When you are prepping for a potential crisis or disaster you want to make sure that you do it right. There are too many potential variables that could be all the difference between life and death if you are not careful. One of the most important things that you can do while prepping is ensuring that you work with a budget that allows you to get what you need while leaving room for additional necessary purchases.
However, a serious emergency is not the time to discover that all of the money saving tactics that you employed ended up shooting you in the foot.
Here are some mistakes that you don’t want to make.
Having A Crappy First Aid Kit
One of the biggest mistakes that many preppers will make in the quest to save as much money as possible is that of buying what they think is a one size fits all first aid kit that will serve their every need. The truth is that a basic first aid kit is all well and good but they are certainly not sufficient for a major disaster. They are more appropriate for smaller problems or using while you wait for professional medical help to arrive.
If you want to have the best possible first aid kit to suit your needs then you are best off building one up entirely from scratch. You need to research what components are absolutely necessary for a great first aid kit.
Then, you need to expand on that list to include the items that are specific to your needs. This includes considering the needs of anyone who may be joining you during a crisis. Get brands that you trust and know are good quality while also understanding that in most cases generic versions will work as well.
TL;DR: Some first aid kits are sufficient, but if you really want an awesome one, build it from scratch yourself with high quality components. A bad situation is no time to have crappy bandages that won’t stick.
Having Crappy Batteries
A sad fact of the world that we live in is that not all batteries are created equally. In fact there are a lot of batteries on the market that are pretty poor. You want to avoid ultra cheap batteries altogether. These might be fine when you have ready access to a store but when you are looking for pure performance for a reasonable price they should be avoided like the plague.
Typically the name brand batteries are going to be what you want, such as Duracell, Energizer, Panasonic, or maybe even Rayovac. They may be more expensive, with some costing nearly double that of the more affordable options, but if you want superior performance this is a scenario in which you need to just eat the cost and reap the benefits.
TL;DR: Don’t buy cheap-o batteries!
Not Having A Multipurpose Flashlight
If you are placed in a situation where flashlights are a necessity then the last thing you need is to have a flashlight that is unreliable. We all know what a cheap flashlight looks and feels like. Its parts rattle around. It is cheap and plastic in feeling and material. It features a crappy bulb and focusing lens. Avoid cheap flashlights and opt for a more heavy duty option that can be used as a self-defense weapon. You will be glad you did hen the chips (and the power) are down.
TL;DR: Buy a quality flashlight made of sturdy materials that you can use for self-defense.
Not Having A Great Knife
Your knife is the most basic tool you will have at your disposal in a survival situation and it isn’t the kind of item that you need to go cheap on because a cheap knife will perform poorly, maybe even break when you need it the most. Make sure you have a quality knife made of carbon steel paired with a whet stone. Skip stainless steel knives; they may not rust, but they don’t hold an edge like a good carbon blade will.
Do NOT used a knife sharpener on a high quality knife. This is not how you get a knife to hold an edge. Learn to use a whet stone instead.
TL;DR: Get a quality knife made of carbon steel, not stainless steel. No knife sharpener; use a whet stone.
Not Having Multiple Fire Starters
You always need to have more than one way to start a fire. I personally keep at least 3 different ways to start one on my bag at all times, because I never know which one I might need for which situation.
You should have:
- A torch lighter (with extra fluid)
- A magnesium fire starter
- A Swedish firesteel
The moral of the story is that if you are truly prepping for a disaster or crisis the last thing you need to is cut corners that should not be cut. Saving money is important and it is a key survival skill in this day and age but it should never come at the cost of being ill prepared with shoddy equipment and tools.