Start collecting these items that practical preppers always keep around the house

An experienced prepper often has a list of essential supplies, such as food, water, and survival gear, that they keep stocked at home or at their bug-out location at all times. However, even the most seasoned survivalist may need reminding, especially when it comes to unusual but useful items. (h/t to

The things below are items that you can collect, recycle, or repurpose into versatile survival tools. You can even use some of them as bargaining chips.

  • Binding – Binding includes cordage like rope, string, twine, twisty-ties, or wire. Binding can be used to build weapons, repair equipment, or secure objects.
  • Dryer lint – Dryer lint may seem like a minor inconvenience when you’re doing the laundry, but when SHTF, you can use it as tinder filler when starting a fire. Store dryer lint in a small, waterproof container. You can also sprinkle some lint in areas in your garden that need extra help to prevent weed growth and erosion. Lint from natural fibers like cotton, flax, and linen may be added directly to a compost pile. Spread the dryer lint on top of the compost pile and drop even handfuls. Moisten the lint with a sprinkler and mix it with the compost using a rake or shovel.
  • Empty lighters – Empty lighters can still emit small sparks that will light fires, especially if you have a sensitive tinder like lint. Keep some dryer lint and an empty lighter in a pill bottle to make a fire kit.
  • Glass jars – Sturdy glass jars, like Mason jars, can have many uses. You can turn Mason jars into makeshift lanterns for outdoor candles or you can fill them with knickknacks like screws or other items that won’t fit in other containers.
  • Leftover lumber – If you have extra storage for leftover lumber, you can use them for various construction projects.
  • Milk or water jugs – Wash and rinse milk or water jugs with a bit of bleach and use them for storage. Keep beans, grains, rice, or seeds in jugs, which are great for storing long-term food items and gardening resources.
  • Newspapers – Aside from using them to clean windows or start fires, you can use newspapers to weave baskets. Newspaper baskets are better for storage, compared to cardboard which can attract pests.
  • Old motors and small engines – Small motors from lawnmowers or other similar equipment can still be used after SHTF. With some tinkering, you can use an engine from an electric mower to power a generator.
  • Safety pins – Keep some safety pins in a jar so you’re ready for various survival scenarios. Safety pins can be used to repair damaged clothing or as crafting tools. Store the pins in a well-sealed container to keep them from rusting. (Related: 8 Household items you can use to treat cuts and wounds at home.)
  • Spice and pill bottles – You can use these bottles to store more spices or pills, but you can also turn them into survival mini-kits. Get a bottle and put lures, several hooks, some small weights, and a length of rope in it to make a survival fishing kit.
  • Used tires – Bury used tires or fill it with soil to make an easy, weed-free planter. You can also re-purpose old tires to make DIY outdoor seats or a swing for your children.

Check your home for these handy items and resources. You never know when you’re going to need a mini-fish kit or dryer lint to start a fire.

For more articles about other useful items that you may need when SHTF, visit

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