50 Survival Uses for Binder Clips

by Tommy Grant

One of the most critical survival skills you can develop is learning how to take random items around the home and reapply those items for different survival uses.

If you go into any room of your home, you’ll almost certainly be able to find items that will prove immensely valuable in a survival or disaster scenario if you have the knowledge of how to use them.

Most office spaces in particular are a treasure trove of such everyday items that can prove to be very valuable for survival. One of these items is a binder clip.

Here are fifty survival uses for binder clips:

Organize Cords

You can use binder clips to organize cords and strings together as well. Simply take your cordage and then fasten time together with a binder clip. This will help prevent knots while storing the cords in your pack.

Close Your Tent

If your tent flaps are blowing in the wind, seal them shut with the aid of binder clips.

Emergency Cufflinks

If you’re wearing a long sleeved shirt in a survival situation with loose or baggy arm sleeves that allow wind to get in and cool you down, you can use binder clips as ‘emergency cufflinks’ to keep the sleeves shut and tight around your arms.

Fastening Shelter

50 Survival Uses for Binder ClipsIn the office space, binder clips are used to fasten papers and binders together.

In a survival situation, they can be used to fasten things together as well.

For example, you can use binder clips to fasten pieces of cloth or cordages together thanks to its sturdy grip.

Mark Rocks

Remove the clip from a binder clip, and you can use it to etch or scratch markings on rocks.

Makeshift Tweezers

If you require tweezers for medical purposes, you can use binder clips as the next best thing.

Button Replacement

Use a binder clip to replace a missing button on a shirt or jacket.

Zipper Replacement

As awkward as it may sound, if your pants zipper ceases working you can use a binder clip as the next best thing to keep your zipper shut.

Make a Finger or Toe Splint

It’s not the most pleasant use for a binder clip, but it may be necessary in a medical emergency.

If you break a finger or toe, you can use the binder clip to secure the broken appendage in place by clamping the fastener over the injury and then wrapping it around with cloth.

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It will be painful, but it will keep the injured finger or toe in place until you can seek professional medical help.

Make a Compass

50 Survival Uses for Binder ClipsA binder clip can’t be used as a compass on its own, but you can modify one so that it can be.

Simply remove the metal wire from the clip, and then readjust it to straighten it out into a needle. Run the needle along the metal blade of a knife to magnetize it.

Then place the needle on a leaf that you float in a cup of water. The needle will point into the north-south direction.

Attach Gear to Your Backpack

This one is pretty self-explanatory. Simply fasten items to the exterior of your backpack using binder clips.

Weight for Fishing Line

Simply snap the binder clips directly over your fishing line, and they will act as a weight.

Fishing Bobber

On that same note, you can attach a binder clip to a fishing line to act as a bobber. A colored clip would likely work best.

Phone Stand

If you ever have a need for a phone stand in a survival situation, you can bend a binder clip and it will hold a phone upright. Using two or three binder clips together would be best.

Test the Strength of a Battery

Clasp two binder clips onto the ends of a battery. Then pull the wires out and extend them until they touch one another. If there is a spark, the battery is functional.

Lock Picker

If you have any knowledge on how to pick locks, you can use the metal wire from a binder clip in this task.

Make Fishing Hooks

50 Survival Uses for Binder ClipsRemove the metal wire from the clip, and then readjust it into the shape of a hook.

Sharpen one of the ends with your knife, and then fasten it onto your shoelaces, vine, or cordage to make a fishing line.

Related: Survival Hacks From The Civil War That Are More Useful Than Ever

Make Toothpicks

You can also remove the metal wire from a binder clip to make a toothpick. Just make sure you sterilize the wire by boiling it in water first.

Hang Wet Clothes

If you don’t have a clothespin, you can use a binder clip as the next best thing to hang up your clothes to dry.


If you don’t have a hairpin, you can use a binder clip as the next best thing as well.

Repair Holes in Tents and Tarps

If you have any holes in tents or tarps that will allow moisture or wind through, simply clamp them shut with binder clips.

Repair Holes in Clothing

All the same, you can use binder clips to repair holes in your clothes as well.

Fasten Items to Your Pants

If you have any items or tools that you’d like to carry on your waist for ease-of-access but don’t have a belt, you might be able to fasten them using binder clips.

Emergency Scraper

Believe it or not, you can use binder clips to scrape ice from glass and other surfaces. It won’t be nearly as effective as an actual ice scraper and will cover a smaller surface area, but it can be done.

Pant Straps

50 Survival Uses for Binder ClipsYou can use binder clips for any loose or baggy pants you’re wearing in cold weather as well. Simply tighten the ends of your pants nearly the ankles shut so they can keep the cold air out.

Related: 22 Prepper Tips From The Homeless

Repair Suspenders

If you have a pair of suspenders that break, you can use binder clips as the fasteners.

Hold Up A Hammock

You can use binder clips to help fasten the cords of a hammock around a tree.

Keep Socks Together

When stashing spare pairs of socks together in your backpack, you can hold a pair together with a binder clip.

Close Your Pockets

If you stash items in your pockets but they’re at risk of falling out while you’re on the move, simply clasp the pockets shut with binder clips.

Crafting Arrows

When crafting makeshift arrows and gluing on the features, you can use binder pins to hold the feathers in place while you are gluing them.

Bundle Kindling Together

You can bundle kindling together (such as moss, twigs, or pine needles) with binder clips before stashing them away in your pack.

Keep Seeds in Packets

If you open up a packet of seeds but aren’t ready to use them all at once, clasp the packets shut with a binder clip.

Food Sealer

50 Survival Uses for Binder ClipsIf you have any bags filled with food, you can use binder clips to seal them shut and protect the food.

Tube Sealant

If you lose the caps to tubes of toothpaste or other personal hygiene items, use binder clips to seal them shut.

Glasses Repair

You can use binder clips to hold the broken frames of glasses together. It may impair your vision slightly depending on where the fracture in the frames occurs, but it will keep them together in a jiffy.

Lamp or Lantern Holder

Tie a rope or paracord in the roof of your tent, and then use a binder clip to suspend a lamp or lantern directly over it.

Blade Protector

If you have a knife or another bladed tool that lacks a sheath, clasp binder pins around the blade to help protect it.

Improvised Self-Defense Weapon

Pull out the metal wire from a binder clip and try to sharpen the ends to a point. You can use it as an impromptu close-quarters self-defense weapon.

Make a Signal Flag

Fasten a brightly colored piece of cloth to a stick with the aid of binder clips and then use it as a signal.

Build a Makeshift Poncho

If you have any plastic sheeting or cloth you can use as a makeshift poncho, you can fasten the sides with binder clips to help protect you from the rain.

Roll Up Blankets and Mats

When rolling up sleeping bags, blankets, tarps, or mats, you can use binder clips to stop them from rolling back out.

Water Collection

50 Survival Uses for Binder ClipsA classic water collection survival trick is to take a plastic bag or sack and wrap it around the green branches of a bush or tree. Then allow water condensation to collect in the bag. You can fasten the bag using a binder clip.

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Leaving Messages

If you need to leave notes, messages, or directions for other people, write the message on a piece of paper and then fasten it to a bush or a branch out in the open with a binder clip.

Clamp a Tourniquet

If you need to use a cloth or a shirt as a makeshift tourniquet, you can fasten it tightly around the site of the injury with binder clips.

Replace the Tip of a Shoelace

If the plastic tip of your shoelace falls off, you can clamp the end of the shoelace shut with a binder clip so it won’t unravel.

Keep Your Belt in Place

If your belt buckle breaks, use binder clips to fasten the ends of the belt together.

Trail Marker

Simply fasten your binder clips to branches to mark your trail as you move along. Colored binder clips would work best for this.

Make a Belt Out of Cordage

Alternatively, you can create a makeshift belt via cordage. Tie the ends of the cords tightly together, and then add further security by fastening them with binder clips.

Seal a Wet Wipes Bag

If you have wet wipes in your survival kit or bug out bag, it’s very important to ensure the bag remains tightly sealed so the wipes don’t dry out. Binder clips can be used nicely for this purpose.

Bartering Items

In the event of an economic catastrophe, many everyday items will suddenly become precious commodities for trade. Normal office supplies, including binder clips, may be among those items.

Holding Documents Together

Last but not least, this is one of the original uses for binder clips in the first place. Outside of the office space, you can still use binder clips for their intended purpose in a disaster scenario.

Since there are so many survival uses for binder clips like we’ve covered above, it may not actually be a bad idea to stash a few in your bug out bag or survival kit.

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