15 Cheap Survival Items You Should Stockpile

Michael Major
By Michael Major August 7, 2020 08:31

15 Cheap Survival Items You Should Stockpile

Prepping does not have to be expensive, in fact you can find items to stockpile that are very inexpensive. This means that for a minimal investment, you can get a significant amount of survival stocks to ready yourself against any disasters or calamity that will inevitably befall our civilization.

This is my list of 15 cheap survival items that you should be stockpiling. This list is not presented in any specific order.

#1. Include Dozens of These

15 Cheap Survival Items You Should StockpileEveryone knows how great a BIC lighter is, but they do eventually run out of fuel or break.

This is why, if you are going to include one BIC in your stockpile, you should be including dozens of them.

I like to have both full sized and mini versions on hand, because the mini versions fit very nicely inside an Altoids tin. These too will make outstanding barter items, as a lot of people will not think to stock up on this essential prep.

#2. For Your Health and Sanitation

Either in bar or liquid form, having a lot of soap on hand is very important to not only your health and sanitation, but also to the health of others that you encounter.

In the past months we’ve been repeating the wash your hands mantra non-stop and should be thinking about that when stockpiling for impending disasters.

Related: DIY Wilderness Soap And Shampoo From This Plant

#3. Hand Sanitizer

Every store ran out of hand sanitizer in what seemed like days, after the COVID 19 pandemic started to ramp up. The great thing about alcohol-based hand sanitizer is that it is also very flammable.

I’ve done a fair amount of experimenting with the flammability of hand sanitizer and can say with certainty that it burns well. I like to stockpile this in bottles of various sizes, so they can be employed into different packs and kits as needed.

#4. Worth Their Weight in Gold

15 Cheap Survival Items You Should StockpileAfter a major disaster ‘AA’ and ‘AAA’ batteries are going to almost be worth their weight in gold.

They are cheap now, but as a barter item post disaster, they are going to be exceptionally valuable as most people will have electronic devices that run on batteries, such as radios and flashlights.

Don’t stop there though, ‘C’ and ‘D’ cell batteries along with 9 volt and CR2332’s are also good to have. Rechargeable batteries are also becoming cheaper as well, but require a charger and power in order to get full use out of them.

Related: How To Charge Your Phone When There Is No Electricity

#5. Items that May Disappear in the Blink of an Eye

COVID taught us that items like face masks will disappear in the blink of an eye during a pandemic. It’s not just medical masks that you should be stocking up on, N95 masks, P100 masks and simple dust masks all have a place in survival preps.

It is not just viruses that we may need to filter out, but also other airborne particles that may be in the air. After an earthquake there may be a lot of dusty debris to search through and in the event of a volcanic eruption, the ash hanging in the air must be filtered out before it arrives in our lungs.

#6. Dirt Cheap Items

Candles provide light and a small degree of warmth, but most of all they provide comfort. Candles are usually dirt cheap too, I like to pick up a hundred tea light candles at IKEA every time I shop there, but I also like to have a good stockpile of regular candles as well.

These are something that is often found at the best prices in your local dollar store.

#7. Zip Ties

15 Cheap Survival Items You Should StockpileWhether you call them cable ties, zap straps, or zip ties, we all know how useful these ties are.

From gear repair to prisoner restraint, these ties are indispensable when you need them and are generally speaking a one-shot deal. So it pays to have a lot of them.

Get them in different sizes as well.

#8. Aluminum Foil

Aluminum foil has a lot of uses beyond the usual cooking jobs we tend to use it for.

If you are a bit handy, you can use its reflective properties to make things like solar ovens. Aluminum foil can also be fashioned into containers that water can be boiled in.

#9. Chap Stick

The apocalypse is not the time to have chapped lips. It’s not just from a beauty stand point either, badly chapped lips can become cracked and begin to bleed. In a survival situation any wound holds the potential for infection.

Also, Chap Stick is a petroleum-based substance, so it can also be used in conjunction with cotton balls as a fire starter. You can also use it on metal to prevent rust, and on minor wounds to help with bleeding.

Related: 20 Survival Uses For Chapstick

#10. A Very Versatile Item

15 Cheap Survival Items You Should StockpileIt doesn’t matter if the zombies arrive and are roaming the streets, we still need to dispose of our trash.

That’s not all though, trash bags have a wide variety of uses, from water collection to improvised rain gear, the simple trash bag is cheap and has a lot of versatility.

#11. Bandanas

Cotton bandanas have so many uses that an entire article could be written on them alone. From head and face coverings to water filters, they are versatile enough that it is worth having a lot of them on hand.

It is important to only buy cotton bandanas, so they can also be used as char cloth.

Related: Building The Three Bucket Bio-Water-Filter

#12. Great to Stock Up On

15 Cheap Survival Items You Should StockpileUsually made from highly reflective Mylar, emergency blankets reflect the body’s heat back on itself, helping to reduce heat loss due to convection.

These are great to stock up on because they can be considered to be basically a one-time use item.

The cheaper blankets that you find at the dollar store are pretty much impossible to re-fold and are best to be repurposed or disposed of after being used. There are emergency blankets that are more heavy duty that can be reused, but they do cost a few dollars more, and they have the advantage of lasting a lot longer than the dollar store variety.

#13. Best to Have Too Much of These

This includes everything from medication to abdominal dressings. First Aid supplies are a consumable item that, when you end up in a real life or death situation, are going to be consumed rapidly.

Gauze pads are one item that you can not ever have too much of, as well as abdominal dressings. Even the simple band aid is important to stock up on, but also remember to get some antibiotic ointment as well.

First Aid supplies are one thing that you should stock up on that will not break the bank, but will be something you should be willing to risk having too much of rather than not enough.

#14. Sanitizing Wipes

Another COVID-19 inspired item, these wipes flew off the shelves during the pandemic and now, as supply chains catch up and things return to somewhat normal, they are for sale again.

These sanitizing wipes can be either alcohol based, or used in combination with a disinfectant. They are almost indispensable for quickly wiping down surfaces and rendering them free of germs.

Related: Toilet Paper Pills – The Best Invention You Didn’t Know Existed

#15. An Item with Multiple Uses

15 Cheap Survival Items You Should StockpilePonchos are cheap, simple, versatile, and effective at being rain gear.

They are also often very inexpensive at the local dollar store, hardware store, Walmart etc.

Not only do they keep you dry from the rain, but they have plenty of other uses too.

Ponchos can be used to collect water, make shelter, make a stretcher, act as a body bag, and many other uses that are limited only by imagination.

What are other cheap survival items you would like to add to this list? I’d love to know your thoughts in the comments below.

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Michael Major
By Michael Major August 7, 2020 08:31
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51 Comments

  1. Bobbie August 7, 14:28

    carabiners, steel wool (rodent deterrent, fire starter with a battery….), large plastic bag for shelter opens with a snap of the wrist , books about foraging, water,

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  2. Yellowjacket August 7, 14:43

    Don’t forget 550 cord.

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    • Phil August 13, 13:20

      bleach

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      • Cavalryman August 13, 14:07

        Stockpiling bleach is a BAD IDEA! If you stockpile bleach you will have a false sense of security. Bleach goes bad. DON’T STOCK PILE BLEACH. I did and I assure you that after 10 years it becomes something the consistency of salt water. Actually, after about 4 or 5 years it’s almost useless. I use a bleach solution to kill weeds around my place and anything older than about 5 years does nothing more than water them and helps them grow. You can tell the bleach is no longer any good when you open the bottle and it doesn’t small like bleach. Most manufactures say that their bleach is good for about 6 months. That means that if you have bleach with a 6% chlorine solution that the percentage will slowly degrade to zero starting at about 6 months.
        What I suggest is that you keep the empty bleach bottles, let them dry out and fill them with the appropriate amount of dry chemical Calcium Hypochlorite. Do your research on how much to put in each container relative to the size of the container, the percentage of Chlorine solution you want, and the purity of the chemical you have. This is a highly corrosive chemical so follow the manufactures instructions on storage.
        Dry Calcium Hypochlorite reportedly has a 10-year life span but like all dry chemicals I suspect it will last longer.
        Just a suggestion from someone who has learned the hard way.

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  3. Hal August 7, 15:34

    I have to re-read this list. Surely I somehow overlooked duct tape!!😉

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  4. Prepper In Training August 7, 15:36

    Zip-lock sandwich bags, paracord, a few cheap knives. Along with Bobbie’s advice for water, have aquatabs available.

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  5. Rick Fortune August 7, 16:00

    A stock of batteries is wise, but be wise when you store them. Make sure they don’t complete an unwanted circuit by contacting both poles to a conductor. This is a fire hazard-especially with 9v batteries! And as stated before-it’s 2020, there is NO need for candles anymore! Most people don’t have the safety instinct to use open flam anymore!

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    • left coast chuck August 7, 18:01

      Leave the batteries in the original package until ready to use. If you have too few batteries to leave in the original bulk pack (think Costco), then wrap them in plastic film. If you save bubble pack, that makes an ideal plastic to wrap batteries. The best part is you have already paid for it, so it doesn’t cost you any more money as using new saran wrap would. A lot of my batteries are the ones that Harbor Freight was giving away for so long. It takes three AAA batteries, so I wrap them in packs of three, roll one completely up, roll the next one completely up on the same roll and finish with the third. By rolling the battery completely up in the plastic film you avoid all inadvertent contact which might conceivably cause a short.

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    • BebeBeth August 7, 18:41

      In a SHTF scenario, most people’s “safety instinct” will kick in – somewhat. And candles hold a multitude of purposes. Granted, we have “better” things now, but a stock of candles is still good. Here in North Dakota, we still keep them for emergencies even though batteries, etc are available. If nothing else, they can provide heat – albeit very little – and a way to heat an open can of beans, if necessary. All I’m saying is, don’t discount them too quickly.

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      • Hotrod August 7, 20:44

        We have plenty of candles, but also have quite a few kerosene lamps ( long burn time and put off heat ). Our power goes out a lot anymore so we have to be ready.
        Long term water filtration must be planned for, like a Sawyer mini filter ( filters up to 100000 gallons of water ), or a Burkey water filter.

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        • Lonnie G August 13, 20:10

          My filter is just as good as a Berkey, but cost $300 less.

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        • Steve August 16, 04:29

          A Sawyer filter claims to filter 100,000 gallons of water, but the water source needs to be nearly perfect, like a municipal water supply. And it only filters bacteria and giardia, not any chemicals or heavy metals that can be found in farming areas. If the water is “dirty” water like from a lake or slow moving stream, don’t expect to filter nearly the claimed 100,000 gallons. And you need to back flush often. For the best water “filtration”, you need a purifier that removes nearly anything from the water source. Expect to be able to purify maybe a couple thousand gallons of water with a purifier versus a water “filter” that won’t remove everything from the source and claims thousands of gallons of filtered can be produced. That’s why purifiers and their cartridges are more expensive and last for fewer gallons and a shorter period than just a filter. You must know the water sources you may be using to purchase the water filter vs. a water purifier.

          Reply to this comment
    • City Chick August 8, 02:34

      I beg to differ! Candles are safe. It’s the person who does not know how to use them safely who isn’t! Candles are also multi purpose items. For example, you can use them to wax shovels, sleds, and dresser drawers. Waxed material provides some waterproofing and of course you can make your own wax paper to wrap leftover food up for freshness!.

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  6. Buck August 7, 18:10

    Dental Floss is an excelled rot proof thread as an alternative use. Foraging poses high potential fibrous materials being eaten which in turn get stuck between your teeth, what if you don’t have floss….? Also, I did not see a sewing awl with assortment of needles stored in handle of most + waxed thread. this tool can mend torn tarps, clothing, even shoes + sew animal skins together for shelter or clothing needs.

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    • Peg leg pete August 9, 00:07

      What is a sewing awl?

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      • left coast chuck August 9, 03:52

        If you sew heavy leather, it is almost impossible to push a needle with thread in the eye through the leather. A sewing awl looks like an ice pick with a short blade on it. It has a heavy rounded handle somewhat like a shorty screwdriver, but with a more rounded palm. You make a hole in the leather with the leather awl and then it is easy to push the needle and thread through the pre-made hole.

        You can buy awls with different diameter blades on them depending upon what thickness of thread you are using.

        Sailmakers use them for sewing heavy canvas used in sails. They also use an instrument called a sailmaker’s palm which is a demi-glove with a heavy leather guard in the palm to use when forcing an awl through several thicknesses of canvas.

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      • Jim August 9, 04:37

        A sewing awl is tool with a heavy duty needle on one end a hollow handle on the other. The hollow holds the spool of heavy thread. You use the awl by pushing the needle through the materials to be sewn together and you use regular procedures to see. They are still available and have instructions. Sporting goods and hardware stores should have them.

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        • Buck August 9, 04:45

          Sewing awls, thread, and needles for them all available from multiple sources on Ebay. I typically default to the bent “L” type needle as it seems to be easier to keep my stitch line straight and pushes through canvas and leather in a more controlled manner. Leather is a decision in method used. Multiple step method ends up cleaner looking as you pre punch the holes in the leather prior to stitching. Overall, the waxed thread is better than fishing line because you don’t have to have a fancy knot to finish the job and count on it to stay tied, plus it does not rot or brittle up on you.

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          • left coast chuck August 9, 17:15

            Buck: I agree with your assessment of waxed thread being better than fishing line for sewing leather. I use fishing line for sewing cloth and if push comes to shove, for sewing flesh. But heavy duty waxed thread is the only way to go with leather. The wax makes pulling the thread through the leather easier to.

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    • ST August 24, 22:59

      https://www.sailrite.com/All-Tools/Popular-Tool-Kits

      I’ve never used this site. I just post the link to give folks an idea of what these things look like. I had some how-to articles linked, but lost them.

      Reply to this comment
  7. left coast chuck August 7, 18:34

    If you save those mylar ponchos that you can never fold back up to the same size as when you bought them, you can use them to catch condensation overnight. Not very much unless there was a high dew point, but certainly if you wake up with a dry mouth because you are starting to get dehydrated, it will seem like the finest vintage French champagne. If it happens to rain, they can catch rainwater, but not too much or they will rip and you will cry.

    So if I were really in a pinch like Crazy Kim had just gone completely bonkers and I was living out of my get home bag, I wouldn’t throw the piece of mylar away as soon as I had used it.

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  8. efzapp August 7, 19:54

    No one ever mentions Vick’s Vapor Rub. It has so many uses. For colds and stuffy noses. Sore muscles. Repels mosquitoes and other insects. Also, stops itching from insect bites. Can be used to help start a fire since it is petroleum bases. I know there are many other uses. I always have a few bottles. Just saying.

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  9. Botaboom August 7, 21:28

    Candles are not just to power your toys, include candles and wax paper and you have a good fire starter. You shave the candle wax on the wax paper and roll it like a cigar. then light the ends to start a fire. We do this all the time camping, you can also use them as a heat source in worst case when you can not build a fire due to predators. Not the four legged kind!

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  10. Clergylady August 7, 22:28

    I bought the cheap Mylar “blankets” in a set of 50. Made them cheap. In a power off situation I hung one on a wall to reflect light from lamps. Reall lit up the room. They of course reflect body heat back on you or reflect heat off of you. Depends on the side toward to you. My solar oven is lined with shinny aluminium foil but the “wings” put to the sides are Mylar blanket cut and glued on. Relects well. Cheap enough to replace if sun damaged.
    I keep batteries and a solar charger for multiple sizes, old oil lamps and candles. Use any or all at times.
    A simple water evaporation water collector is a sheet of plastic or Mylar over a shallow pit. Lay a small smooth rock in the center of the sheet. Direcently below the rock place a cup or small pot in the pit. It will catch the collected condesention. How much you collect will depend on humidity and temperature.
    Trash bags of leaves make a descent matress or bean bag type seat. A Mylar blanket under a tarp is nice to reflect heat from a campfire onto your bed and makes your camp brighter without lamps.
    I keep a variety of fire starting methods and lint firestarters in 1/3 cut toilet paper rolls. A bit of Vaseline gets them going quickly. I store them in zip lock bags.
    I have dental floss for dental uses, as small cordage, with suture kits for further use of the suture needles, with sewing kit for strong mending repairs and with a sewing awl that can sew leather or repair my boots. I also use dental floss for fetching arrows, and attaching arrow heads. 20-30 strands of floss can be braided tightly into a descent bow string.
    I like articles that make you thinks or create good discussions.

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    • IvyMike August 8, 01:17

      Dang Clerylady, I can just see you sitting around a small fire under a tarp with a mylar sheet reflecting the heat and light onto your back and shoulders on a chilly drizzly night while you fletch arrows with dental floss. The great thing is we don’t have to wait for the end of the world but can do all this great stuff right now. Numbers 6:24-26.

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    • left coast chuck August 8, 01:37

      I like fishing line for sewing purposes, including wounds. In my opinion it cleans up easier with IPA than dental floss, so when you put that stitch in to close the bad glass cut, the stitch won’t be introducing bacteria into the wound.

      In the heavier weights, it also works good as cordage. A word of caution though, despite greenies dire warnings that fishing line lasts 500 years, I only wish that were true. Outdoors it only has a year or two of in-service life before it starts to disintegrate. That length of time may vary depending upon how far north you are, but in SoCal, count on two years max. It may look like it is solid but after two summers, while it is still in place it is brittle and disintegrates into tiny pieces when touched.

      Ten pound test line is very nice for fine sewing but is really too fine for my clumsy fingers to work satisfactorily. And it is not like I am doing the fine stitching that my wife does. 15# test and up to 30# test works fine. Over that is too stiff to be much good for anything other than cordage in my opinion. Perhaps sewing heavy leather but I haven’t done much of that and so my opinion is divided.

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  11. Terry August 7, 23:02

    Firewood is pretty cheap if you’re not able to cut. Also a magnifying glass is a great backup if the day is sunny.

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  12. Miss Kitty August 8, 00:33

    I would add dollar store OTC medications and first aid stuff in general. Many of these are made in China and India and if there’s another round of covid or a bad depression the supply chain will be broken. I’ve used these items and they work fine…in many cases it’s the same stuff that you will pay full price for in the drugstore under different labeling. If nothing else, you can use them for barter or donate them to a charity if they are close to expiration and you don’t need them.

    Foil can also be used for a diy solar oven or for heating food on an open fire.

    Any food items are going to be useful, and I would also suggest coffee filters. Those can be used for a lot of things, including making cheese and yoghurt or rendering fat.

    Storage containers of all sorts are good too.

    Drinking alcohol can be used for preserving some foods, disinfectant, and barter.

    Chocolate, and stuff for making desserts. If a friend has a birthday post shtf, it will be a huge morale boost to everyone if you’re able to make them a cake. Also barterable.

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    • left coast chuck August 8, 01:50

      The problem I have with drugs made offshore is not that the necessary ingredients aren’t in the pill or liquid, but what else that shouldn’t be there is actually there. Quality assurance is sketchy in third world countries and China and India, in my opinion are still third world countries.

      I read an expose’ of quality control in China and according to the Chinese lady who claimed she actually spent time in factories there as a worker, it is non-existent. While the Chinese have “quality control engineers” many of those folks have purchased their diploma and background searches are non-existent. Then there is always the problem of the bribe. China operates on the bribe. Even the goobermint has recognized the problem. They are attempting to address the problem because they recognize as we are supposed to have recognized that corruption, especially corruption in goobermint undermines everything worthwhile that people are trying to accomplish and makes the goobermint look incompetent and uncaring.

      When I was on Taiwan I was advised by folks I had met that the goobinator of Taiwan was paid a ridiculous sum of money for a very complicated job. It was expected that he would collect a bribe for performing every ministerial act within the scope of his office. That was a left over that the old Kuomintang government brought over from China. I think Taiwan may have made big headway in eliminating the officially sanctioned corruption. It is now unofficially sanctioned. It is hard to break a thousand year old habit.

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  13. Karen August 8, 01:02

    a good fire starter is pine-cones I have a lot falling from my tree on a sunny day lay them on driveway to dry (so no wetness to mildew) then I throw in a plastic container or trashcan

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  14. IvyMike August 8, 01:20

    I carry the little Bic lighters but my experience with them is that they are not reliable when it’s really cold and you really need a fire.

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    • left coast chuck August 8, 01:54

      Mike: Don’t ditch the lighters even if they don’t light. If they still have fuel in them, you can punch a hole in the bottom of the lighter to extract the fuel to start a fire.

      If the wheel still throws sparks you can use the fuel that you extracted from the body of the lighter on some starter and use the sparks from the wheel to ignite that. That will get you at least one more fire from the defunct lighter.

      If the wheel is throwing enough spark, you can always use it in lieu of matches to start fires.

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      • IvyMike August 8, 23:49

        I have a silly fear that if I punch a hole in the bottom of one it will go off in my hand like a baby grenade. I think the problem is water in the fuel freezing up in the nozzle. This has only happened to me at home because I like to cook outdoors even in the freezing cold, so I just go out to the truck and get my propane torch. In fact, a little plumbing torch with a bottle of MAPP gas is probably a pretty good cheap survival item you should stockpile.

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  15. OldJarhead August 8, 01:33

    If you want to really see how tough it can be, try primitive camping. This is a good way to try your prep ideas beforehand and you can make a list of things you need afterwards.

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  16. City Chick August 8, 02:17

    Don’t shop much at IKEA, but they do have good candles! In addition to tea lights, they have great tapers. I usually pick up a box or two of 50 chandelier candles. No drips. No smoke. Slow burning. Bright light. When friends or folks in the family turn 50, I’ll wrap one up as a gift! Had an aunt that turned 100! She got two boxes! Always a welcomed surprise!

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    • JayJay August 9, 17:08

      Dollar Tree has prayer candles –I have a box full.
      I tested one–about 100 hours is what it burned.
      For a dollar?? that’s pretty good…but a way to light them is another issue.

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      • Miss Kitty August 10, 04:55

        Get a couple of boxes of the extra long fireplace matches. Those should be long enough to light the candles even if they are almost burnt out. You can also use the stick part to light items from an already burning candle or a gas burner on a stove. Watch the burnt end falling off as it burns down. It might still have a live ember in it or be hot enough on its own to burn bare skin.

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        • left coast chuck August 18, 16:50

          Before long matches were in the marketplace, I used to use a twist of newspaper to light the pilot light on my furnace each year. Take a quarter sheet of newprint and twist it tight. Light one end with a match. At the time I started I didn’t know about burning Vasoline or vegetable oil and so used the twisted paper dry. Now if I were doing the same, I would soak the paper in old vegetable oil and then light it.

          Use that technique for any fire starting you want to do that is at some distance. You can make a newspaper lighter longer if necessary. A half sheet was adequate for lighting the furnace pilot light.

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  17. City Chick August 8, 02:23

    Heads up! Clorox announced that they will not have their wipes back on the shelf till next spring. Apparently the material that they use to make the wipe itself is the same material used to make disposable hospital gowns and that material is not available to them at this time. I would imagine that the shortage may also effect the production of similar products.

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    • efzapp August 8, 11:11

      Luckily, Clorox wipes are just a convenience not a necessity. We can always go back to the bucket and rag method. I do have a few containers still in my preps but I’m holding on to them right now. What my mom really wants is some Lysol spray (Linen scent). She uses it on everything. I also have 4 cans but I’m not letting her know because she won’t be happy until she gets them. What she doesn’t know won’t hurt me.

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      • left coast chuck August 8, 17:56

        A paper towel soaked in bleach disinfectant solution is a cheaper work-around for a Clorox wipe. When done disinfecting a surface it can be disposed of. If it is not worn out, it can be dried and reused until the paper towel is no longer usable. Soaked in a bleach disinfectant solution means that there won’t be bacteria/viruses on it when it finally dries. They will have been killed and it will be ok to use again.

        In an EOTW situation we won’t have the luxury of using a new paper towel ever time we wipe up spilled coffee — which I just did — or spilled water. We will need to reuse and use up, repair, make do. Better get in practice now than wait until it’s absolutely, positively necessary and not have develop the necessary mindset.

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  18. Cavalryman August 8, 04:29

    When it comes to batteries, I have switched most of mine out with rechargeable ones. In the past, I’ve purchased the ones advertised to have a ten-year life span but they are about half way there. Also, once you become dependent on batteries on a nightly basis, you will go through them much faster than you thought. A good rechargeable AA, AAA, or 9V, the most common, should have a life span of about 1000 recharges and 1500mAh (Milliamp Hour) rating or higher. Sure, you could go through the hassle of wiring several together to make the correct voltage, but even then you’ll run out of power well before the rechargeable ones run out of recharge capability.
    Take a good look at you battery needs then multiply that by 1000. If you were to store that number of batteries, most would go bad before you needed them.
    I have two solar powered battery charges and two wall charges. A PV solar system to accommodate the wall chargers and a small portable PV solar configuration as a back up to that.
    I now only replace the batteries in my smoke detectors, CO detectors, remote controls, flashlights, night vision, range finder, etc. with rechargeable batteries. Sure the remote controls may not be useful in some TEOTWAWKI scenarios but the batteries may still be good for other devices. When I purchase items like night scopes, I only look for the ones that take AA or AAA batteries. Devices that use the button style 2016, 2032, 357/303 etc. will be hard pressed to get replacement batteries in a long term survival situation. You can get rechargeable button style batteries and rechargers on line but I don’t want to make the investment at this time.
    Another source of the rechargeable batteries are those cheap LED walk lights. They usually have AA or AAA batterie(s) in them. Sure they have a low mAh rating and would need charged probably twice a day but most of us have them around our house.
    Just remember, two is one and one is none when it comes to survival items.

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    • MrEman August 16, 00:32

      i purchased several solar path lights, the kind that have a AA or AAA rechargable batteries in them. they light up my yard real nice at night and when the power goes out I just bring them inside for light or to use the batteries in my walkie talky etc. I keep some extra rechargable batteries also.
      I also placed empty plastic coffee cans where I worked labeled dead battery recycle. I tested all the batteries collected and disposed of the bad ones and kept the good ones. I now have a stash of hundreds of good littlie used batteries sorted by size.

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  19. Chaya August 8, 11:03

    Bottle openers, can openers (manual), buttons (clothing repair and wound repair), shoe laces, fishing hooks, and polo leg wraps for horses (protects injured limbs human and animal ) are all inexpensive items we keep on hand in quantity. Tick keys too.

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    • Sophie August 8, 21:02

      I do not buy buttons. Before throwing out any clothing, cut off the buttons. Use a piece of thread to hold the buttons together and throw them in your button jar. Don’t forget to re-purpose the clothing into rags or strips of material for braided rugs or square pieces of material for quilts.

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  20. MrEman August 16, 00:36

    I like FREE stuff. We collected dryer lint in plastic jars. lightly oiled to use as fire starter material. The lint, used oil and empty peanut butter jar are all free.

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  21. City Chick September 19, 13:41

    My rule of thumb is anything that you need and use on a regular basis that doesn’t go bad. Why not have a short supply on hand? It is foolish in my opinion to do otherwise.

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