A Washboard is a Great Survival Prep Item


A number of years ago we purchased a washboard (actually we have several). It’s something we’ll be able to use to help clean the clothes if the power goes out for an extended time.

It’s a simple tool – made with a wooden frame that holds a metal scrub board lined with ridges which help to loosen the dirt while washing clothes against it.

I don’t know if any of you have ever used a washboard or if you have one in your supplies, but it’s a device that our ancestors used before advent of the washing machine.


Question: Although washing your clothes will not be one of your high concerns if and when the grid goes down for an extended time (e.g. cyber-attack, EMP, etc..), assuming that you survive the follow-on chaos and are able to successfully homestead somewhere, among the many tasks you’ll face will be keeping clean – including your clothes. How will you do it?

There is nothing like a good old fashioned washboard. Just a few scrubs takes out the ground-in dirt (your scrubbing will be directly proportional to the dirt involved 😉 ). This washboard is very sturdily built, the ribs of the board are just deep enough and not so deeply ribbed that even the ‘finest of fabrics’ can be cleaned of spots and stains.

Many parts of the world still use washboards for washing clothes. Clothes are soaked in hot soapy water in a washtub or sink, then squeezed and rubbed against the ridged surface of the washboard to force the wash liquid through the cloth to carry away dirt. A bit of scrubbing together with a soap bar of Zote or Fels Naptha will get the job done. And it will still do a reasonable job without any soap…

Fels Naptha (24 bars)

Washboards can be used in a sink or bucket, or can also be used for washing in a river or any body of water, with or without soap.

When you are thinking about your prep items and what you may need during a worst-case-scenario (extended grid-down), don’t forget about how you will wash your clothes!

What’s your plan?

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