Duct tape is probably one of the most versatile items around your home and wherever possible, it's a good idea to have a roll lying around. Usually manufactured by companies like 3M and Gorilla Glue, it's strong, waterproof, and you can basically use it for anything, meaning it's great for DIY fixes and simple hacks that'll make your life a lot easier. There are videos out there of people making entire boats using nothing but duct tape. So, we've compiled a list of some of the most inventive uses for duct tape we could find.
Wrap Tools For Extra Grip
If you've ever worked a job that required a bit of elbow grease, then you've likely come across a pair of pliers or some other tool wrapped in duct tape. Some handles on things like pliers or wrenches can be hard to get a grip on or just downright uncomfortable. So, try wrapping your handles in duct tape for a little extra comfort. Duct tape can also be used to replace rubber handles entirely if they are damaged or come off.
The next time you're at a store buying new tools, pick up some 3M tape and just keep it in your toolbox or truck in case you ever need it.
Make A DIY Pet Hair Remover
We all love our furry friends, but that doesn't mean we have to love their hair being everywhere. You could use an overpriced pet hair remover or a lint roller to get that pet hair off your furniture, but there's a much better and cheaper way. Just take a paint roller and wrap it up in some duct tape with the sticky side out. The duct tape should do a pretty good job of getting rid of that pesky pet hair.
It'll also save you some money and cut down on waste as you can basically use it as many times as you need to as long as you have some more duct tape.
Repair Broken Glasses
Accidentally breaking your glasses is never a recipe for a nice day, but at least there is a way to temporarily fix them until you can get to the store and buy a new pair. If your frame has broken, you can take some duct tape and carefully wrap the two broken ends together. The duct tape should hold your glasses firmly in place for the time being and allow you to keep doing whatever it is you were doing.
If it's a particularly long time until you can make it to the store then you might have to unwrap and then rewrap once a week or so until you can get a new pair.
Protect Your Floors
If you've gone out and spent a lot of money on beautiful wood floors, then the last thing you want is for them to immediately get scratched up by chairs or office furniture. Keep your wood floors as beautiful as you can for as long as you can using duct tape. Just wrap the wheels of your chairs or the feet of your desk in duct tape and it should prevent scratches.
It might impair your ability to roll around a bit, but it beats tearing up your floors. This little hack also works for other items around your home, such as tables and end tables.
Cover Up Blisters
You should always take a roll of duct tape with you when you're out on the trail or off camping. It's just too handy not to have with you and here's a good example of how it can save you a lot of pain. If you get a blister while hiking, a band-aid isn't really going to help as your shoes are just going to rub the band-aid off your feet and expose your blister.
Instead, cover your blister up with some duct tape. It'll stay on and keep your blister from getting worse. You can also just use duct tape as a preventive measure if you're worried about your shoes rubbing up against your heel.
Make A DIY Notebook Cover
We're suckers for a good notebook. But, sometimes it's nice to have a cover that helps keep other items, like pen and paper organized and within reach. Making a notebook cover out of duct tape is a great way to do this. Not only does it help organize your writing tools, but you can still see that beautiful notebook through the cover. It's also super simple and quick to make.
If you want to take things a step further, you can use patterned duct tape to give your cover some more character. A lot of companies, such as 3M, sell patterned duct tape.
Make It Easier To Sweep Debris Into Your Dustpan
You might not need to do this every time you go to sweep, but it is nice when you want to make sure you get any dangerous debris, such as glass off the floor. Whenever you're trying to sweep up the glass, you can use duct tape to secure your dustpan to your floor. This will keep the dustpan in place, and also make it much easier to sweep into since you've basically created a little ramp for debris.
Once your dustpan is secured, you can basically leave the dustpan in place and sweep around it. This is also nice if your dustpan has a rubber lip that's damaged or missing.
Make Your Own Hammock
One of the greatest things about summer — and pretty much any season that isn't winter — is relaxing on a hammock and enjoying a good book or just staring up at the sky. And if you have a little duct tape at the house, you can make your own. Just overlap different colored duct tape, wrap the ends around two rods, and then tie your rope to the ends of the rods.
The duct tape should be more than strong enough to hold your weight, and it's much cheaper than going to the store and buying a hammock that'll probably break within a couple of months.
Always Be Prepared With A DIY Stretcher
Hopefully, you'll never need to use a stretcher, but if you do find yourself in need of one then remember you can make a stretcher out of duct tape. The pattern you'll need to make is pretty simple, and all you need is duct tape and two lightweight rods. From there, it's just a matter of storing it somewhere in your home and hoping that you'll never have to use it.
This is also a handy DIY hack to keep in mind if you're ever out camping and someone injured themselves to the point that they can no longer walk on their own.
Strap A Filter To Your Box Fan
This is a really ingenious hack to help improve air quality, especially if you're living somewhere that's a bit drier and your box fan stirs up dirt and dust. If you're using a box fan to keep cool during the summer, then consider strapping an air filter to the front of it using some duct tape. This will ensure that any air circulating through your fan is being filtered and is clean enough to breathe.
All you need for this hack, is some duct tape, a box fan, and a cheap air filter, which can be found at most stores that sell home improvement equipment.
Patch Up Your Plane Before Takeoff
This DIY tip is not for the risk-averse. If you have a small plane, and for some reason, that plane needs slight repairs, you can actually use duct tape to make some repairs before takeoff. Duct tape should be strong enough to get you to where you need to go. However, maybe don't let your passengers see you patching up your plane with duct tape as it's not really a confidence booster.
Also, make sure to get actual repairs done when you land as duct tape is strong, but we wouldn't recommend using it for more than one flight at a time.
Help Your Tree Heal
Another ingenious hack, this one involves using duct tape to help your tree or plant heal its branch. The next time a strong storm breaks one of your tree's branches, you can wrap it up in duct tape and leave it until it heals. It's really kind of similar to what we do when a person breaks something like an arm or a leg. However, you might want to put a cloth or bandage between the duct tape and the outside of your plant so that the tape comes off easily later on.
Still, this is a great way to ensure that your tree doesn't start looking a little bare on one side, especially if it's a fruit tree or a flowering plant.
A Mobile Cup Holder
We love this hack for its sheer simplicity. If for some reason you find yourself in a car or truck without a cup holder, or you're just out somewhere and need something to hold your drink in place, then just stick it in a roll of duct tape. A large role of 3M duct tape should be perfect for holding coffee cups, bottles, or smaller thermoses. Of course, you'll need a larger roll in order for this to work.
However, if you've taken our advice on some of the other items on this list, then you should already have a roll of duct tape sitting in your car for emergencies.
Patch Up Some Boots
If you wear boots to work, then you likely know how quickly they can ruin. However, that doesn't mean you have to walk around in a pair of boots dotted with holes. Instead, use some duct tape to quickly patch them up until you can go out and buy a new pair. The duct tape will also help to weatherproof your boots, meaning if it's raining or snowing, duct tape will help keep your feet dry.
That said, this is just a temporary fix and you should probably consider buying a new pair of boots before the safety officer sees that you've wrapped your feet up in duct tape.
Make Your Own Luggage Tags
Keep track of your luggage by crafting your own luggage tags. Yes, you could buy tags, but why spend money when it's easy to make your own that are usually more durable and look just as good? Just take some duct tape — preferably in a color or pattern you like — and start folding and wrapping. These custom luggage tags should hold up much better than anything you can buy in the store.
3M and some other brands sell duct tape in different colors and patterns, and they can be found at most hardware stores next to the more traditional silver rolls of duct tape.
Save Home Repair Seals
Most home repair seals and caulks are opened by cutting away the tip. We're not sure why, but it's probably a strategy to get you to buy a new tube every time you need to make some simple repairs. However, you can actually use duct tape to seal the tubes up and save them for the next time you need them. Simply wrap the area you cut away and store them wherever you store your tools.
If you want to be extra fancy, you can cut a small hole in the duct tape and hang your tubes as shown in this photo, but that's totally optional.
Turn Tape Into Wrapping Paper
We've all been there. You only have a couple of more presents to wrap when you suddenly find yourself all out of wrapping paper. Luckily, if you have some duct tape on hand, you can just use that to wrap up the remainder of the presents. Not only is it a really cool look, but you can still use any bows or different colored duct tape to decorate the wrapping.
Christmas colors aren't necessary here but do feel free to mix and match patterns. Plain silver duct tape also looks surprisingly good when used as wrapping paper.
DIY Outdoor Furniture
Since duct tape is so durable and it's also waterproof, you can use it in any outdoor furniture projects you have going on. It works particularly well when used as webbing in chairs. So, the next time you're out thrifting and you see some outdoor furniture that's missing fabric, just keep in mind that you can easily use duct tape instead of fabric. It's cheaper than taking items to get upholstered and it's often just as comfortable.
Just pick up some duct tape on your way home and weave the tape together to create a comfortable and durable seat. You can also mix and match colors if you don't want the silver look shown here.
Make Your Own Duct Tape Cup
Being on a job site with nothing to drink out of can be bad, especially if it's a particularly hot day. In fact, being anywhere and not having a cup can be a problem in a lot of situations. Luckily, that roll of 3M tape in your pack can actually be used to make a cup. Duct tape is waterproof, so anything you pour into it is sure to stay there and not spill.
Use it to fill from the cooler or when you're at a big game and want to pour yourself a bit harder than water. Making your own cup out of duct tape is also handy for when you're camping.
Quickly Repair A Tire
Did we mention how useful it is to store duct tape in your vehicle? This is why. If you're driving and accidentally hit something that punctures one of your tires, you can use duct tape to temporarily seal up any leaks and get you to a tire shop. Just identify where the leak is and carefully cover it up with duct tape, making sure the tape is as flush with the tire as possible.
The tape should hold long enough for you to make it to a gas station or tire repair shop and get either a proper repair or a brand new tire.
Open Jars With Duct Tape
When trying to use pure strength or a shirt to open stubborn jars fails, try breaking out the duct tape. The leverage it gives you is often enough to get the lids off most jars. First, wrap the lid you're trying to get off with duct tape and fold the top half back in on the top of the jar. Next, pull the tape counterclockwise while holding the jar firmly in place.
This should allow you to get some more leverage on the jar and get that lid off without too much of a fuss. If at this point the duct tape doesn't work, then you just might have to break the jar.
Hem Up Clothing
Sewing is certainly a nice skill to have, but if you don't know how to hem, you can still quickly hem items like pants or skirts using duct tape. The best part is that duct tape isn't particularly uncomfortable and if you do it right, then nobody should be able to tell that you have duct tape on the inside of your pants or shorts. However, this is just a temporary fix.
Whenever you get a chance you should take your clothes to a tailor and quickly get them hemmed up, but duct tape should last you until that point.
Craft A Charging Port
This little DIY project is great for when you find yourself stuck in a building or if you simply don't have anywhere to place your phone at home while it's charging. Just take some duct tape and fold it over into a tiny pocket for your phone and you have a place to securely charge your phone and keep it from getting stepped on. Plain silver duct tape works here as well.
However, if you really want to take it up a step, you can find a pattern or color you like and craft your own custom charging port out of duct tape.
Make Your Own Boat
People often say that boats are money pits. However, that's usually just because the engines and fiberglass constantly need to be maintained and repaired. Making your own boat out of duct tape will save you some money and still allow you to hit the water in a safe manner. However, you're going to need quite a few rolls of duct tape and somewhere safe to test your new craft before you take it to the lake, river, or sea.
If you do spot any leaks while testing then just cover them with some more duct tape and you're good to go. It might also be wise to bring a roll with you while you're out just in case any issues arise.
Customized Pencil Bags
Remember those brightly colored pencil bags from school? Those were great for keeping things organized. And you can make your own with only a couple of simple items. Just take a zip lock bag and wrap it in different colored duct tape or in different patterns to create something similar to the bags pictured here. Now, whether you want to share your pencils with classmates is up to you, but at least you have a cool, custom bag to show off.
A couple of different companies sell duct tape in different patterns, including companies like 3M, and you should be able to find them at most DIY and crafts stores.
Turn Duct Tape Into Stencils
Store-bought stencils are usually pretty cheap, but sometimes it's hard to find exactly what you want. Luckily, duct tape can be used as a stencil. Just arrange your tape into whatever pattern or design you like and spray away. After you remove the duct tape, you'll be left with a beautiful stenciled design. This works particularly well with shirts and it works excellently on flat, hard surfaces such as walls or fences.
If you have a sharp blade, you can also just lay down a layer of duct tape and cut away a design using your blade. Just be careful if you're cutting on top of a shirt.
Use Duct Tape In Case Of Emergencies
Duct tape is a great item to have while you're out camping and this is why. Duct tape can be used to cover wounds that might need more than just a simple band-aid. It's more rugged and it'll stick much better. You can also use it to make a splint if someone has severely hurt their arms and need support. Just wrap the arm in duct tape and remember to save a piece long enough to wrap around their neck.
You an also make a stretcher out of duct tape, which is mentioned in more detail in a different item on the list. Put simply, duct tape can be a lifesaver.
Create Your Own Bags
Duct tape is extremely strong, which is one of the reasons people use it for so many different things. It's also one of the reasons duct tape makes an excellent material for crafting your own bags. Bags made out of duct tape are sure to last much longer than most anything you can go and buy at a store. Just make sure to plan your bag's design out beforehand to make the whole process quicker.
Your bag doesn't have to be as complex as the one shown in this photo, but it is nice to switch up the patterns and colors a bit so that you have something unique to you.
Save A Turtle
Turtles are amazing creatures. And as humans, we seem particularly attached to turtles for some reason, even if we are sometimes running them over with our cars. Maybe it's their hard shell or their slow-moving nature. Either way, if you ever happen to come across a turtle in distress and with a broken shell, you can quickly hold the shell together using duct tape while you rush your new friend to the vet.
Once you get to the vet or a wildlife ranger, they should be able to help the little guy into a more permanent solution and fix their shell.
Make Roses That Won't Die
The different crafts you can make using duct tape are nearly limitless, but this is one of our favorites. You can make and gift roses that won't die using different patterned duct tape. Some of the roses in this photo are gorgeous, but you could also just use solid colors, such as yellow or red to craft your own roses. There are plenty of how-tos out there on the internet.
There are also plenty of different color combinations and some brands like 3M have entire product lines dedicated to those that want to make crafts using tape and other items.
Give Your Shoes Some More Grip
Sometimes you find yourself slipping a bit more than usual. And while we usually just chalk it up to us being a bit clumsy, if you find yourself slipping then odds are the grip on your shoes has started to wear away. If that happens then you can prevent slipping using duct tape. Just apply a couple of strips to the bottom of your shoes and make some light cuts in the tape.
This will add some more texture to the tape and further help prevent you from slipping, especially if it's wet outside or if the sidewalk happens to be frozen over.
Protect Yourself From Sandpaper
Whether you're a professional or just a DIYer who likes to take on larger projects, it's always a good idea to protect yourself when sanding. This is especially true the grittier the sandpaper and the larger the sander. To do so, just wrap your fingers in duct tape wherever you suspect there's a possibility of coming in contact with sandpaper. The duct tape should be strong enough to take any abuse from sandpaper.
It'll also keep your fingers from getting scratched up or suffering any severe injuries if a sander you're working with or your hands happen to slip while you're sanding.
Tape Up Your Windows
Hopefully, you never have to use this tip, but if you do then you'll be thankful that you have some duct tape on hand. If you ever run into anything large enough to crack your car's window, then quickly take some duct tape and tape up both sides of the window. This will keep the glass from shattering into tiny shards and hopefully keep the windshield intact until you can make it to a glass shop.
This same tip also works with the windows in your home. If you're expecting a strong storm or hurricane-force winds, then taping up windows with duct tape will prevent them from shattering into small shards.
Quick Bike Repairs And Mods
Biking without a light at night is dangerous in most places. Reflectors are nice, but sometimes you just want something a bit more. So, always try to keep a couple of flashlights and a roll of duct tape with you when you're out biking. If it gets late and you weren't expecting to stay out till dark, you can still ensure that you're safe by duct-taping flashlights or even Christmas lights to your bike.
Duct tape is also just great to have on you in case you ever need to make any small repairs while you're out biking. So throw it in your bag along with your other tools next time you go for a ride.
Use Duct Tape To Make A Belt
Forgetting to put on a belt can sometimes be like forgetting to bring your phone or wallet with you. The next time this happens and you're out on a job or you're somewhere that requires you to keep your pants from falling down, you can quickly make a belt out of duct tape. This DIY belt doesn't absolutely require rings at the ends, but they are nice to have.
Whether or not you want to make your belt out of a specific pattern is up to you. It's never going to look as good as your leather belt, but it will get the job done.
Fix Frayed Laces
One of the more common issues when it comes to shoelaces is when the plastic piece at the end breaks off and your shoelaces end up becoming frayed. To avoid this altogether, simply take some duct tape and carefully wrap the tips of your laces. If you use colored duct tape then nobody will be the wiser and your shoes will look good as new after you're done.
And even if all you have is silver duct tape, then this can help prevent your laces from fraying until you can get to the store and just buy a new pair.
Patch Up A Tent
A tent is your shelter from the elements when you're out. So, if it gets a hole in it, then you're probably going to be in for a long night. Everything from mosquitos to rain to snakes can make their way inside your tent when it's open. Don't let that happen. Instead, use that roll of duct tape you brought with you to quickly patch up any holes in your tent.
Not only will it keep out any creepy crawlies, but it'll also keep out the elements since duct tape is waterproof. The last thing you want is to have to go to bed wet and miserable.
Use Tape To Get The Most Out Of Your Toothpaste
There are two kinds of people in this world. Those that roll their toothpaste and those that squeeze the tube. If you're the former, then this simple hack is for you. You can use duct tape when you're rolling your toothpaste tube and help keep your rolls in place. This will prevent any toothpaste from going back to the bottom of the tube and it'll help your toothpaste last longer.
It'll also just look incredibly organized and help squeeze every last drop out of the tube. And even if you're not the kind of person who rolls up their toothpaste, then maybe this little hack could help you get going.
Make Bug Traps
If you've ever seen those strips of yellow paper used to catch flies then you probably know where we're going with this one. You can use duct tape to catch any pests you think might be crawling around your home at night. This is especially useful if you're not quite sure if you have an issue but want to scout out the situation anyway. Just lay a couple around your home before you go to bed at night.
Check your traps the next morning and if you've caught anything then that can help tell you if you need to call a professional exterminator to the house, or if you can rest easy at night.
Waterproof Pillows And Cushions
As we've said in a couple of other items on this list, one of the great things about duct tape is that it's waterproof. This means that you can use it to make waterproof cushions for your outdoor area. You could also just use it to waterproof any existing cushions or pillows you might have. However, you're going to be changing the look of your pillows in doing this, so why not just make your own with creative designs?
This is especially helpful for people who live in areas where summer showers might be a daily occurrence and you might not always have a chance to bring the cushions inside.