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6 Questions to Ask When Buying Survival Equipment

As the survivalist and prepper way of life becomes more popular, the options for survival equipment become more diverse. Amazon alone features over one million results for ‘survival equipment’ and Google produces an impressive 16 million results. When we think of the ideal qualities in survival equipment: simple, effective, low-maintenance, and indestructible is just a start. If the options for fire starters alone could yield thousands, possibly millions, of results, people need a guide to help them decide what qualities they should be looking for.


1. Does It Have Utility?

The item should obviously perform as advertised but we value survival items that are multi-functional and offers utility for numerous tasks. Ex. is the emergency blanket strong enough to be used as a makeshift shelter?

2. Does It Do What It's Advertised to Do?

Many companies advertise items that ‘last forever’ or work ‘rain or shine’ but do they really? Consider buying two items and trying one at home; you gain practice while testing the reliability of essential items.

3. Is It Durable?

According to Murphy's Law, the conditions in which you have to use survival equipment will likely be very poor. Will it work under poor conditions? Will it work when it has to? How long will it last you? Does it have an expiration date?

4. Is It Dependable?

Survival items should not only work when you need them, they should continue to work regardless of conditions. A fire starter that only works 5 or 6 times will not be very useful.

5. Can You Carry It?

This has more to do with how the item will fit in your pack, pocket, or vehicle? Items should be light-weight and compact. Consider how much everything will weight together because food and water rations often make up a lot of weight.

6. Is It Affordable?

There are a lot of high quality survival items on the market yet not all truly offer high-quality utility. Fire-starters that cost $80 often feature identical designs compared to more affordable models and tend to be overly complicated. We tend to offer items at various price points in order to help customer chose what works for them.


Depending on the item in question, there are likely other things to consider (customer reviews, child-friendly, etc.). However, the above questions apply to all of the items we consider for inventory. We pride ourselves on the methods and standards we use in choosing our products. We’ve spent years collecting and purchasing equipment based on our own survival adventure experiences. A.S.E. was founded following our own experiences trying to gather equipment for a series of wilderness treks. Our products are chosen based on personal experience, military knowledge, consistent research, and customer feedback in order to update and maintain our products. If you are looking for survival gear that meets all of the criteria and more, A.S.E. features kits, gear, and accessories for any need.


This entry was originally posted on August 11, 2012 by Brian Greenlee

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