Do you use rechargeable batteries? Although I have a large inventory of traditional Alkaline batteries, my go-to batteries are rechargeable Panasonic eneloops or those from Amazon Basics (which I have heard are Eneloops in disguise). I must have three dozen of these batteries, separated into two sections of my drawer, charged and not charged.
A few nights ago, my favorite flashlight was getting dim so I went to my trusty drawer and oh my goodness, not a charged battery in sight.
Since I own lots of flashlights as well as Alkaline batteries, this was not a big deal. On the other hand, note to self: keep the stash of rechargeable batteries charged! Although I do have a solar battery charger (this one from Goal Zero), in normal times it is much quicker to plug a charger into the wall socket and charge them up the old fashioned way.
The nice thing about the Panasonic eneloops or the Amazon clone, is that once charged, there is hardly a smidgen of power loss, even if they sit in a drawer for a year. So really, there is no excuse for my failure to have my rechargeables prepped.
With that being said, the Survival Buzz tip of the week is to charge your batteries and keep them that way! Don’t get caught with a bunch of dead batteries!
And, by the way, you can also recharge alkaline batteries with the right type of charger. I wrote about this years ago, and if anything, the Maximal Power charger has gotten better, delivering very few leakers or other failures. Read How to Recharge Alkaline Batteries.
Dealing with a Winter Cold, Cough, and Congestion
In other news, Shelly picked up a very bad cold last week along with a lingering cough and nasty congestion. Other than using my DIY Cold and Flu Bomb as a preventative for myself, I did a bit of research on which essential oils to use to mitigate his annoying cough.
Much my surprise, one of the recommended oils was Cedarwood, something I had a bottle in my kit. What I did is mix 1/2 ounce of Simple Salve (although you could use any carrier oil, even plain coconut oil) with 30 drops of Cedarwood essential oil. For those of you that care about such things, 1/2 ounce of carrier is approximately equal to 3 teaspoons. This makes up a 10% dilution.
Long story short, I rubbed the diluted Cedarwood oil over his neck and upper chest and within minutes the cough subsided. I was and am amazed. My recommendation is that the next time you shop for essential oils, pick up some Cedarwood. It is a very inexpensive oil and can also be used for other purposes such as dandruff control and as an insect repellant.
Prepare Your Family for Survival: Tip #5
Here are this week’s prep tips from Linda Loosli’s recently published a book, Prepare Your Family For Survival.
Chapter 5 – First Aid: Medical Preparedness
Tip: Regularly check the expiration dates on all first-aid ointments and over-the-counter products that will lose their potency after a period of time and replace them as needed.
Tip: Aim to have on hand at least an extra month’s supply of contact lenses and cleaning solution (or an extra pair of glasses), sunscreen, birth control, whatever personal items you use on a regular basis.
For more about the book, visit the article 11 Ways to Prepare Your Family for Survival.
Current Backdoor Survival Giveaways
Read the review and enter to win a fantastic LifeStraw Steel!
With all giveaways, winners are notified by email and have 48 hours to claim their prize or an alternate will be selected. Once selected, the names of winners are also displayed in the Rafflecopter on the original giveaway article. This usually happens on the Thursday or Friday following the end of the giveaway.
2016 Home Grown Food Summit – Coming Soon
Some of you may remember that last Spring, Marjory Wildcraft organized a free, online Home Grown Food Summit. This year she is back with an all new, 2016 Home Grown Food Summit. The summit will be an online gathering of over 30 experts in backyard food production, homesteading, and off-grid living. Highlights this year include amazing presenters on composting, beekeeping, and herbal medicine.
The dates for this event are March 7 to March 13 and registration is now open. I will be providing you with more details in the next week or two but in the meantime, here is a link for additional information or to register.
The Final Word
It has been quite some time since I have heard about your preps. I just know in my heart of hearts that you have been doing more than sitting around the fire this winter sipping hot chocolate (although that sounds pretty darn good right now).
Tell me: what did you do to prep this week?
Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!
Bargain Bin: Here are the items mentioned in today’s article.
Panasonic eneloop AA New 2100 Cycle Ni-MH Pre-Charged Rechargeable Batteries: These days, I try to use eneloops as much as possible. They hold a charge forever – or so it seems – and work well in flashlights and small electronics. Note: I also use the Amazon Basics brand and will purchase those if the price is less. I have done a lot of reading and to the best of my knowledge, they are an eneloop twin, branded by Amazon. They charge up fine in my Maximal Power battery charger (see below).
Cedarwood Essential Oil: I get mine from Spark Naturals because I believe in the company and the quality of their oils. You get 10% off with discount code “BackdoorSurvival”. I have also been dabbling with essential oils from Plant Therapy and while not as fresh smelling as Spark Naturals, they are a good value for the budget minded.
Coast HP1 Focusing LED Flashlight: This flashlight is more expensive than some of the MiniCrees out there. On the other hand, it is a bit slimmer and lighter. Where it really excels though is in brightness and range. I actually prefer it and carry it with me when venturing out at night.
Amprobe BAT-250 Battery Tester: I do not know anyone that is sorry they purchased or gifted an inexpensive battery tester. Mine sits in my desk drawer and is used 3 or 4 times a week. This newer version is an upgrade from the BAT-200 and well worth the additional dollar in cost. I especially like the redesigned side cradle that holds batteries securely in place during testing – no more erratic battery readings from movement off contacts.
Maximal Power FC999 Universal Battery Charger: This nicely built charger will charge charge AA, AAA, C, D, N, 9V, Ni-MH, Ni-CD, and Alkaline batteries. It has an LED display so that when you first put a battery in the charging bay, you know whether it is viable for charging or simply bad and ready to go back to the recycle box.
Yes it really works, even under solar power. Read about in this article: How to Recharge Alkaline Batteries.
Sunferno Flintstone Portable Solar Panel with Rechargeable Battery Pack: This sturdy solar power pack is lightweight and small enough to be used in an EDC kit. I especially like that it has 2 USB ports.
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