Free 78 Item Preppers Checklist: Not Just What But Why

Free 78 Item Preppers Checklist: Not Just What But Why
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Preppers ChecklistThis is Skilled Survival’s Preppers Checklist.

A prepper’s supply list that not only tells you what items and tools to stock for future emergencies but also how and why these resources are important.

We’ll deep dive into all the core essentials everyone needs to survive (like food and water) but also cover some lesser known items you’ll want to acquire as well. We’ll also go over a few of the best solutions for each item.

By the end of this preppers checklist – you’ll have your own stockpiling game plan for a variety of emergencies.

Here at Skilled Survival, we plan for the worst and hope for the best.

That means this preppers checklist is extensive and is written with a worst-case scenario in mind. A long term, widespread, emergency disaster in which life, as we know, becomes changed for a very long time.

Some people call such a major disaster event “TEOTWAWKI” (the end of the world as we know it) others call it “SHTF” (shit hits the fan).

And we could argue endlessly how likely any of these scenarios are, but we’re not interested in that conversation today.

Instead, if you plan for the worst, your plan will cover all emergencies big or small, long or short. If you plan for the worst, you’ll be ready. And that’s what’s important.

Before we jump in, make sure you bookmark this page right now so you can come back to this free preppers checklist often to build out your preps over time. Go ahead, do it now, before you forget.

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Water and Hydration

“When the well is dry, we learn the worth of water.” – Benjamin Franklin

For a SHTF event, you’ll want a large abundant source of clean, fresh drinking water at your disposal.

Maybe you live near a river, pond, lake, stream or have your own well. These are all great options if they don’t become contaminated or dry up.

But what’s your back up plan should your main water source become compromised? Or what if you don’t have a reliable source of drinking water should the taps run dry?

Drinking contaminated water will make you sick and can even kill you in some circumstances. But worst yet, having no water will kill you even faster.

We all know the body needs continuous hydration to function properly. It only takes a few days without water to die.

So, you must stock up on water – no exceptions.

You get to decide how much to stock and here are the tools to help you do it right.

1 – Survival Water BricksWater Bricks Stacked

Survival water bricks are the most convenient and simplest way to store a lot of water without taking up much space.

Water bricks are strong, stackable and make hauling water easier with a build in handle. They also take up very little space.

Each brick holds up to 3.5 gallons. So, ten bricks would give you and your family 35 gallons of water.

This amount would last a family of 4 about a week.

So, invest in a few water bricks today, and you can always add more later as your plans and needs grow.

If you don’t have any water stored yet, then this is your number 1 priority. Do this today.

This action alone could buy you weeks of survival in a worst-case scenario.

2 – Rainwater Collection System

We store water to ensure we have what we need in a prolonged emergency to keep ourselves and our families hydrated.

But in a worst-case scenario, we also need to replenish our fresh water stockpile or eventually, you’ll run out.

If you have a river, lake, stream, or even a backyard pool, then you may be all set and can forgo a rainwater collection system. But for everyone else, you should collect as much of the free H2O falling from the sky as you can.

At a minimum, you’ll need a large sturdy rain barrel with a spigot at the bottom. You can install the barrel under a gutter’s downspout to collect rainwater coming off your roof.

However, this is just the quick and easy solution. These systems can become much larger, more complex to handle longer-term scenarios. Here’s an article you should read to get information on this important topic and these complex rainwater collection systems.

Note: if the emergency is nuclear, rain water may be contaminated with fallout.

3 – Filtration System

You should stockpile fresh, clean drinkable water in water bricks or whatever water storage system you choose. But you must always filter and purify all new sources of water you collect. Especially after a worst-case disaster.

You should never consume untreated water unless your 100 percent certain it’s free of harmful contaminants. After a major disaster, you may not be able to trust those rivers, lakes, streams, or ponds the way we do today.

The Big Berkey is an easy gravity feed water filtration solution for families.

The Big Berkey is not small, so it’s not very portable. But we’re talking about stocking up and staying put, not bugging out, so this is the survival water filter you want.

4 – Jugs of Bleach

Many people already know this, but for those who don’t, it’s true that a small amount of bleach added to water will purify and kill most harmful bacteria or viruses.

Bleach is easy to stockpile; you can buy it in bulk and at a reasonable price. Just a few gallons of this stuff will last a long time.

It can also be used as a cleaning agent as well. So, it’s one of those excellent multi-use – multi-purpose items we all cherish and embrace. Get some.

Note: Bleach cannot remove water contaminated with chemicals, oils, poisonous substances, sewage or any physical item contamination. 

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Food Stockpile

Just like water, you must replace the calories you burn off to remain a healthy (happy) human being. The process of not replacing the calories you burn is called starvation.

I won’t go into the gruesome details today, but trust me, starvation is a horrible way to die.

So, while severe dehydration kills much faster, the agony period is also much shorter. Even in a situation of zero calorie intake, you’re still looking at nearly a month (or sometimes longer) for the body to perish due to starvation.

So, it’s a slow, painful way to go. That’s why you want to stock up and avoid this fate at all costs.

5 – Freeze Dried Meals

Valley Food Storage PackagingFirst, we’re going to cover the fastest, easiest, simplest way to get a large food stockpile in place. However, be forewarned – it’s not the cheapest way to go.

Buying a large amount of pre packaged freeze-dried meals from a reputable vendor is the ultimate food stockpile short cut.

If you choose the right vendor, you’ll get a large variety of easy to make meals, stacked, packed in Mylar bags, and delivered straight to your front door.

These are nutritious meals in a pouch; just mix with boiling water, stir, and you have a complete meal.

And the meal options are impressive. Way more variety than those old school MRE’s.

The most important aspect is the meals are usually guaranteed for up to 25 years due to the food being freeze dried and packaged in Mylar bags with nitrogen.

This means you don’t have to worry about the major headaches of food stockpile rotations and spoilage.

Also, these pre packaged meals are nutritious and delicious, so you can avoid the issues of stocking different spices and additives to make your “bags of rice and beans” tasty.

It’s the ultimate “set it and forget it” “done for you,” food stockpile solution. If you have the money, then this is the best way to go.

It may even end up being the best investment you ever make because if you end up needing it; it’ll prevent starvation! That’s an excellent return on your dollars if you ask me.

I personally use and recommend Valley Food Storage’s freeze-dried foods.

You can buy a years’ worth right now and be done with it, or you can buy a few months’ worth at a time. That’s up to you.

Your other option for food stockpiling is the Do It Yourself route…

6 – DIY Food Stockpile

So, your other main option to stockpiling a large amount of food is to do-it-yourself. Lots of people prefer this option, but it does take more time, effort, and planning to do it right.

First, you’ll need a list of the best long shelf life foods. Some of the core stables on this list are rice, beans, wheat, dried pasta, etc.

Then you’ll need to start acquiring those foods at your local grocery store. You’ll want to price shop and look for the best deal based upon calorie per dollar.

Once you bring these long shelf life foods home, you want to store them in a cool, dry, vermin free location.

Cool and dry locations help to prevent premature spoilage, and vermin free keeps the critters from snacking on your hard-earned stockpile.

You should also consider putting these foods into large Mylar bags and then placing them into food grade plastic buckets with lids to seal.

You’ll also need to buy some oxygen absorbers to remove any remaining oxygen from the storage bags to help prolong the shelf life of your stockpile.

As you can see, there’s a lot more to this process than most people realize. You need to educate yourself on this process to avoid any mistakes. Mistakes can jeopardize your hard work and precious calories.

So far all we’ve talked about is bulk foods like rice and beans, but nobody wants to eat plain rice and beans for very long.

Sure, that works for short-term emergencies, but if we’re talking worst case, unseasoned rice and beans will get old fast.

So, you should also plan on adding seasonings and spices to your stockpile.

You’ll also want to add other tasty items that have a bit of a shorter shelf life – for example, peanut butter.

Food Rotation

And this is where food rotation comes into play.

If you buy five large jars of peanut butter over the next few months, you’ll need to consume them in order from oldest to newest.

When your family finishes a jar of peanut butter, you’ll start consuming the oldest remaining peanut butter next (before it spoils) and then buy a new peanut butter to add to the back of peanut butter inventory.

Same idea goes for canned goods or anything under a decade of shelf life.

It’s a process. You must stick to it, but it’s essential. If you don’t properly rotate and stay organized, your large stockpile of food will expire and could spoil.

Not only is spoilage a big waste of energy, time and money, but if you happen to consume it out of desperation in an emergency, you could get ill – which is the last thing you want in a widespread, worst case emergency.

DIY is without a doubt the most affordable way to stockpile a bunch of calories emergency. No argument here but you need to learn how to do it right to avoid disastrous mistakes.

I do some of both. I’ve purchased some food from my recommended vendor (Valley Food Storage) and DIY stockpile lots of food as well.

survival seed vaultOne more DIY food item I stockpile is survival seeds. I bought these heirloom seeds in a survival seed vault so that they last a very long time. I choose heirloom seeds so I can save the seeds at the end of each harvest year and replant those later.

7 – Daily Multivitamins

I highly recommend stocking up on a good daily multivitamin. Getting all the essential vitamins and minerals in your diet won’t be easy after SHTF.

And while you should plan to have lots of variety in your survival diet through your food stockpiling efforts, it’s good to have a daily dose of everything you need in a gummy.

Plus, you can use these to barter with your less prepared neighbors. There will no doubt be those who are severely nutrition deficient. They may trade quite a lot of their valuable stuff for a bottle of vitamins.

8 – Cooking Fuel Source

In a worst-case survival scenario, we have to assume we won’t have access to standard cooking methods – such as natural gas or electricity.

And to cook food you’ve stockpiled, you’ll need to boil water at a minimum (for freeze dried meals) or an oven for baking.

There are a several survival cooking methods you can consider.

You could stockpile kerosene. You could look at a propane. You could buy a small heater stove with fuel canisters (the setup used by backpackers).

But honestly, these items are typically difficult to store in bulk quantities, and bulk storage can create safety hazards as well.

So, we think the best solution to stockpiling fuel for cooking is firewood. Of course, you need a lot of space to store a lot of firewood (so there are tradeoffs).

But with firewood, you can use it to build natural fires for cooking. And if you just need to boil water, to go with your freeze-dried meals, then you can get yourself a bio stove (or something similar) and easily boil water that way.

Plus, with a bio stove, you can generate electricity from the waste heat to charge batteries for a radio or charge a set of walkie talkies.

But using firewood to make an oven is a different story. You could use a simple Weber grill or even use a Dutch oven. But my favorite way to cook food in an oven is to use the sun’s free rays.

The Sun Oven

The sun oven is an incredible invention, and a must own for everyone who is preparing for a disaster.

It’s not the cheapest piece of gear you’ll buy, but it’s one of the best.

all american sun oven

Of course, you need to live somewhere that gets a fair amount of sun throughout the year. But the sun oven does work on partly cloudy days.

Plus, if you’re not in a hurry, you can even get water up to a boil using it.

So, this device helps ensure you can cook your meals and eat your stockpiled food, without having to load up on a massive amount of liquid or gas fuels.

Plus, in a worst-case scenario, the smell and the sight of fire and cooking food might bring unfriendly starving folks around to relieve you of your meal.

With the sun oven, you can cook your food much more discretely. It’s truly one of the best “worst-case scenario” cooking solutions.

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Clothing and Warmth Items

Too many folks nowadays have way more clothes than they know what to do with. A line up of unworn garments just hanging in the back of the closet, unloved and forgotten about.

But having a few extra shirts, coats, socks and underwear is not a terrible idea when planning for a worst case event.

In a true long term disaster, you may lose the option of purchasing new clothes at the closest mall or online.

You actually may just have to live with what you have for a while after the emergency event.

But not all clothes are created equal. You need to focus on sturdy and warm (especially if you live in cooler regions).

9 – Spare Clothes

I won’t bore you with extreme detail here. Just make sure you have some extra warm clothes (especially if you live in cooler climates).

The items I recommend are things like warm flannel shirts, sturdy blue jeans, thick long johns, long wool socks, bib or full-length overalls, etc.

As humans, we don’t have fur or blubber to protect us from the elements; we have clothes. So, don’t take them for granted.

Take an inventory, make sure you’re comfortable with the number of spares items you have.

Warmth and longevity are more important than fashion. That’s why I trust brands such as Carhartt for my working and warmth needs.

10 – Sewing / Supplies

Home economics 101 – sewing.

It’s not quite a lost art (yet), but the trend is definitely on the way out. But you don’t have to fall into today’s modern throw away society.

Mend is your friend.

Don’t just toss out those blue jeans with a hole in the knees, get a sewing kit and some supplies and learn how to patch ‘em up.

I recommend you do all your sewing by hand. You shouldn’t rely on just a sewing machine because they rely on electricity.

The one exception for this is if you currently produce lots of off grid power already for your home. If this is you, then you can rely on a sewing machine because you’re not affected should the grid go down for good.

For everyone else, get one of these sewing kits and learn how to use it.

11 – Survival Gloves

mechanix-gloves-1

I almost put “gloves” in with the rest of the “spare clothes” category above, but then I thought better of it.

Gloves are crucial for protecting your hands from all sorts of dangers – cold, splinters, cuts, scraps, pinches, etc.

One scrape of the knuckle could turn into a deadly infection in a worst case situation. One where you can’t be certain, there will be medical help or antibiotics readily available.

Also, when it gets cold out, you’ll need a set of warm gloves.

With the right set of gloves on your hands, you’ll have enough dexterity to use your survival knife or a firearm without taking them off.

Stock up on a few sets, because again, you might not be able to get more later.

12  Footwear

Again, footwear deserves its own category. If you don’t take care of your feet, you’ll become a major liability to you and your family’s survival.

Don’t go cheap on footwear. A good set of boots can last a very long time even if worn daily – while a cheap pair will wear out in no time.

Also, while flip flops are technically considered footwear and are nice for a relaxing day on the beach, you’ll want rugged boots for survival.

And strong, healthy feet are a critical resource in a survival essential. Blisters, bruises, rolled ankles will slow you down which you can ill afford in a legit disaster.

You’ll need to be active, alert, and be able to move fast for all sorts of reasons. You’re at a significant disadvantage if you have sore feet due to bad boots.

There’s a reason why soldiers often stole the boots off a dead comrade in WWI. If the boots were the same size and in better shape than what a soldier currently had on, they upgraded on the spot.

13 – Stocking Cap

If you live in cold environments, you want to prepare for this with some good stocking caps or even a few high-quality ski masks.

In a worst-case scenario, you’ll likely have to occasionally venture out into the cold and might not have a heated car or truck to warm up in.

So, bundling up will be your best option and keeping your head and face warm even in blizzard conditions is smart today and for a horrible future emergency.

14 – Hand and Toe Warmers

Keep a few body warming packets stashed away in your stockpile – just in case. Save them for serious emergencies only, like just before the onset of frostbite.

You can’t afford to lose your fingers or toes to frostbite in survival. That would be a “game over” type situation.

15 – Rain Poncho with Hood

Nothing will drain heat from your body (and from your soul) than hiking for working in drenched clothes.

It’s a miserable experience, and it’s very dangerous in the cold.

This Princeton study shows “Generally conductive heat loss accounts for only about 2% of the overall loss. However, with wet clothes, the loss is increased 5x.”

So pack a poncho. Even durable ponchos are lightweight and take up very little space.

Get one with a hood to keep the rain off your head.

Also, get one that’s durable and won’t tear easily in the rugged wilderness. It may cost a few dollars more, but it’s worth it. Because if you’re cold and wet for long, hypothermia is coming.

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kerosene tankHeat and Warmth

If you live in a region with cold seasons, do you have a plan for providing heat that’s not tied to grid power or propane truck deliveries?

Again, in short term scenarios, you can plan to stock up on kerosene or propane. Both are viable, and the choice comes down to personal preference. Here’s an article that goes over the pros and cons of both options.

But in worst-case, it will be difficult to stockpile enough fuel to last you through an entire winter (or multiple winters).

So, what’s a well-prepared survivalist to do?

16 –Woodstove

wood stove

I get that this combination might not be possible for everyone but in my opinion, it’s the best option. So, I’ll cover it first.

Wood stoves are an incredible invention. The newer more efficient models can heat an entire home or cabin using very little firewood.

Having a woodstove and a massive pile of seasoned firewood is a dream setup for preppers.

The only thing that makes this situation better is having access to a bunch of downed trees on your property. These trees equate to an abundance of “free” heat to keep you and your family warm for the long haul.

17 – Alternative Energy and Traditional Heater

Another option to heating your home without grid power is to have an alternative energy source to run your home’s heater.

I won’t go into detail behind each alternative energy source – since we have an entire survival guide dedicated to the topic. So instead I’ll just list the most popular ones you may want to look into further.

  • Hydro-Electric (water wheel)
  • Bio Gas Generator
  • Solar Panels
  • Wind Turbines
  • Bicycle Generator

Each of these DIY energy sources has its pros and cons. Some can be scaled up to large systems others cannot.

For some, it may make sense to invest into one of these systems while others may prefer to setup a couple of smaller systems to run dedicated uses.

The bottom line is getting off the grid for your heating and electricity needs is a real game changer – not only for heat but for all the other things we use electricity for in our daily lives.

18 – Tact Bivvytact bivvy emergency sleeping bag

Finally, if you live in an apartment, trailer home, or none of the above setups are possible for you, then this is your last best option.

Because if you’re not prepared at all, eventually you’ll run out of furniture to burn in a barrel.

So instead, get an emergency bivvy sleeping bag for each member of your family.

We all know the coldest hours of most days occur in the middle of the night when we’re sleeping and not active. These bitter cold night temps and lack of activity are the times you’re most in danger of freezing to death.

So, this emergency sleeping bag is a survival tool that will help prevent this horrible outcome. It works by trapping the heat your body naturally releases inside your sleeping bag.

Traditional sleeping bags are made from cotton or synthetic polymers, and while the really good ones will keep you warm in extreme cold temperature, they don’t hold in your body heat as well as an emergency Tact bivvy.

A Tact Bivvy is made with a space age material that traps up to 90% of your body heat. So even in the coldest of nights, it’ll trap heat your body naturally generates to help keep you above freezing to death temperatures.

Pair this TACT Bivvy with a high quality, low-temperature sleeping bag and you’ll improve your changes of cold weather survival significantly.

I’d even suggest those with a woodstove or alternative energy heat to invest in a few TACT Bivvy’s as a “last resort” solution.

Because they are a very smart item to store in your vehicles glove box for regular winter emergencies as well. It could save your life today and save your life tomorrow so get one for each family member and every vehicle you own.

portable solar panel and phoneSmaller Energy Tools

We touched on some larger alternative energy solutions, but I wanted to show you a few smaller setups. Some everyday tools you can use to generate some electricity on a smaller scale.

19 – Biostove

biolite camping stove

Some technologies make our society more complacent and less self-reliant, but that doesn’t mean all technologies are bad.

Some technologies do the opposite; they make us more self-reliant. The Bio Stove is one of these amazing technologies that are worth investing in – here’s why.

Everyone knows you can burn sticks and leaves to create fire. And you can use that fire to cook food. But did you know you can also generate power from that same fire? You can, if you own this new Bio Stove.

Cook your food and charge your smartphone at the same time.

To me, this is a highly useful device since it kills two birds with one stone. It’s an efficient way to cook a meal, and you can get power from that same heat energy. This is a dream scenario for prepared survivalists.

20 – Solar Charger

goal zero battery recharge kit

Having the ability to create lots of free energy from solar panels is great. It’s a worthwhile goal to get off the grid completely someday, and a few of us have reached this goal.

But for the masses, we’re still totally dependent on the grid. But this doesn’t mean you can’t prepare to capture some of the sun’s rays for a few luxury items in an emergency.

You may want to invest in a solar panel generator system that’s available on the market today for such an emergency.

Goal Zero makes several small, portable solar panel systems worth investing in.

These panels will allow you to power important tools and devices we talk about in other sections of this checklist.

Tools and devices such as radios or walkie talkies. Items such as a computer or a set of rechargeable batteries – batteries that might power a flashlight for illumination.

While even a few of these won’t be enough to support refrigeration, it will provide you a few energy luxuries you’d rather not live without.

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Man Starting A Fire In The Woods 1Fire Starting Tools and Gear

Fire is your life blood in a survival emergency. You need it to purify water, cook food, for nighttime warmth, safety, and it’s a huge morale booster.

But what if you only have a lighter and a few matches in your home right now? Well, then in just a few weeks you might be out of luck.

That is unless you stock up on key fire-starting tools or learn how to start a fire with sticks.

So, everyone should have three independent ways to start a fire, and you should stock up on those methods to ensure fire-starting never becomes an issue.

21 – Stormproof Matches

These Stormproof matches are the real deal.

Regular matches are not good enough. If regular matches get wet, you can forget about having a fire. But with these, you can get them wet and stomp on them, and they’ll still stay lite.

Having a nice stash of matches is smart, but unless you have thousands of them, you may still run out. That’s why you also need a Ferro Rod Striker.

22 – Ferro Rod Striker

Fire Striker’s work great if you know what you’re doing. It helps to understand the fire starting basics – including the use of very fine, very dry tinder to help get the sparks to ignite.

This fire striker is fantastic and is designed with 3,000 strikes, but practice with it a lot before relying on for emergencies.

The key here is this Firestarter cost very little and has the potential of thousands of fires within.

This is an excellent tool to have in your home disaster stock. A couple of these and you’ll never have to worry about running out of sparks ever again.

23 –Electric Lightertesla-coil-lighter

A lighter is a lighter, right? Not really.

Can your cheap BIC lighter work after dropping it in a river? Nope. Will a cheap BIC lighter’s flame stay lite in 80 MPH winds? Nope.

So, I recommend spending a couple of extra dollars on a new badass fire-starting technology: A Rechargeable Coil Lighter.

This lighter doesn’t use fuel; it uses electricity to create an electric arc which is both windproof and waterproof.

It charges via a USB port, so you’ll need a solar charger, a hand crank radio to recharge, or a bio stove to generate free electricity (all items discussed in more detail in other sections of this preppers checklist).

So by pairing the tools to create some free energy and then having a Tesla lighter, you just solved your long term fire starting dilemma.

24 – Tinder

As an experienced survivalist, you can normally find natural tinder in the wilderness. However, how do most of us start a fire? We use old crumpled up newspapers or similar resources, right?

But have you considered what you’ll use as tinder if the daily newspapers and junk mail stop showing up?

This is one area of stocking up that many people overlook because they forget how hard it is to start a fire without a good tinder source.

Cotton balls work well as tinder and you can buy them in bulk. They are also light and take up very little space. They also work even better if you add a small dab of Vaseline to them. So, Vaseline is another great item to stock up on.

You could also stock up on some TinderQuick fire starting tabs. Or you could stockpile all the lint from your dryer’s lint trap.

The other long-term solution we like is to get a tool that can turn a stick into fine tinder. This helps to ensure you never run out – since you can easily make your own with sticks.survival tinderbox magnifying glass

This tool by Gerber is one option. It has a fine grate to create tinder and includes a magnifying glass to start the tinder on fire using the sun and magnification (another fire-starting tool in and of itself).

Or you can add a couple of pencil sharpeners to your stock. Yes, they sharpen pencils, but the tiny shavings make great tinder. And you can use any small stick instead of pencils to create as much fine flammable tinder as your heart desires.

25 – Small Magnifying Glass 

With the sun you can use magnification to focus light energy. This focused energy can be harnessed to make a fire. This device will work if you run out of butane or matches.

Plus, this Gerber Tinderbox helps make fine tinder from sticks and includes the magnifying glass built in.

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Survival Medical Kit ImageFirst Aid and Medical Supplies

When in a worst case, prolonged emergency, we can’t rely on timely professional medical attention. We may have to become our own physicians, and so you need the basic tools to take care of your family’s medical needs.

So, add essential first aid supplies to be able to treat these issues. Remember, a minor cut can kill via infection if not properly treated.

26 – Personal Medications

If you have prescribed medications, then stock up as much as you can now. Hopefully, the meds you take are helpful but not life dependent.

If that’s your situation, then you need to figure out how to stock up as much of it or ration it as long as possible. There’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to get more of your meds in a worst-case emergency.

27 – Antibiotics

Got survival antibiotics?

Before the invention of antibiotics, even a small scratch or cut could turn deadly. Infections are hard to beat, especially once they enter the blood stream.

In a worst case disaster, you won’t be able to see your doctor and get an antibiotics prescription. You’ll instead get to survive on what you stockpiled. That’s why antibiotics are on this list.

However, there’s no easy way to load up on a bunch of prescription antibiotics. Doctors control the amount each patient can purchase.

So, the next best thing for stockpiling is to get a variety of antibiotics for fish and bird antibiotics. You’ll need to do some more research on which varieties to buy.

The bottom line is I’d rather have something to take to fight an infection than to be a helpless soul. 

28 – Wound Gauze Roll

Gauze is the ideal dressing for bad cuts or severe burns.  It’s light and takes up very little pack space.

29 – Surgical Tape

This stuff is made to keep gauze, pads, and bandages in place even when you’re on the move.

30 – Band Aids / Mole Skin Pads

Band-Aids are the best solution for small cuts and lacerations. They help keep open wounds clean and protected, which helps prevent an infection from developing.

You should also add a few moleskin pads for blisters. Band-Aids won’t stay in place on your feet while walking, but moleskin will.

31 – Neosporin (or similar salve)

Add this cream to any cut or laceration to help prevent infections.

32 – Pain Killers

For minor aches and pains, these can help keep you going. For serious injuries, pain killers will take the edge off until you can get more help.

33 – Vaseline

We mentioned Vaseline early since it works so well as a fire accelerant. However, this stuff is great for chapped lips, dry skin, and rashes. It’s an item you should add to your medical kit.

34 – Blood Clotting Sponge

Nasty, deep wounds won’t clot on their own. You have to apply intense pressure to the wound site for a long time to get the blood stop, congeal, and begin the healing process.

These Quick Clot Sponges will help with this life or death effort.

35 – Super Glue

Super glue can be used to seal up small cuts. Plus, it comes in handy in numerous other survival uses.

36 – Sterile Alcohol Prep Pads

Clean all wounds early and often with these alcohol wipes. The alcohol will clean the wound, killing infection-causing bacteria.

37 – Hydrogen Peroxide  

Use hydrogen peroxide to keep wounds clean and bacteria free.

38 – Tourniquet

You won’t need a medical tourniquet unless it’s a very serious life-threatening injury. But if you end up needing one, you’ll be thankful you stock it.

Stopping blood loss in a severed leg or artery saves lies. Belts can work in a pinch, but you’d rather have the real deal.

39 – Cotton Swabs

Use Q-tips to clean your ears. Allowing excess wax to build up in your ears can lead to infection.

And, the wax buildup will also muffle your hearing. And clear hearing is a major advantage in survival.

They are also ideal for applying small amounts of medical salves and liquids.

Lastly, you can tear off the cotton ends and use them as tinder to start a fire.

They are extremely light and useful, so feel free to pack a couple hundred of them.

40 – Tweezers and Nail Clippers

Pack a sharp set of tweezers to get slivers out and a good set of nail clippers to trim your nails.

Also, use the nail clippers to help avoid hand nails. I used to bite my nails and would occasionally get an infected hang nail.

My finger got so infected once I had to take pain pills, use Neosporin and lost my entire finger nail a few weeks later. Don’t make the same mistake, take care of your finger and toe nails the proper way.

41 – Insect Repellent  

Mosquitos are a nuisance and can transmit diseases, so if they are abundant in your region, you’ll want to pack a repellent spray with high amounts of DEET.

42 – Sun Screen  

You should stock up on a fair amount of this stuff. Save it for the worst days and instead, keep your skin covered up with long sleeves and hats (even on warm days).

Get one with an SPF30, like this one, to protect you for longer periods of time. Higher SPF’s than this are mainly just a marketing ploy.

Want a Downloadable and Printable Version Of This Prepper’s Checklist? Click Here To Get Your FREE Copy Of It.

shower headPersonal Hygiene Items

This is survival we are talking about, so if you enjoy daily hot showers get ready for an abrupt change.

Not only will mass amounts of water be harder to come by post disaster but heating water up to levels that make showers enjoyable will be an extreme luxury. Why? Because it takes a lot of energy to heat water.

And these challenges don’t even consider how you’re going to create the pressure to needed to run water through a shower head.

So the more likely scenario (if you are prepared) would be to have baths (not showers), they would be less frequent, and you would heat the water using a cast iron Dutch oven over a wood stove.

The point here is that unless you invest a lot of time and energy into your preps today, your hygiene is not going to be nearly as good or convenient as it is today.

Improved hygiene and sanitation are both highly dependent upon our modern society’s wonders – grid power and water distribution systems. If these modern wonders go away, so will widespread hygiene and sanitation.

43 – Soap

Stock up on soap. That way you can maintain some level of cleanliness from time to time. Nothing fancy here. Don’t pay extra for skin moisturizing or scented, just a cheap and effective bar of soap like this one.

Buy in bulk. Also, consider learning how to make your own homemade soap. It’s surprisingly easier than you think.

44 – Razor Blades     

There’s a lot of uses for razor blades, one of which is to shave. Now, I don’t plan on shaving much (or at all) in an emergency. I’ll go full ZZ top.

But if that’s not your thing, then you’ll want to have plenty of razors (or you could use a sharp survival knife) to keep your smooth baby face intact.

Plus, most American women shave their legs, so blades of some sort will allow them to avoid having hairy legs.

But in a real worst-case survival situation, the last thing you be worrying about is facial and leg hair. So that’s not the primary reason to have these on hand, they are useful survival tools beyond personal hygiene as well.

45 – Oral Hygiene

I’m not sure there’s anything more painful or annoying than having tooth decay issues. Cavities, gingivitis, abscess, etc.

Without access to dental procedures, you’ll get to live with these issues. So the best way to avoid them is to prevent them. That means you should invest heavily in good oral hygiene.

Dental work will be rare after TEOTWAWKI so taking the extra effort to prevent tooth problems will pay off in the long run.

This means you’ll want to stock up on some good toothbrushes, lots of toothpaste and a bunch of dental floss.

46 – Female Hygiene

You could stock up on a bunch of tampons, or you can invest in a menstrual cup.

Ultimately, the choice is yours but unless you’re stocking up on a lot of tampons, you might also want a backup plan should you ever run out.

47 – Hand Sanitizer

Use a small hand sanitizer to clean your hands before eating. Try to avoid ingesting bacteria from your hands and creating stomach issues or illnesses.

Diarrhea can become deadly if you don’t have access to medical attention or the right medical supplies. Again, prevention is best.

48 – Toilet Paper

For shorter term emergencies, it’s a good idea to have some toilet paper stockpiled. However, you should put a plan together for dealing with a longer-term emergency.

As gross as it sounds you might want to dedicate some small towels for this purpose, where you clean them and reuse them. Better than leaves and corn cobs though.

Want a Downloadable and Printable Version Of This Prepper’s Checklist? Click Here To Get Your FREE Copy Of It.

Wall Of ToolsEssential Hand Tools

You can have all the power tools in the world, but without fuel or electricity to run them, you’ll be SOL. So, it’s imperative to stock up and collect all the basic hand tools.

Old school, yes, but guaranteed to still work in any emergency.

49 – Hammers

Any head of household worth their salt has at least one standard claw hammer. A good one will last you a lifetime, and for most, that’s all you’ll ever need.

However, there are a few specialty hammers you should acquire as well such as a ball peen hammer, a rubber mallet, sledge hammer, etc.

50 – Shovels

This is another hand tool standard. Digging in an emergency will be required. Not to plant a tree but to dig a latrine trench or an outhouse pit.

Make sure it’s a sturdy shovel and get a backup or 2 as well. The part that’s most prone to breaking on a full-length shovel is the handle.

But if your truly handy, you’ll be able to make yourself a new shovel handle should your break. But to do that you’ll likely need a good survival knife.

You might also want a few specialty shovels as well such as a good snow shovel, a small hand trowel, or a survival shovel.

51 – Survival Knife 

I can’t stress how important it is to invest in a high-quality survival knife.bushcraft survival knife

Spend some quality time researching good survival knives. Find one that meets your needs best because a good survival knife has so many critical survival uses.

Then once you’ve settled on “the one,” make sure you learn how to use it to make lots of items from scratch with it.

52 – Pliers

Have you ever worked on a serious project without the right pliers? Most DIY projects require this essential hand tool.

And there is a vast variety of them you’ll want to own. There are standard pliers, needle nose pliers, vice grips, monkey wrenches just to name a few.survival plyers leatherman

I’m also going to add a bench vise to the category as well. While this is not technically a plier it performs a similar function, but it’s static and not mobile. It holds items firmly place so you can work on stuff with both your hands.

Pliers do things human hands cannot. These are another essential hand tool necessary for successful long-term survival.

53 – Saws

There are a vast variety of saws you’ll want to add to your garage or shop in preparation for a worst-case disaster.

Let’s name a few: hand saw, hack saw, two men saw, coping saw, etc.

Carpentry work will be highly desired if the world is ever thrown into survival mode. Having these tools (and knowing how to use them) will be a craft not only to create tools and fix things. But can be used to help others in a barter economy.

54 – Hatchets and Axes

As we discussed already, wood is an essential resource to create heat for cooking and warmth. But we also use wood to build things.

Before you can begin building things out of wood, you need to turn a tree into useful lumber.

One way to down trees for wood or split trees into useful chunks is by using a sturdy axea.

But even if you use a two man saw to down a tree, the fastest way to split wood is by ax or hatchet.

The bottom line is you should own at least one of each at the bare minimum.

55 – Hand Mill  

Let’s move from the shop to the kitchen. Many people forget that the best way to turn wheat into flour without electricity is a good, high-quality hand grinder.

If you don’t have a hand grinder, you only other option to create flours based on raw grain is by using a stone and pestle.

But trust me, you want to invest in a hand mill today to avoid this slow and tedious process.

56 – Hand Pump

Just because life as we know it may change doesn’t mean you’ll no longer have a need for a good hand pump.

For example, the bicycle might become the standard form of local travel for everyone. Especially if the fuel industry stops and the fuel available dries up.

So, having the ability to pump air into tires will be necessary.

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Illumination Tools

Illumination is necessary for all emergencies – short or long term. You’ll need good light to work under the darkness of night. And if forced to move or work in the middle of the night you’ll need it to see where you’re going.

I can’t imagine dealing with an emergency without illumination devices. Attempting to do so would put you at an extreme disadvantage.

57 – Super Bright LED Headlamp 

Two words: Hands-Free.

I recommend getting one with both high beam, low beam settings; as well as rechargeable batteries.

And with the rechargeable batteries, you’ll need a way to recharge them. That’s where a solar charger comes in handy to keep your LED headlamp batteries charged up.

58 – Super Bright LED Tactical Flashlight  

firehawk tactical flashlight

While a headlamp is important, you should also stock up a few LED Tactical Flashlights.

You have more control with a handheld LED flashlight and can shine it in multiple directions without having to turn your head. I prefer using a Tactical flashlight instead of a headlamp if I’m not using my hands to accomplish a task.

Get one that’s superb right but only needs a single AA battery. That way you can use rechargeable AA’s and don’t have to stock up on thousands large or unique battery sizes.

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59 – LED Lantern

At The Time Of This Post – You Could Get These 4 Lanterns For 19.99

If you took my advice, you now have some headlamps and tactical flashlights, but what if you want to illuminate an entire room? This is why you need a few good LED lanterns.

Get one that uses standard sized batteries so you can use your rechargeable batteries to keep the thing running for years to come.

You can charge the batteries using the bio stove or solar panels setups we talked about earlier.

60 – Glow Sticks

Glow sticks work great to light up an entire area and not just a particular spot, which can be helpful for lots of situations.

However, they can give away your position to potential threats so only use these if you know there’s no one hostile around.

Ham Survival Radio GearCommunications Tools

Communication and Intel are crucial for successful survival. Gathering information and sharing information with a survival coalition improves your chances of survival success.

Whether it’s a severe weather forecast or knowing the location of potential threats. The more you know, the more you can plan and adapt. It’s going to be one of your main defense tactics.

If you’re a part of a small group, you’ll want to communicate with each other over short distances.

And very useful if you get separated or are planning an ambush.

61 – Hand Crank AM/FM/NOAA Digital Radio

You’ll want regular updates on how the “situation” is progressing. This helps to decide your next move – providing confidence you’re heading away from danger and not into it.

The big advantage of a hand cranked radio is that you won’t need to worry about batteries and recharging.

Plus, this hand crank radio has ports so you can use the hand crank function to charge other small electronic devices you’ve brought with you.

You need a surefire way to get all available intel over emergency broadcasts.

62 – Two-Way Radio Walkie Talkies

Owning a set of Walkie Talkies is a smart idea for any survival groups.

If your team gets separated, or you split up for strategic reasons, you’ll still be able to keep in touch at short distances.

Recharge your Walkie Talkies with your solar charger or hand crank radio.5

63 – Ham Radio Setup

Ham radio is hands down the best option to communicate with others at long distances in an emergency situation. While walkie talkies or Hand crank radios can tap into your local communications ham radio setups have been known to communicate around the world.

Want a Downloadable and Printable Version Of This Prepper’s Checklist? Click Here To Get Your FREE Copy Of It.

rifle with a gun suppressorSelf Defense Items

In the worst survival conditions, you’re going to be the hunter or be hunted. You need to be prepared to defend yourself and your group from enemy threats.

Threats from wild game and more importantly threats from other humans.

64 – Survival Firearms

So, which firearm is best for survival? To be honest, you could write an entire book on the subject.

It’s a very personal choice with lots of nuances to consider.

Here are two articles that we wrote that covers the subject to get you started on your research: Survival RiflesSurvival Guns.

The good news is since your hunkering down and not bugging out; you can own an entire arsenal of firepower.

You don’t have to choose just one or two guns; you can stock up on 20 of them and as much ammo as possible as well.

65 – Ammunition

Ammo is to prepping like water is to life; essential.

There’s a reason why we always seem to be in an ammo shortage. Thousands of fellow Patriots are stocking up on as much of the stuff as they can get their hands on. Are you?

Ammo not only makes sense from a self-defense and home defense standpoint. But ammo will also be a highly tradeable commodity in a worst case prolonged disaster.

Obviously, you need to invest in other areas of your emergency stocks as well, but it’s not a terrible idea to make ammo one of your primary stock up items.

66 – Bow and Arrows

A couple of the more significant advantages of owning a survival bow are:

  • Arrows are reusable.
  • Bows are silent to shoot, especially in comparison to a firearm.

Here’s a longer list of reasons why survivalists should own a good compound bow or cross bow.

67 – Traps and Snares

Setting out traps to catch small wild game is a good use of your time. Instead of spending hours hunting in the woods, you can set traps and snares, leave them overnight and check on them each morning.

You should practice getting good at using these and learn all the methods to become an expert. It’s a great survival skill to have.

68 – Camouflage

I’m a big fan of camouflage, probably because I’m a duck hunter. I’ve got an excellent set of real tree 3d printed pants, jacket, waders and hat for the natural surroundings of my area.

Well, in a long-term emergency, you’ll not only want camo gear for hunting, but you’ll also want camo gear for home defense and self-defense purposes.

Why? Because if you use a scouting system, you’ll want the scouts to be hidden. They want to see but not be seen, and that’s what camo does.

You also might take it up a notch and go with a full out ghillie suit. These will keep you well hidden in the right natural surrounds.

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Misc. Survival Tools and Supplies

Finally, these are the random survival tools and supplies that will make your bug out just a little bit easier.

69 – Rechargeable Batteries

Add a couple of sets of rechargeable batteries in all the sizes you need for your electronic gear.

USB Batteries

Or consider going with this new USB rechargeable battery technology.

These units are an excellent device to own a few of for emergencies.

70 – Gold (Not Recommended)

It’s anyone’s guess what currency will be in circulation after SHTF, but stockpiling physical survival gold is not something we recommend. Though, we do recommend as part of your financial accounts.

This advice is rare online. Most survival sites suggest gold and silver as one of the best items to stockpile. But gold has no immediate survival value.

You can’t drink it; you can’t eat it, you can’t shoot it.

Gold has historically acted as a great hedge against inflation and has held its value in times of financial crisis.

But hoarding either survival gold or shtf silver in a collapsed lawless society is more likely to be a liability than an asset.

71 – Paper and Pencils

Paper is abundant today but what if suddenly it wasn’t? Paper was extremely useful for communication an area before the telephone. Well, in a worst-case survival world, it may become highly useful again.

It’s also necessary for certain forms of entertainment – like drawing.

It’s not a terrible idea to keep a box or 2 of paper in your stockpiles along with some number 2 pencils.

72 – All Forms Of Entertainment

Keeping one’s sanity without modern forms of entertainment will be an important (but often overlooked) strategy.

With no TV or internet, there will be no shows or Facebook to fill the down time hours.

Instead, you’ll want a nice stash of excellent books. The sort you don’t mind reading, again and again, is best.

Also, any book on DIY projects or survival skills is worth a spot in your home library.

Puzzles are a great way to keep your mind occupied and challenged. Classic strategy games such as chess will also help pass the time.

Board games are good for adults and kids alike.

Playing cards can be used to play hundreds of different forms of strategic games – poker, gin rummy, solitary or even simple games like “slap jack” or “war” we played as kids.

73 – Corrective Lenses 

Another often overlooked item many of us need to stockpile seriously is prescription glasses.

If you are at a severe disadvantage without glasses or contacts, then this is a major area of focus.

I’d recommend you have at minimum one extra set of glasses and preferably 2 or 3. They don’t need to be designer frames that cost hundreds of dollars.

Look for a sturdy pair at a low price point.

You can also stock up on contact lenses, but you’ll also need to stock up on cleaning agents and cases, etc.

Either way, having a pair of frames or 2 as backups is critical for the visually impaired.

74 –Duct Tape 

There are many survival uses for duct tape.

For a list 25 of these applications check out The Daily Sheeple’s 25 Survival Uses For Duct Tape

Look for a bulk deal online and stock up on this essential “DIY” material.

75 – Scissors

There are a few tasks that you’ll be thankful you have scissors for. Often a good knife can substitute scissors but not always.

Just make sure you have a sharp pair or 2 laying around your house, and you should be good to go.

76 – Gas Mask and Filters

As humans, we have no choice – we must breathe all day long, every day for the remainder of our lives. From our first breath at birth to our last breath on our death beds.

Remember we can live without water for three days and food for three weeks? Well, we can live without breath for only about 3 minutes.

Now, the odds are unlikely for oxygen to disappear suddenly. But what if the air you must breathe is poisoned or infected?

You may be forced to breathe death unless you can filter it out. Stock up on good gas mask and filters. You may never need a gas mask it but if you do you’ll be glad you did.

Here’s an article on how to find a high-quality gas mask.

77 – Electrical Tape  

Electrical tape has a lot of worthwhile survival uses beyond just electrical.

The stuff stretches and sticks; there’s nothing quite like it.

78 – Vices

Vices are a way for people to cope with stressful situations. Well, what could be more stressful than a widespread crisis?

So feel free to stock up on alcohol, cigarettes, or even dirty magazines (if that’s your thing).

Not to consume these items yourself necessarily but to have valuable items to trade with should these vices stop becoming readily available.

That case of whiskey in your basement will last forever and hold its value – so it’s one of my favorite vices items to hoard.

Preppers Checklist Wrap Up

My final word of advice is to ta­­ke action today using this free stock and defend checklist. Focus on the highest priority items first – food, water, medical, guns, and ammo.

After that, start building the rest of your list of items. Over time you’ll be able to amass a nice long list of critical survival supplies.

Fellow survivalists understand disasters happen when we least expect them. Complacency kills.

If you wait; it might be too late…

Remember: Prepare, Adapt, and Overcome,

“Just In Case” Jack

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Comments

  1. Ben Leucking says

    Terrific article. Well researched and written.
    This one knocks the socks off just about every other article written on this topic.

  2. Terry Bacorn says

    I have been prepping and studying almost daily, prepping topics for three years and find this article to be the most comprehensive, reasonable and thorough list with detailed explanations I’ve ever found. My personal prepping checklist and bug out bag inventory stocks are typed up with quantities of each items and expiration dates of all medications and food supplies. The lists are specific to each bug out bag or duffel bag locations for easy of finding, when I need them quickly. Having spent thousands of dollars in my bug out bags and packs! I appreciate your effort and thought in designing this very creative list for prepper’s needing guidance. Remember folks … It’s always up to you!!! Don’t be standing there with a dumb look on your face when your family and friend look to you for help.

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