14 Surprising Uses for Cable Ties


Ridiculously cheap and ridiculously effective: now that’s the perfect household tool. They’re great for keeping your cords neat and organized, of course, but that’s just one of hundreds of amazing ways to use and reuse (yes, you can recycle them) cable ties. Have your own favorite use? Share them with us in the comments.

Earlier: 15 Easy Lunch Recipes (Slideshow)


Around the House & Garden.

1. Fix a Broken Toilet Handle. No expensive repairs required: just reattach a broken toilet chain with a couple of cable ties.

2. Keep Plants Upright. Tomatoes, young trees, cucumbers, roses, and any other plants that need staking, keep them in place with a secure, but not too tight, cable tie.

3. Keep Holiday Decor in Place. A little anal about stringing up Christmas lights? Get nice, straight lines that won’t budge by attaching the lights with cable ties. And, at the end of the season, tie the lights up with more of ‘em so next year you won’t have to deal with a big, knotted mess!

4. Child-Proof Your Home. Keep your children, and any little visitors, safe by placing anything you don’t want them to get their hands on in a cabinet, and keeping that cabinet shut and secure with a cable tie.

5. Repair Wire Baskets. Are there a few gaps in your wire basket? No need to replace the whole thing, just replace the missing wires with zip ties.

Related: 14 Surprising Uses for Nail Polish


Fashion & Beauty.

6. Deter Thieves. Stop sticky-handed people when you’re traveling or out on the town. Tie two zippers together to deter muggers and pickpockets.

7. Quickly Fix a Loose Button. No time to sew a loose button on? Keep it in place in the meantime with a cable tie.

8. Replace Missing Zipper Pulls. Zippers aren’t very useful if you can’t pull them up or down! For a quick fix, attach a cable tie to the zipper.

9. Repair Broken Necklaces. Is the clasp broken on your favorite necklace? Don’t throw it out! Loop a small cable tie through both sides and affix it in place.

See Also: 16 Surprising Uses for Pencils & Erasers


Hobbies, Projects, Home Improvement & More.

10. Upgrade Your Flower Arrangement. Take your flower arrangement to the next level by securing the bouquet with a zip tie before placing it in a vase. Don’t make it too tight, of course, but the flowers won’t move around in water and it’ll look just how you envisioned it! You can also make fabulous wreaths by securing flowers and other items together with cable ties.

11. Ride Your Bike Safely in the Snow. Drivers sometimes use chains to safely navigate snowy, mountainous roads, so, it only makes sense that bicyclists could benefit from the same treatment. Keep your ride wipeout-free by attaching cable ties to your tires. Click here for detailed instructions on this ingenious trick.

12. Securely Ship Stuff. Cable ties are often used in product packaging to keep stuff securely in place. By that same notion, use cable ties to hold whatever you’re mailing out in place.

13. Ridiculously Easy (And Cheap!) DIY Storage. With a couple (free!) plastic milk crates, and a couple cable ties, you can create durable storage for less than $1. Attach milk crates to each other with cable ties, and you’ve got yourself one sturdy storage system. You can even hang it on the wall!

14. Unclog a Drain. No fancy tools or toxic chemicals needed. In fact, you don’t need any chemicals at all! You get out all that gross gunk from your drain with just a cable tie, believe it or not. Click here for detailed instructions.

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Sen Heijkamp
Sen Heijkamp22 days ago

thanks for the tips

Naomi Dreyer
Naomi Dreyer2 months ago

Good ideas.

Past Member 8 months ago

Matt... really? noted.

Past Member 8 months ago

I really enjoy all the "repurposing" articles and the "think outside the box" articles. Thank you for them.

My son used to have a t-shirt that read, "I have duct tape. I can fix anything." :)

John B.
John B.about a year ago

Thanks Katie for sharing the suggestions.

Val M.
Val M.about a year ago


Eileen Mary P.
Eileen P.about a year ago

I will use the one to keep plants upright. Thank you for all the ideas - they're all useful.

Andrea H.
Andrea H.about a year ago

Great ideas.

Jeanne Rogers
Jeanne Rogersabout a year ago

Interesting, thanks!

matt gowty
matt gowty1 years ago

You can fix small holes in a radiator by melting cable-ties with a soldering iron.