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35 Creative Uses for Duct Tape - And Then Some!

Updated on September 24, 2012
A little duct tape goes a long way toward binding the universe.
A little duct tape goes a long way toward binding the universe. | Source

By Joan Whetzel

Carl Zwanig, a test engineer from San Francisco, became famous (or maybe infamous) for the following quote: "Duct tape is like the force. It has a light side, and a dark side, and it holds the universe together." Duct tape, a rubber based tape with a fabric and adhesive backing, has proven itself to be an essential for any toolbox, thanks to its strength and durability. It comes in a variety of colors which were intended to hide repairs, but have since been hijacked for creative and artistic uses. Listed below are 35 of the top creative and functional uses for duct tape followed by a list of 8 "don't try this at home" uses for this unique product.

1. Fix broken taillight on vehicle. Red is probably the most commonly used color for this fix. May not be legal thought, so don't blame me if you get stopped.

2. Twist a long piece into rope (thousands more uses). As long as you stretch it while creating the rope, it should work quite well.

3. Tape wires down on floor or out of the way. How many conventions and other events have we all been to where we've stepped over these taped down wires? It's better than tripping over them.

4. Tape wires back together after splicing. In this case, it's better than electrical tape because it's wider and probably because it's a little stronger and more durable than electrical tape.

5. Reattach rear view mirror.It's less expensive than the little plastic part that is only available from car dealership repair shops. Probably lasts longer too.

6. Repair broken hoses. Even wet, this stuff doesn't give out. Your hose will last forever.

7. Repair broken fan belt. Not so sure I'd want to try this one. It would create a lump in the repaired section that could cause problems in the engine compartment. Though if you were in the middle of nowhere and needed a quick fix to last just long enough to get you to the nearest car repair place, I guess it might work.

8. Attach leg splint to broken leg. Yeah, I can hear the screaming from here as the leg hair gets ripped out in the emergency room.

9. Hinge on cabinet door. One question. How do you remove the tape goo without removing the wood stain on the cabinetry.

10. Repairing leak in tire/inner tube.Emergency repairs only. This is not a long term fix.

11. Repair upholstery. This sounds like a bachelor pad fix.

12. Patches holes in vinyl siding. As long as the neighbors don't complain and the community association doesn't care, go for it.

13. Holding on book covers. That book must get a lot of abuse if you need to haul out the duct tape for repairs.

14. Fashion Statement. Create anything from work clothes to prom dresses with your own patterns and some colorful duct tape.

15. Hold temple onto eyeglasses or repair the bridge on eyeglasses.The universal geek repair.

16. Hold car hood shut.Hold car door shut Hold your car's bumper in place. How many cars are being held together with duct tape? Is this legal? Will it pass a state inspection?

17. Patch hole in canoe. Patch it both inside and outside for the fix to hold.

18. Hold batteries in remote control.For those of us with kids continually lose the door to the battery compartments on remote controls and all of the other battery operated gadgets around the house, duct tape is indispensable for keeping the batteries in place.

19. Belt.Twisting it and stretching it into a rope creates a tie belt. Or create a flat belt with two flat pieces with the sticky sides together that can be used with a belt buckle. A simple hole punch is all you need to create the holes to match up with the buckle.

20. Mouse trap.Entice him with a little food andthat mouse will never get loose from this one.

21. Flypaper. Hang it near a light to attract the flies, and moths and any other flying critter that's attracted to the light.

22. Retread your tennis shoes.Works as good as a super radial retread.

23. Patch seams in carpeting.By placing the tape on the underside of the carpeting, you might even be able to hide the repair with some types of carpeting.

24. Patch a hole in a tent.If you're worried about the weather undoing this repair, patch it inside and out for a double strength repair.

25. Temporarily hem your pants. You get a hidden hem with this one. Plus it's quick and easy. Although, there may be some question about how well this would hold up under multiple washings.

26. Remove lint on clothing. Yeah it'll get rid of the lint, and what else? It may leave a bit of goo behind on your clothing, to attract more lint of course.

27. Make a bandage in a pinch. Place a clean cloth or piece of gauze against the injury before securing it with the duct tape. And be prepared for the ear shattering scream when it rips out the hair later.

28. Hang Christmas lights. Who needs nails or hooks? This stuff even stands up to snow and some windy conditions.

29. Wrap holiday presents. Those must be some heavy duty presents if they need wrapping with duct tape. Or maybe you just want to make the unwrapping last longer.

30. Who needs Post-It™ notes? Duct tape any paper note anyplace you like, anytime you like.

31. Cubicle redecorating: Use any color of duct tape for a unique décor technique. Did you know it came in fluorescent colors too?

32. Want more privacy? Roof in your cubicle, tape over your windows or sky lights, build a duct tape curtain to block your doorways.

33. Office repairs. It's cheaper than conventional repairs. It's way cheaper than replacing equipment when a little piece of duct tape will cure everything.

34. Self-stick bulletin boards. Instead of the cork board and thumbtack routine, stretch out several strips of duct tape, sticky side out, and simply attach any papers and notices you want to the tape board. Of course, you won't be able to remove anything from this bulletin board, but it won't fall down or get lost either.

35. Fix vacuum cleaner hose. There's nothing worse than a vacuum cleaner with no suction power. It really sucks. To get the suck back, seal the leak with the duct tape.

Don't Try This at Home - 8 More Weird Uses for Duct Tape

And now for the ones you should probably not do at home.

  1. Torture. No need to go into details. Let's leave it to the imagination, shall we?
  2. Keep his pants zipped up. We won't mention any names here, but one or two politicians could have benefitted from this one.
  3. Wrap up freshmen. Ahh! A little hazing goes a long way - toward getting you into trouble.
  4. Anchor toupees. This guy must drive convertibles at a high rate of speed.
  5. No more mowing. Roll out a duct tape lawn - green of course.
  6. Tape annoying people to walls or the floor. Yeah, hazing irritating co-workers and maddening, infuriating, exasperating relatives. Add the mute function listed below to keep them quiet.

7. Toilet paper. Ow!

8. Mute function for humans.I can think of one or two humans who could benefit from this one.

Myth Busters Results. Episode 126: Duct Tape Hour.

Discovery Channel. Myth Buster: Duct Tape Hour. Video (Season 7, Episode 13)

You Tube. Season 10, Episode 1 - Duct Tape Island.

Mty Busters - Duct Tape Hour 2, Duct Tape Bridge


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    • Georgina_writes profile image

      Georgina_writes 5 years ago from Dartmoor

      It's also great for curing warts or verrucas.

      1. Tape over the offending wart

      2. Remove tape once every 24 hours and file the wart.

      3. Replace tape

      4. Keep doing this until wart is gone.

    • Just Ask Susan profile image

      Susan Zutautas 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I've used duct tape in many of the ways that you've listed here. Using as a fly strip or for catching a mouse I'd not thought of. Duct Tape is almost as good as sliced bread :)