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Buying Guide

The best survival tech (2024)

Surviving a natural disaster comes down to preparedness. These essential survival tech items will all but ensure your survival.

Assorted portable outdoor and survival gear items.
Image: KnowTechie

So you’ve found yourself in a tropical zone during hurricane season, have you? Or are you stuck in a blizzard or the basement during a tornado? Well, you can ride it out without the appropriate survival gear or be prepared.

Many of us have lived through a natural disaster and can testify that the cost of being prepared is worth never having to use any survival tech.

So, you’ve got your home comfortable with a great smart thermostat and covered all the entry points with security cameras. But what happens when nature decides that it wants to upend your cozy existence?

The best survival tech all have something in common. None of it is erroneous and serves a very valuable purpose. From providing clean water to being able to tune in to emergency broadcasts to chopping your way out of a dicey situation.

Outside of stocking up on cans of beans, bottled water, and Spaghetti-O’s, this list of survival tech should occupy a small space in your go-bag if you want to become the ultimate survival companion.

04/10/2024 02:33 pm GMT

Find the best survival tech for you

Raynic Weather Radio

render of a raynic hand crank radio on a purple background
Image: KnowTechie

The Raynic Weather Radio steps in during a disaster when our smartphones fail. We might think that our phones are infallible, but during a natural disaster, it’s highly probable that cell towers will be down.

So the first thing in your emergency bag should be a crank radio.

It’s rechargeable from the wall, but you can also wind the crank to listen to emergency broadcasts or run the flashlight. And if your phone is dead, you can give it just enough juice to make an emergency call.

It has preset NOAA weather channels, a 3W flashlight, and a 2.5W reading lamp. Plus, since you might be in a hurricane and all, the Raynic Weather Radio is IPX3 waterproof.

Best Overall
Raynic 5000 Solar Hand Crank Radio Raynic 5000 Solar Hand Crank Radio
4.4
$35.99 $29.99

The Weather Radio Raynic 5000 is a versatile emergency tool. Combining solar and hand-crank power, it offers AM/FM/NOAA weather updates, phone charging facilities, and an LED flashlight. High-quality material ensures durability and reliability during crucial times.

What we liked: Built-in light
Rechargeable
Hand crank operation
Includes compass
Comes in LED version
Can recharge your phone
What we didn't like: Won't win any beauty contests
KnowTechie is supported by its audience, so if you buy something through our links, we may get a small share of the sale.
04/10/2024 02:33 pm GMT

LifeStraw Personal Water Filter

render of a lifestraw on a purple background
Image: KnowTechie

The LifeStraw Personal Water Filter has a microfiltration membrane that removes 99.999% of waterborne bacteria and parasites. It also eliminates microplastics, which are sadly a massive part of our water supply.

Basically, if you need to drink murky disaster water, you’ll want to filter it first.

You can drink up to about 4,000 liters (1,000 gallons) of water with this thing before replacing it.

However, the best course of action is to purchase one LifeStraw Personal Water Filter for every family member and add them to the emergency supplies.

Editor's Choice
LifeStraw Personal Water Filter LifeStraw Personal Water Filter
4.6
$19.95 $17.20

The LifeStraw Personal Water Filter is a compact, ultra-light filtration solution, perfect for outdoor adventures or emergency situations. Effectively removes bacteria and parasites from water, delivering clean, safe drinking water. Easy-to-use design for quick hydration when needed.

What we liked: Small and portable
Microfiltration
Great for camping too
What we didn't like: Won't filter everything that could harm you
KnowTechie is supported by its audience, so if you buy something through our links, we may get a small share of the sale.
04/10/2024 02:34 pm GMT

Serjur 8-in-1 Multi-Function Flashlight

render of a serjur multifunction flashlight and box on a purple background
Image: KnowTechie

Multi-tools are the cornerstone of any hurricane go-bag, and the Serjur 8-in-1 Multi-Function is built around a solid flashlight. That bit has seven lighting modes, including a blue and red SOS mode.

The solid magnetic head can be a window breaker, with a seatbelt cutter on the side and a 120dB alarm. You can light up the solar charging panel to a white work light or turn on the strobe to get a rescuer’s attention.

Whether for daily use in the car or as part of your emergency supplies, the Serjur 8-in-1 Multi-Function is a flashlight built for survival.

Best Flashlight
Serjur 8 in 1 Multi Function Flash Light Serjur 8 in 1 Multi Function Flash Light
4.4
$24.99 $21.99

The Serjur 8 in 1 Multi Function Flash Light is a comprehensive safety tool. It includes features like a solar-powered USB rechargeable flashlight, glass breaker, seatbelt cutter, and alarm, providing multiple functionalities in a single compact design. Ideal for emergency scenarios and outdoor usage.

What we liked: Rechargeable
7 flashlight modes
Solar charging
Serves as a mini power bank
What we didn't like: Solar charging only enough to limit standby drain
KnowTechie is supported by its audience, so if you buy something through our links, we may get a small share of the sale.
04/10/2024 02:44 pm GMT

BLAVOR Solar Charger

render of a blavor solar charging power bank  on a purple background
Image: KnowTechie

Since our smartphones can literally be our lifelines during a disaster, you’ll want to keep them charged with the BLAVOR solar charger when the power goes out.

Or, you can at least charge the iPads to keep the kids entertained. The battery is rechargeable through USB-C or from the onboard solar panel in a pinch.

The 10,000mAh battery sets this portable battery apart from its 3,000-4,000mAh competitors. Like many of them, it’s shockproof, dustproof, and IPX5 waterproof.

That means that whether during a tornado, flood, hurricane or just camping by a stream, the BLAVOR Solar Charger will keep you powered up.

Best Power Bank
BLAVOR Solar Charger Power Bank BLAVOR Solar Charger Power Bank
4.3
$39.99 $28.99

The BLAVOR Solar Charger Power Bank is a 10,000mAh portable charger, designed for on-the-go lifestyles. It includes wireless and USB-C charging options, catering to a variety of devices. The product also features dual flashlights for handy light sources, making it ideal for camping and other outdoor adventures.

What we liked: 10,000mAh of power
Qi wireless charging
Built-in flashlight
Compass
Waterproof
Solar charging
What we didn't like: Slow solar charging but will suffice in an emergency
KnowTechie is supported by its audience, so if you buy something through our links, we may get a small share of the sale.
04/10/2024 02:47 pm GMT

Jackery Portable Power Station

render of a jackery explorer 240 portable power station on a purple background
Image: KnowTechie

The lithium-ion battery in the Jackery Portable Power Station can be charged with a secondary solar panel or by plugging it in to the wall.

While this power station won’t fit in your emergency supply bag, it’s a great alternative to a full-on gas-powered generator. You can’t plug your refrigerator into it, but you can charge smaller appliances, like your George Foreman grill.

During a hurricane or tornado, power is essential. It enables us to communicate and coordinate.

If you have a bunker or basement, keeping a Jackery Portable Power Station on the shelf next to toilet paper and Pop-Tarts is a good idea to maintain a semblance of modern survivability.

Best Portable Power Station
Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 240 Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 240
4.6
$239.99 $178.00

The Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 240 is a 240Wh power hub, ideally suited for outdoor adventures and emergencies. It features a lithium-ion battery and supports multiple outputs including an AC outlet. Portable and compact, it's suitable for powering various devices on the go.

What we liked: 240 watt-hours
Solar powered
110V/200W AC outlet
Only 6.6lbs
What we didn't like: Heavy to carry around
KnowTechie is supported by its audience, so if you buy something through our links, we may get a small share of the sale.
04/10/2024 02:50 pm GMT

Chefman Electric Smokeless Indoor Grill

render of a chefman electric grill cooking food on a purple background
Image: KnowTechie

If you have a propane grill, you might not need the Chefman Electric Smokeless Indoor Grill when the power goes out. But how’s the wind out there? Cooking on a propane grill outside in 50mph winds is hard.

So when the power goes out, and it’s been a few days, it’s time to start cooking and preserving the meat in your fridge before it goes bad.

That’s why having a portable electric grill is handy. But wait, the power is out; how can you use a grill? Well, it pairs nicely with a portable power station.

And yes, using the juice from a power station is worth it if you want to eat. Plus, the Chefman Electric Smokeless Indoor Grill won’t fill your house with fumes because it’s smokeless.

Best Electric Grill
Chefman Electric Smokeless Indoor Grill Chefman Electric Smokeless Indoor Grill
4.3
$49.99 $37.86

The Chefman Electric Smokeless Indoor Grill provides an outdoor grilling experience indoors. It produces less smoke than traditional indoor grills, ensuring better taste as well as easier clean-up. The grill comes with a non-stick surface and adjustable temperature control for precise cooking.

What we liked: Totally portable
Smokeless
Easy to clean
Overheat auto shutdown
1,120 Watts
What we didn't like: Fairly small cook surface
Will drain portable power stations pretty quickly
KnowTechie is supported by its audience, so if you buy something through our links, we may get a small share of the sale.
04/10/2024 02:57 pm GMT

Hotdot Rechargeable hand warmer

render of hotdot hand warmers and packaging on a purple background
Image: KnowTechie

Sure, in tropical climates, you might not need the Hotdot Rechargeable hand warmers, but the weather doesn’t always meet expectations. Things can get cold fast, or you could be in a blizzard and not a hurricane.

Using your smartphone with frozen hands is hard, but you’ve got a portable battery, so it’s time to charge the hand warmer.

It’s an optional piece of survival tech, but a hand warmer is a handy thing to have around for those super cold outdoor moments. The Hotdot Rechargeable hand warmer could keep your hands warm long enough to crank your radio and signal for help.

Best Hand Warmer
Hotdot Hand Warmers Rechargeable, 2 Pack Hotdot Hand Warmers Rechargeable, 2 Pack
4.2
$24.99 $12.88

Hotdot Hand Warmers are rechargeable, providing up to 16 hours of warmth in outdoor settings. They are compact and portable, making them easy to carry. These hand warmers double as a 6400mAh battery portable charger, ideal for recharging mobile devices on the go, perfect for camping and outdoor adventures.

What we liked: 6400mAh battery
Heats up in one second
Up to 16 hours warming time
Rechargeable
What we didn't like: Non-removable battery
KnowTechie is supported by its audience, so if you buy something through our links, we may get a small share of the sale.
04/10/2024 03:01 pm GMT

DEWALT 2W Heavy Duty Walkie Talkies

render of two dewalt walkie talkies on a purple background
Image: KnowTechie

During a disaster, whether speaking with family you were separated from or with rescuers, a walkie-talkie is a reliable communication device. These are also IP67 water and dustproof, which means they’ll survive the weather.

With 2,662 channel combinations, you’ll be able to find someone to talk to with the DEWALT 2W Heavy Duty Walkie Talkies.

And you don’t have to wait for a disaster to use them, as they are great for camping and other outdoor activities.

Yes, most survival items are cross-functional, just like general outdoor items, so you should buy everything on this list. Especially the DEWALT 2W Heavy Duty Walkie Talkies so that you can talk to your friends.

Best Walkie Talkies
DEWALT DXFRS800 2 Watt Heavy Duty Walkie Talkies DEWALT DXFRS800 2 Watt Heavy Duty Walkie Talkies
4.4
$149.56

The DEWALT DXFRS800 Walkie-Talkies are heavy-duty, two-way radios designed for long-range communication. A 2-watt power output provides a strong signal over large distances. These walkie-talkies are waterproof and shock-resistant, ensuring durability in harsh conditions.

What we liked: Range up to 300,000 feet
22 preset channels
IP67 dust and waterproof
Shock resistant
What we didn't like: Nothing, these are awesome
KnowTechie is supported by its audience, so if you buy something through our links, we may get a small share of the sale.
04/10/2024 03:12 pm GMT

LcFun Waterproof Lighter

render of lcfun electric lighter on a purple background
Image: KnowTechie

The LcFun Waterproof Lighter is for those times when starting a fire is not such a simple task.

In true survival fashion, you need to make a fire to keep warm, but the wind is howling and raining a bit. It’s a good thing this lighter is windproof and waterproof, creating an electrical charge to start a fire instead of a flame.

Plus, you can keep it charged with your portable battery to start all the fires you want. While starting a fire is not a normal thing to do during a disaster, the LcFun Waterproof Lighter only takes up a little space in your go-bag, so it’s better to be prepared.

Best Electric Lighter
LcFun Waterproof Electric Lighter LcFun Waterproof Electric Lighter
4.4
$9.89

The LcFun Waterproof Electric Lighter is designed with outdoor needs in mind. It's a windproof lighter that uses a dual arc for ignition, powered by a USB rechargeable battery. Because it's flameless, it's safer and more environmentally friendly than traditional lighters. Its waterproof feature makes it a reliable choice for camping, hiking, and other outdoor adventures.

What we liked: USB rechargeable
A dozen different colors
Flameless
Windproof
Waterproof
What we didn't like: Not the best choice for extended outages due to battery life
KnowTechie is supported by its audience, so if you buy something through our links, we may get a small share of the sale.
04/10/2024 03:14 pm GMT

Casio Pro Trek PRG-270-1

render of a casio pro trek watch on a purple background
Image: KnowTechie

The Casio Pro Trek PRG-270-1 is an excellent watch with features. One of those features is essential during a disaster, especially a hurricane or tornado, and that’s the barometer. Once you learn how to read it, you can tell if another storm or tornado is coming and prepare accordingly.

The watch also charges itself through solar charging (if the sun is out), and even in total darkness, it has nine months of battery life on a full charge.

There’s an LED backlight, so you can always see the digital compass and tell which direction you are walking. The Casio Pro Trek PRG-270-1 is a solid accessory that lives on your wrist, providing pertinent information during a disaster.

Best Survival Watch
Casio Men's Pro Trek Sport Watch Casio Men's Pro Trek Sport Watch
4.7
$200.00 $151.12

The Casio Men's Pro Trek PRG-270-1 is a tough solar multifunction digital sport watch known for its robustness and versatility. Its triple sensor provides simple access to a digital compass, barometric pressure, and temperature readings. The watch is powered by solar energy and designed for enhanced outdoor performance.

What we liked: Solar powered charging
100M water resistant
Low temp resistant
Built-in barometer and thermometer
Digital compass
Altimeter
What we didn't like: Bulky on wrist
KnowTechie is supported by its audience, so if you buy something through our links, we may get a small share of the sale.
04/10/2024 03:16 pm GMT

How to pick your survival tech stash

Aside from these tech-focused items, you will also need some standard items in your emergency kit.

Be sure to grab a nice first aid kit, a comprehensive survival kit (like with multi-tools, paracord, fire starters, emergency blankets, and other survival items), a few cases of water, and toilet paper.

Cans of beans are fine, as is peanut butter, but those things take up a lot of space in a go-bag. Instead, try dehydrated meal kits or MREs.

Regardless, keeping the best survival tech on hand during a natural disaster can be the difference between life and death.

Have any thoughts on this? Drop us a line below in the comments, or carry the discussion to our Twitter or Facebook.

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A tech writer on the internet for over 15 years for outlets such as Forbes, Wired, TNW, and others, Curtis is exhausted, burnt out and happy to just write buying guides and the occasional review for KnowTechie, the best tech blog your mom never told you about. Ephemeral existence for ephemeral times. Please send pitches and grainy pictures of the inside of your elbow to kevin@knowtechie.com

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