The world is in a more unsettled state than ever. Political upheavals and natural disasters are all around, and it’s hard to know what the next day will bring. So, it’s not surprising that as many as 68 million Americans have recently purchased SHTF prepping gear or otherwise begun readying their home for emergency survival situations. Having supplies and gear ready to go can make all the difference in an emergency scenario, and these folks are making sure they won’t be caught unprepared.
Maybe you’ve started to work on your home’s disaster readiness, and maybe you’ve got some supplies stashed away. Or even an extensive survival kit. But what key gadgets and gear might you be missing that could save your life (or your family’s) in an emergency? There are many must-haves that are often overlooked but can be game-changers in some of life’s scariest situations.
Your Essential SHTF Prepping List
1. Fire Safety Gear
If you’re hunkered down in a survival scenario, even a small fire in your home can quickly turn devastating. Any well-prepared survival kit needs to include supplies to help contain and extinguish a fire before it gets worse. As well as to help you escape a larger house fire. This includes:
These can be especially important if you live in a high-rise, where a fire can be much harder to escape and much more deadly. Keep your fire gear close to the kitchen since that’s where fires most often start. But not so close that it will be inaccessible in a fire.
2. Sewing Supplies
In a prolonged emergency situation, you may need to repair clothes on the fly. It’s also important to make sure one or more people in your household actually know how to sew. It’s worth spending some time watching YouTube tutorials or learning from an experienced friend. Even if you never need it in an emergency, the ability to repair small rips and tears can help save a beloved piece of clothing. Make sure your sewing kit also includes materials to repair shoes!
3. Sand Bags
These are something few folks think about until they really need them. But they can be a true necessity for protecting your home from water damage during a flood. What’s more, they’re the kind of item that everyone remembers that they need at the same time. So by the time you get to the store, there may be none left. Also, make sure that you know the proper techniques for sandbag use so that you can get the most out of them.
Dehydrated food isn’t everyone’s idea of a gourmet meal, but it can be a lifesaver in a prolonged emergency scenario. Investing in a good dehydrator is a great way to help secure your food supply, particularly if you’re already growing your own food. A dehydrator plus a permaculture garden can produce considerable amounts of non-perishable food. Check out some of the dehydrator buying guides available online and decide which of the many available models is right for you.
5. Cleaning Supplies
If you have to spend extended time in your home during an emergency, keeping a relatively clean and sanitary environment can make all the difference. Not just in comfort but in health and safety. A basic prepper cleaning kit should include:
Once you’ve assembled your kit, it’s also a good idea to learn some basic DIY cleaning product recipes. These time-honored recipes will help you maintain cleanliness and sanitation. Even in the face of emergencies.
6. Airborne Particle Safety Gear
7. Insulated Clothing
This one depends somewhat on the climate of your region, but unless you’re in a very hot climate, you should be prepared to stay warm in an emergency. You probably already have some insulated gear, but just because you have a North Face or two doesn’t mean you’re prepared. Make sure that you have tough cold-weather gear that stands up to prolonged wear and harsh conditions. Ideally something waterproof. And it’s also important not to forget essential accessories like one or more pairs of durable insulated work gloves to protect your hands. Both from cold and from mechanical or environmental hazards.
8. Backup Prescriptions
The last thing you want in an emergency is for anyone in your family to be without critical prescription medication. So talk to your doctor about getting a backup supply of your most important prescription medications to keep with your first aid kit. This is one that requires some upkeep, as most prescription medicines will eventually expire. So keep a running schedule of when you’ll need to change them out. If someone in your family wears corrective lenses, make sure they have at least one pair of backup glasses. Contact lenses will often require too much work and sanitation.
If you've been shtf prepping for a while you'll probably already have one or more of these, but if you don’t, it’s time to get one. Even if you do, it’s worth checking if your current multi-tool has everything you need for an emergency scenario. A basic keychain model may not cut it for a real-life emergency scenario. Take a look at a multi-tool buying guide to determine which features you’ll need the most and which models will serve you best.
SHTF Prepping Gear List Conclusion
Tomorrow makes no promises, but you can always make sure that you’re as ready as you can be to take it on. By making smart investments in these nine items now, you can help increase your readiness and protect yourself and your family if the worst happens. So start building your SHTF Prepping Gear before it's too late.