Make an Emergency Oil Lamp for $3

Posted in: How-To, Off-Grid Living
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In an emergency situation like a power outage or storm, you may find yourself with adequate lighting. We will show you how to make an Emergency Oil Lamp from Dollar Tree supplies, providing you don’t already have this in your home. The cost for this project is $3.75 +tax (not counting the drill and drill bit). and take about 2-4 minutes to complete.

Items needed:

  • A drill with a 3/8″ drill bit (if you don’t have a drill you can use another method to puncture a hole in the lid)
  • A mason jar
  • Cotton Rope
  • Scissors or Knife
  • Vegetable oil or lamp oil

Safety Note:

Please use caution while doing this. Performing tasks in this post have risks and hazards and if you do make an Emergency Oil Lamp, Patriots Prep is and will not be held liable for any damages and you are doing so at your own risk.

Preparing the lid and wick

Remove the mason jar lid and flip the lid over. Then screw the ring back onto the jar. Now we take our drill and put a hole in the center of the lid from the bottom side of the lid up. Remove the lid once completed and then thread your cotton rope through the lid. Make sure it is 100% cotton, you do not want to use a poly rope.

After you thread your rope up through the lid (bottom side to top) we need to cut it to the proper length. To do this use the length of your mason jar and add a little extra. Take a pair of sharp scissors or a knife and cut the rope. Be sure to also trim the wick protruding from the top. We do not need it to be too long. About one inch should be more than enough.

Adding Vegetable Oil or Lamp Oil

Before placing the mason jar lid back on grab your oil and fill your jar up. You don’t have to fill it completely up if you don’t have enough to do so. Once you have put your oil in the jar, you can now attach the lid and secure it.

Priming the wick and Checking for Leaks

This is our final step. Priming the wick consists of turning the jar upside down so that the oil runs to the dry parts of the with protruding from the jar. Once you can see that it is moist you are good to go. Also, keep a close eye on the hole where the wick goes through. There shouldn’t be any oil coming through. If there is you made the hole too big and should replace it with one with a smaller hole.

Ready for Light

Now that we have completed all the steps we can now light our Emergency Oil Lamp and enjoy the light, or heat if you are using it for some heat.


This Emergency Oil Lamp can also be used for cooking, heating water, and so on. Just like you would do with making a campfire, only on a smaller scale.

Patriots Prep would like to thank for this awesome #lifehack

The full video can be found here: TikTok

If it happens to mysteriously get deleted you can also watch it below.

Patriots Prep General Food Preparedness

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