While you’re stuck at home trying to social distance, you’ve probably noticed little things around the house that need to be fixed, upgraded or replaced that you weren’t aware of before life took a turn indoors. I sure have.
Most of the practical things I’ve needed to purchase recently have been under $20. Even better, they’ve made a difference in my day to day life.
Looking for more online shopping ideas? Tap or click here for 20 Amazon items I bought on Amazon you might want, too.
The products below are all useful and practical — and they won’t break the bank. I’ve tested them out and thought they could be useful for you too, whether it’s to help make camping trips more comfortable or cut down on the annoying distractions from LED lights.
1. Get rid of those annoying blue lights
We have electronics in just about every room, and most of them use some type of LED light to illuminate the buttons. I wanted to find a way to get rid of the glaring blue lights. These LightDims light-blocking LED covers work like a charm.
These peel-and-stick light blockers stop the unwanted glow of LED lights in any room or even your car, and they don’t leave a sticky residue when you remove them. Each package contains over 100 dims, and any house with electronics could benefit from them. Mine sure did.
2. Instead of replacing the entire screen, fix it with tape
Window screens get tears and holes in them over the years. With fall nearly upon us, it’s time to fix yours up. What I realized recently, though, is that you don’t have to replace the entire window screen if you’ve got a small tear in it. You can use tape instead.
I’ve been using Window Screen Repair Kit Tape. It’s super easy to use due to the strong, sticky adhesive, and it eliminates the need to replace window screens that have small spots of damage but are otherwise fine. It doesn’t even require special tools to use — I’ve patched my screens in less than 30 seconds with it, and it’s held up just fine over time.
3. Ceiling fan chains so you know which one to pull for the light and which one to pull for the fan
I always manage to pull the wrong chain on the ceiling fan when the chains all look alike. It’s annoying, and I don’t like throwing off my fan settings by pulling the wrong one.
This Ceiling Fan Pull Chain Set has different chain designs you can add to your ceiling fan so you know by looking at it which chain controls your fan and which controls the light. The designs are tasteful but easy to recognize, and I now know which chain to pull just by glancing at it.
4. Stop bending over to pick things up
I bought this Reacher Grabber Tool for my mother, and she uses it all the time to pick things up off the floor. Your parent or relative who’s struggling with issues like arthritis or carpal tunnel syndrome might benefit from it, too.
It’s lightweight, rotates and extends up to 32 inches. The textured rubberized ends make it easy to grab objects between 3 and 5 pounds, and the rubber jaw can rotate a full 360 degrees to be used both vertically and horizontally to help grab items in hard to reach places.
5. A great little AC unit
It’s hot — really hot, and every house has its hot spots. This portable AC unit is a 3-in-1 personal air conditioner cooler, fan,and air humidifier. Yes, it’s a little more than $20, but I’ve found it to be worth the extra cash since it helps cool me down at my desk.
If you’re in an area with a really warm climate or live in a home with poor air circulation, you may find this AC unit to be well worth the price, too. It’s compact, doesn’t take up much space on your desk or side table and has three speed settings. Plus it’s portable, which means you can take it with you on camping trips or outdoor excursions to help cut down on the heat from the blazing summer sun.
6. Carry all your shopping bags
When I go to the store these days, I stock up. However, the straps on my reusable grocery bags tend to slip down my arm as I try to carry them to and from the car.
This Grocery Gripps Carrier has made carrying multiple grocery bags easy because it secures all your bags together as one to prevent them from slipping. It can hold up to 200 pounds, so you don’t have to worry about it malfunctioning when you’re dragging a heavy grocery load either.
7. This apple makes your produce last longer so you’ll save money
The fewer grocery orders I make, the more I’ve realized how important it is to keep my produce fresher for longer. I found these Bluapple Produce Freshness Saver Balls to help, and you might find them useful for extending the life of your produce, too.
They absorb ethylene gas, which causes produce to ripen quickly. By using these apples, your produce will stay fresh up to two to three times longer, and all you have to do is toss them in the fruit bowl or crisper drawer to use them.
8. Stop fighting over who lost the remote and just put them all here
Every house has fights over who last had the remote, mine included. I’ve been eliminating those silly arguments with the help of this SITHON Remote Control Holder. You’ll never have to ask who has the remote again if you use all agree to use this remote holder, which can organize up to five remote controls at once — and it looks nice doing it.
This leather caddy holds remotes for any device: Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and any other streaming or cable option you’re using. We just toss the remote back into the holder once we’ve used it and it’s easy to find every time.
9. Restore your grout to its original color
The more I’m indoors, the more I’ve noticed things like the color of my grout, which had gone from bright to dingy over time. No amount of cleaning products were helping to restore it to its original color, but this grout pen did.
If you live in an area with hard water or other water issues, this grout pen can help you easily and quickly restore your grout to its original color without a ton of work. All I had to do was run it across the grout lines to use it — no scrubbing needed.
10. Forget cleaning underneath gas burners, just use these covers
I like to cook, but I don’t like having to scrub and scrape the mess that happens around my burners from whipping up dinner. These stovetop covers eliminate the need to scrub away stuck-on food or oil.
The nice thing about these covers is that they’re non-toxic, can resist temperatures up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit and are safe to use near the flame — as long as they’re at least 0.5 inches from the direct flame. They just slip over the burner and I pull them off and toss them in the dishwasher when I’m done cooking. The stove is clean, and the dishwasher cleans the covers. Easy!
11. Reusable grocery bags that fold up to keep in your car
I like to keep reusable grocery bags in my car, but most of them are bulky and take up a lot of space. These folding, reusable grocery bags are compact and easy to store, though — which is why I keep them in my center console for quick trips to the store.
If you’re struggling with how to store your bulky reusable bags, these foldable bags are a good alternative. They’re machine-washable, can handle large or heavy items and they’re stylish, too. Plus, they come with a 1-year, no-rip guarantee in case something does happen.
12. The perfect camping combo
It’s fun to spend time in the great outdoors. Walking around a dark, unfamiliar campsite without any idea of what’s in front of you? Not so much. This lantern is super useful when camping because it’s portable and doubles as a fan, which is nice during hot evenings.
The fan and the light have multiple settings, making camping a lot more comfortable in the heat and the dark.
13. Light up trick-to-reach areas
If you’re working under the sink or in another dark place, forget holding a flashlight or trying to use your phone to light things up. These light-up gloves use battery-powered LED lights to illuminate dark places without a flashlight. How handy is that?
These gloves have been pretty helpful for me and Barry around the house, but you might be able to use them to tinker with the car or find stuff in storage without having to take a flashlight in tow. They’re comfortable, lightweight and designed to keep the light from shifting, so you can see what you need to see without fear that your gloves will shift and you’ll lose sight of it.
14. Keep the flies out, even with the windows open
I like opening all of the windows in my home, but I don’t like the bugs that come in with them. I’ve been eliminating the flies that see my open windows as an invite into my home with a non-toxic fly trap made of sticky glue and waterproof paper. It traps flies hovering near my windows without any weird chemicals or toxins.
If you’re the type of person who likes open windows during certain times of the year but hates opening your home to flies, this fly paper could be useful for you, too. I like that it works without any harmful chemicals, and it still keeps my home free of pests.
15. Hide your valuables in plain sight
Leaving valuables out in the open leaves too much opportunity for people to find and grab them. Why not go the covert route? This book safe fits right on the shelf and is easily disguised as one of your books to keep jewelry, cash or other small items locked away.
All I have to do to access my valuables is lift the front cover to reveal the safe cover. It has a key lock with two keys, so even if someone were to find it hiding on my shelf, they couldn’t easily access what’s hiding inside.
16. Hitting the road this summer? Grab one of these
Mosquito and other bug bites are the worst, but this bug bite suction remover comes in handy to stop the effects — and I’ve found it to be pretty useful while spending time outdoors this summer.
If you spend evenings on your porch or weekends camping, you might want to invest in this inexpensive tool. It can remove insect venom, saliva and other irritants left under the skin using suction, and it works on bites and stings from a ton of insects. It’s clinically proven and kid-friendly, too, so you can just toss it in your purse or bag any time you’re headed outdoors and if you’re stung, just let the suction do its job.
17. Don’t let the AC leave the room or your house
I like to keep the cool air from the AC where it belongs: in my house. That can be tough to do, though, if you’ve got door gaps or damaged weather stripping that allows the AC to escape through the openings.
I recently invested in these draft door stoppers, and you might find them useful, too. They work as a seal for interior and exterior doors of all sizes and materials, and lock into place strong adhesive that really stays in place. They also help block out noise and light from the openings, which is an added bonus.
18. Bamboo paper towels you can wash and reuse over and over
I used to go through tons of paper towels, but I’ve cut down on the amount of paper products I’m using with the help of these bamboo paper towels. I like them because they’re eco-friendly and easy to clean and use. And you never know when the store will be sold out of regular paper towels.
They come in rolls just like normal paper towels, but unlike traditional paper towels, the 20 bamboo paper towel sheets are washable in cold water by hand and reusable up to 100 times. One roll is equivalent to three to six months worth of regular paper towels.
19. Motion sensor LED lights for your closet, hallway and stairs
I prefer not to have to fumble around for the light switch in dark places, and I don’t rely on Alexa to turn on my lights for me. That’s why I purchased these motion-sensor LED lights. I use them in my closets, hallway and on the stairs so the dark areas illuminate automatically, making it easy to navigate the dark house or find what I need.
If you’ve got stuff in storage in a dark closet or just tend to get up at night for water or to check on kids, invest in a few of these lights. They’re battery-powered, motion-sensored and can be placed just about anywhere you might need them via the adhesive pad on the back.
20. I keep this in the pantry so when I need to get something up high in the cabinets or pantry, it’s within reach
My pantry has shelves that are well out of my reach, which makes it tough to grab what I need sometimes. I bought this folding step stool that’s always aroudn to help me out.
If you’ve found yourself struggling to reach certain shelves or have been balancing on a chair to get up high in the pantry, check it out. It folds away flat and is easy to collapse with one hand — and it has anti-slip dots on the feet.
Bonus: Quit arguing over the charger base
Charger bases always seem to go missing in my house, and it’s tough to charge multiple tablets, phones and other devices when everyone is sharing one base. This charger base lets you charge up to four devices at once with USB cords.
If you’re trying to find a way to charge multiple devices with one charger base, this port wall charger could be a big help. It provides up to 8 amps of power, offers built-in device protection and it can charge up to four devices at one time.