Almost as important to camping as s’mores ingredients and comfortable camping chairs, duct tape is a must-have when enjoying the great outdoors! This versatile tape works to repair and secure almost anything, so bring along a roll the next time you head out into the wilderness. You’ll be glad you did, because duct tape fixes everything!
Why Duct Tape Works
Invented during WWII, the original use for duct tape was to seal ammo boxes and keep out moisture. It was constructed of a layer of mesh duck cloth between the backing and the adhesive, which made it strong and watertight. In fact its watertight capabilities are what gave it its name. It was originally called duck tape, as it repelled water like a duck’s feathers. The design of it was altered over time and today it is now made of a cotton mesh which allows it to stretch a bit more and it can be torn easily to fit any sized project. Its flexibility helps it stay stuck even when stressed and ensures a good seal on pretty much any surface. When soldiers returned from WWII with duck tape, it quickly became a popular adhesive and was primarily used to connect heating ducts, hence its new name of duct tape.
Fixing the RV
There are plenty of things you can fix or alter in your RV with duct tape. Make sure you have a roll of duct tape in your RV tool kit when you hit the road on your next adventure. Here are just a few uses we’ve found for the sticky stuff!
The rubber roofing of an RV can sometimes crack, which can lead to leaks. If you can’t get your RV into a service center right away to get it fixed, get out your roll of duct tape and put it to good use. A piece of duct tape stretched over the crack will not only keep moisture from getting in, but it can potentially keep the crack from spreading and becoming an even bigger problem. For helpful tips on maintaining your RV’s roof, click here!
Vent covers don’t always fit perfectly, and sometimes they can sustain damage. If you find that yours aren’t in stellar condition or fitting properly, use some duct tape to fix this! Just run a piece around the base and over any cracks and you’re back in business!
Remove Pet Hair
If your RV adventures include your furry friends, then you probably live with pet hair inside your RV. Pet hair can be vacuumed up, but for the hairs that get tangled and wrapped into cushions or bedding, use a piece of duct tape to pull them off. Simple turn a piece inside out, secure the ends together, and pat your furniture and bedding with the sticky side to pull the hairs out. Want to make a DIY sticky pet hair brush? Wrap the tape inside out around a paint roller and you have a giant roller to get rid of that pesky hair!
Sometimes you may end up parking your RV in a campground with poor air quality. Maybe there’s dust and dirt swirling in the air from RV’s traveling by on a gravel road or a wind storm is stirring up dust and it’s ending up inside your RV. Use duct tape to create a DIY air filter by taking a box fan and duct taping a furnace filter to the back of it. The fan pulls the air through the filter and cleans it for you. Aaahhh, breathe it in!
Even if you just have your RV’s door open for a second, you’re bound to get a fly inside buzzing around and landing everywhere, including on your food! Yikes! And no matter how much you swat at it, you always just narrowly miss it! Outsmart these little buggers with a sticky piece of duct tape that looks like the perfect landing strip. Make a loop of inside out duct tape and hang it from the ceiling in your RV. As flies land on it, they get stuck and the buzzing stops! It’s up to you what you do with them. This fly trap is natural and inexpensive. For other natural insect repellents that really work, read this!
At home, a lot of people hide a key somewhere around their house for use in case they lose or forget their house key and find themselves locked out. It’s a good idea to do this for your RV too. You can duct tape an extra key somewhere that most people wouldn’t think to look, such as under a camping chair, on the awning, or anywhere else that most people wouldn’t think to look. Just tape it in place until you need it. You may want to bring it back inside before you take off to your next destination though, or you could end up hundreds of miles away from your key.
Hiking & Camping
You want to be prepared for anything when you’re out in the middle of nowhere, and nothing prepares you quite like duct tape! If you don’t want to carry the entire roll, you can wrap some around items you will have with you anyway such as a flashlight or a lighter. It will definitely come in handy!
Waterproof Your Shoes
When you’re in the great outdoors, you should be prepared for any type of weather, including rain. If you find yourself in wet conditions without the proper footwear, use duct tape to quickly turn your average hiking boots or shoes into waterproof ones! Wrap your duct tape around your footwear where water will seep in and get your socks wet and voila … you’ll enjoy dry, warm feet. But next time, consider investing in some wet-ready footwear so cold, wet feet are one less thing you have to worry about.
Marking Your Path
If you’re feeling particularly adventurous and want to go off the beaten path, great! Just don’t get lost! One way to avoid this is by marking your trail with duct tape. As you hike through the woods, just place an X of duct tape on trees as you pass them. When it’s time to turn around and head back, just follow your Xs and you’ll find yourself back at your starting point! Practice the Leave No Trace principle though and remove the Xs as you walk by them so you leave the woods as you found them.
Tents are lightweight, portable, and relatively easy to set up and fold down. But sometimes the lightweight material can let you down. Tents can rip easily from branches and other sharp objects, but it’s nothing that a little (or big) piece of duct tape can’t fix! It will hold well and keep the critters out while you sleep! You can use this same fix-it method if you have a tent door that is being stubborn and not wanting to close all the way. Just run duct tape across where the zipper is and it’ll hold the door shut for you!
Repairing Sleeping Bags
Sleeping bags can become victims of tears too. A sleeping bag with a rip in it won’t keep you very warm and the filling is apt to start falling out when it’s transported. Cover that hole with duct tape until you can sew it up and you’re good to go!
When you spend any time in the great outdoors, you’re surrounded by long sticks, rocks, pricker bushes, bugs, poisonous plants, and more. And if you’re traveling with children, they’re bound to trip and fall and scrape their knees or hurt their hands. Accidents happen, and you want to be prepared when they do. Again, duct tape can be put to good use when little boo boos happen, so make sure you have some with you!
If you get a cut while you’re out hiking, wrap it in duct tape. This will help keep dirt and germs out of it and will keep it from tearing even more. Once you get back to your first aid kit at camp or your home, bandage it properly. And once you do bandage it properly, a thin layer of duct tape over the bandage will add an additional layer of waterproofing to it.
Walking and hiking can cause blisters, especially if you’re wearing new or improper shoes. If you happen to get a blister, cover it with duct tape and put the shoes back on. The tape will help keep the shoes from rubbing on it and making it worse.
If you think you have a broken or sprained arm and want to put it in a sling while you’re on the way to seek medical treatment, use duct tape and toilet paper for this. Just wrap your hand and arm in toilet paper, then in duct tape, and then bring the tape up and around your shoulder to secure it.
The uses of duct tape are endless! From repairing your RV to securing broken bones, duct tape really does it all! Do you have some ingenious uses for duct tape? Let us know how you use it in the comments!