Matches & Lighters
In the event of a natural disaster or terrorist incident you may need fire for light and/or heat. There are a few inexpensive items that can be stored to insure that you have “fire” available.
Strike anywhere waterproof matches should be in your survival kit. Kitchen type regular wooden strike anywhere matches are a good start. You can purchase waterproof strike anywhere matches or make it a family project waterproofing your own. Kids will love doing this. It’s kinda like pioneer stuff. All it takes is a box of strike anywhere wooden matches, a block of preserve sealing paraffin, an old piece of Styrofoam from some item you may have ordered and an old small pot that you really won’t want to use again. If you don’t want to buy paraffin use the stub of an old candle that may be lying in the back of the kitchen drawer. Besides finding that piece of old candle, there’s no telling what other good stuff you might find in that kitchen drawer. A piece of candle only about 2 or 3 inches long is plenty.
Melt the paraffin or old candle in the pot. When completely melted, remove from the stove so the kids don’t burn themselves. Dip the head of a match straight down into the wax about 1/4 to 1/3 of an inch past the match head. You may have to tilt the pot to get enough wax depth. Careful, that pot is hot! Immediately remove the match and shake off any excess wax back into the pot. Turn the match right side up and stick the end, opposite the head, into the Styrofoam to cool. Make sure excess wax was shaken off so that none of it drips on your hand. When well cooled, store them in a zip-lock bag.
An alternative that is a little more modern is to buy a few smalle cigarette lighters. Get the type that have a visible liquid fuel inside and are not refillable. These lighters will give you many lights and if they get wet just dry them off and they still work fine. You also know when it is about out of fuel since you can see the fuel level in them.
Having some candles on hand is a great idea. A half dozen or more is a good start. Get the thick kind usually called “plumbers candles”. They last longer than fancy tabletop candles and they are usually a lot less expensive although be careful, they are not dripless.
Your matches, lighters and candles should all be stored in zip-loc bags.