so much more
- If you have camping gear, you can use it to equip bug out bags or keep it in the trunk of your vehicle for an impromptu bugging out
- If you have a home first aid kit, this can be used for treating injuries.
- In a power outage, all the food you have in your house can be consumed, starting with the foods that will spoil first. This will give you at least a few days of survival before you have to begin eating from your food storage.
- An old refrigerator can be made into a smoker to preserve meat
- The average water heater contains from 30 to 50 gallons of water
- Mouse and rat traps can catch you some dinner
- Nails – you can nail any unnecessary doors and window shut to increase your security. Nail wood over windows for protection against storms and intruders.
- Sewing needles and thread to repair and modify clothing or in a real emergency white threat can be used to sew up some types of wounds
- Soaps to keep yourself and your clothes clean to prevent disease
- Solar power yard light can be use to provide light at night
- Charcoal or propane barbecues can be used for cooking
- Scotchgard can be used to waterproof clothing
- Aluminum foil for improvising protection from EMP and for creating cooking vessels
- Hand tools for repairing your home or even as improvised weapons
- Yard tools for gardening
You may have to do a bit of research on how to use some of these items, but most are just common sense. These are just a few of the items that occurred to me, I am sure that many of you have more and better ideas for using common household survival items. Don’t be afraid to share them with us in the comments section.
If all you do is begin to set aside these items in emergency kits or, at least, know how you can use them in an emergency, that’s a good start.