Candles definitely come in handy in disaster prepping. But, did you know that there are many other household uses for candles and candle stubs? The next time you have some extra candles around, try using them in one of the following ways. You may just find a favorite use that you can incorporate into your WTSHTF prepping list.
Bugs can be a real problem both before, but especially after, a major disaster. To deter the bugs, make your own mosquito repellent. Melt any unscented candle stubs that you have, using a double boiler. If you are reluctant to use your regular kitchen pots, pick up a double boiler that is specifically made for candle making. You can find candle making supplies at larger craft stores.
When the candle stubs are melted, add in a portion of citronella oil, then pour the melted repellent into a heat resistant jar. You can add a wick and turn it into a candle, if you like, although the scent of your new repellent will deter the mosquitos almost as well.
Waterproofing for a Label
If you want to secure a label so the ink does not bleed, or to make it water resistant, simply use a candle or candle stub on it. Rub the wax over the label to protect it. This is a quick way to keep moisture from ruining your label. Make sure to use a pale or light colored candle. Otherwise the color in the wax may obscure your writing.
Make a Set of Homemade Fire Starters
You need only a very little bit of a candle to make an entire set of good, homemade fire starters. Melt a candle stub and dribble it over dry pine cones or small branches. Allow the wax to cool and harden. Store your new fire starters away, somewhere dry, and then toss a few your campfire, fireplace or wood stove. These fire starters will give you a quick start to your fire.
New shoelaces may be hard to find after disaster strikes, so try this easy trick when your laces fray to the point where you have trouble guiding them through your lace holes. Melt a bit of candle onto a small piece of aluminum foil. Dip the frayed end of the shoelace into the melted candle, and allow this way to cool slightly for a few seconds. Use your fingers to mold the wax into a point, and then allow it to cool completely. Genius, isn’t it? This is a great idea for saving money, too.
Prevent Snow and Ice Build Up
Protect your shovel and your back when you employ a candle or candle stub. Coat the edge of the shovel, and the snow and ice will slide right off. Reapply as often as needed. This makes shoveling after a winter storm easier and more efficient.