DUCT TAPE: 25 Uses for Survival

Duct Tape –
It’s tough, waterproof, inexpensive, & a must have item for your survival kit!

Did you know it was originally developed to be used as a tape for sealing ammunition during World War II?

Today, it’s commonly used to patch things up at home, but it can do so much more – like keep you safe and alive in the wild…

Written by: Michael Martin
Founder of Bug Out Bag Pro

25 Ways to Use Duct Tape for Survival:

You never know when one of these 25 duct tape hacks might come in handy, or even keep you alive. Go ahead and read over some of the countless ways you can use duct tape, then maybe go practice a few!

1- Repair Rain Gear

Due to its waterproof quality, a duct tape can be used for repairing rain gear. Simply cut a piece of tape and patch it to the affected area to prevent the moisture from drenching your clothes.

2- Rope Replacement

If you face any situation where you need to use rope, simply spread out the roll of duct tape and twist it to form a tough rope cord. Rest assured this makeshift tool will work as good as the original.

3- Patching Holes in Canoes

Again, this is because if its resilient and waterproof quality which makes it possible for repairing holes in life rafts and canoes and enable to be used again above water.

4- Restraining Device

If intruders come in the way, just make use of a simple duct tape to tie them up and prevent them from causing more harm.

5- Pandemic Seal

If ever you are going to face a potential nuclear disaster or a possible pandemic event, use the duct tape to seal small openings and crevices inside your house. Not only will it protect you from being contaminated, but it will add more restraint to prevent hostiles from barging inside.

6- Trail Marker

Cut strips of duct tape and tape it at the side of the tree just enough to be seen right away by the tracking group (about eye level). The more colorful the duct tape used (pastel colors recommended), the better it is to be spotted right away even from afar.

7- Repair Sleeping Bag

Cut a strip of duct tape and stick it into the torn area of your sleeping bag to prevent water and small critters from getting inside.

8- Food Sealant

Use duct tape to re-seal food if your stuff is placed inside a non re-sealable container. Moreover, it can also be used to repair cracked plastic food containers to keep your chow fresh and to prevent any external elements from ruining the quality of your food.

9- Making Arrow Fletchers

Need to hunt but lack any feathers to make fletchers for arrows? Simply cut strips of duct tape and stick it together. Then, shape it to form an arrow fletcher and secure game meat for dinner.

10- For Making a Knife Sheath

Cut 2 long strips of duct tape and roll one strip into your survival knife with the sticky end facing outside. Then, roll the other strip into your knife with the sticky end facing inside this time and now you have a protective sheath for your handy knife.

11- Added Insulation for Boots

Use a silver colored duct tape for this hack. Cut several strips of duct tape and place it inside your boots (with the silver side facing your foot). The silver side will reflect your own body heat and effectively insulate your lower extremities in the process.

12- Makeshift Cup

Use a plastic bottle or other container to be the mold in this hack. Cut 2 long strips of duct tape and roll one strip onto the plastic bottle (about 1/3 of it covered including the ‘butt’ portion of the plastic bottle) with the adhesive facing outside. Next, put the other strip with the adhesive facing the inside so it will bond with the sticky part of the first strip. Attach the 2 strips carefully to avoid having holes then remove the makeshift cup from your plastic bottle mold and pour water to drink.

NOTE: If holes are found in your cup, simply cut short strips of duct tape to patch it up.

13- Makeshift Baseball Cap

Wearing of headgear is important as most of our body heat is released from the head. Use your head this time as the mold for this hack and follow the steps mentioned in making a duct tape cup (number 12). Once finished, get 2 thin twigs and tape them on parallel sides to create the brim. Then, cut a long strip of duct tape and spread it over the 2 twigs to create a shade to protect your eyes from the heat of the sun.

14- Spear

Get a long piece of wood and attach your survival knife on one end with the use of duct tape. This is great for spear fishing and for long range hunting.

15- Wound Protection

If you ran out of plastic bandages to use, simply cut a strip of duct tape and pour alcohol on the adhesive part (don’t worry as this won’t affect the stickiness of the tape) and place it on the wounded area to protect it from infection.

16- Fly Trap

Cut a strip of DT about 4 meters long and roll it with the adhesive side facing outside. The finished product will produce about 2 meters of rolled tape which is more or less half the original length of the DT strip. Then, place one end on top of your shelter and attach a piece of wood at the other end. This is a good way to catch pesky flies which are out to bother you the whole evening.

Another advantage of making this project is you’ll be able to catch or control these insects without using any pesticides or chemicals which can be harmful to the environment. This makeshift DT fly trap can last for up to 2 days. Make sure to discard it properly once you leave the area.

17- Improvised Belt

Do your pants keep on falling on your way to your new bug-out location? If this is becoming a problem to you, then all you need is a piece of duct tape to make a belt out of.

The first thing you have to do is to measure your own waist line so you will be able to determine the length of tape you are going to need. Just remember to give a bit of allowance so you can adjust the tightness of the belt if needed. Then, cut the DT strip you are going to use and fold it lengthwise (silver side facing out) to prevent the sticky part from ruining your pants. Then, insert the folded duct tape into your belt loops and cut a small strip to fasten both ends.

18- Hem for Jeans

Did you wear a long pair of pants in your survival trip? If you need to trim down the length of your pants so you can walk comfortably, all you need to do is cut it and make a new hem using duct tape. It’s very simple. All you need to do is to cut your pants to the desired length and fashion a strip of duct tape to form a hem and prevent your pants from untangling.

19- Makeshift String for Perimeter Lights

Lighting in your camp is important to provide illumination and to ward of wild animals from coming in at the same time. Cut a long strip of duct tape and twist it to form a rope. Then, attach all the light you have in equal distance and hang it above your camp. Now you will have perimeter lights to illuminate your area and keep you safe and secure until the morning comes.

20- Clothesline

Need to dry your garments? If you happen to run out of rope and the paracord in your para-saw bracelet is currently in use, then all you need to do is to cut a long strip of duct tape and shape it like a rope. Then, get 2 long poles and place it on the ground and then attach both ends of your duct tape rope to have a clothesline for your wet clothes. What’s great about this project is you are assured the rope will carry the weight of the heavy garments and won’t sag down over time.

21- Soft Cast

In the case someone has a broken arm or wrist, you can still make use of a duct tape to form a soft cast. To do this, prepare a roll of tissue paper and a roll of DT. First, cover the injured part with the roll of tissue paper and use it like a gauze bandage. Then, cover the broken part with your duct tape and keep covering until the injured part is properly casted. Get a piece of cloth and tie it around your arm to support the arm until you find a better way to treat the injury.

Check-out more ways to Tape Yourself up in an Emergency.

22- Shelter Camouflage

Need to conceal your campsite from intruders? Get a roll of duct tape and stretch out strips about the length of your tent and attach it outside (with sticky side up). Make sure the strips are placed securely from end to end and evenly so your cover will be effective. Then, gather fallen leaves and sprinkle it above your shelter. The DT will enable to “catch” the fallen leaves and conceal your shed in the process without having to worry about the wind blowing them off.

23- Knife Handle

If your survival knife unfortunately broke its handle, get 2 pieces of flat wood and shape it into a handle. Place the wood on both sides to cover the end of the blade and secure them with the use of DT (roll until firm) and your knife’s handle will be as good as new.

24- Lining for Clothes

Tape the openings of your clothes with the use of duct tape to prevent venomous insects and snakes from getting inside. This is very useful especially if you are walking in the jungle.

25- Repair Items & Supplies

Need to fix broken sunglasses, mend torn clothes, or re-attach straps of your bug out backpack? Just use your imagination and you can fix nearly anything with some  duct tape.

What other survival uses can you think of for duct tape? Let us know below…


Michael Martinmichael-martin

Michael Martin is a former Navy Pilot who believes no matter the circumstance, one should always be prepared. Upon entering the civilian world, Michael spent his time traveling the globe and observing different cultures. Growing up in as the son of a serial entrepreneur it was only a matter of time before he took his love of the outdoors and passion for helping others to new heights by founding Bug Out Bag Pro. As a survivalist & entrepreneur, his vision is to help educate and prepare families everywhere with the information, skills and tools to survive any situation they may face!

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