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10 Easy Ways To Remove A Stripped Screw

How to remove a stuck screw… Finding an easy solution to removing a stripped screw is not always simple. Maybe you have stripped a screw on your mobile device such as an iPhone or taking apart a household appliance. We have all been in a situation where time is a factor and a screw becomes stripped. What is the easiest and fastest method to remove it? That answer depends on what type of screw or fastener you have stripped. No matter what type of screw you have stripped (Phillips head, Flat, or Straight head) these screw removal methods will help you to extract it quickly. Use the list below to find the best method to remove that stripped screw or bolt no matter what your situation is.

10 ways to remove stripped screws

  1. Rubber Band – This screw removal method is done by putting the rubber band over the stripped screw. Put your screwdriver over it and with the rubber band between the screw and the screwdriver push with heavy force and turn slowly.
  2. Hammer Method – Put the screwdriver into the stripped screw. Hammer the end of the screwdriver. This may work by getting the screw driver to go into the soft metal of the screw allowing you the added grip to screw it out.
  3. Epoxy Glue – Glue a nut on top of the screw. You can also use a strong adhesive like JB Weld also. Once the glue or adhesive is dry and set, use a wrench to turn the nut and hopefully it will hold and unscrew the screw with it.
  4. Screw Extractor – This is a special tool that is made for the purpose of removing stripped screws. These would be “easy out’s, grabit’s, left twist’s, reverse bits, and vampliers”. These all can do the job of removing screws but should be purchased before hand and kept in your toolbox for future screw and bolt extraction issues.
  5. Drill Hole In Screw – You can use a drill bit slightly smaller than the screw head. Drill a small hole into the center of the screw head. This method works by opening up the hole to allow you to get deeper into the screw to unscrew it.
  6. Size Bigger Screwdriver – If you have a stripped Phillips head screw, sometimes using a size bigger Phillips screwdriver can give you the extra grip needed to get the screw out. Maybe even try a smaller Phillips also.
  7. Grip With Pliers – If the head of the screw is slightly above the hole, you can use a pair of pliers or vise grips to securely grab the screw head and turn it out. This is the easiest method if the screw is stripped but the head is sticking out above the hole.
  8. Grinding Tool – If you have a grinding tool like a Ryobi or Dremel tool, you can use one of the cutter blades to cut a straight notched line on the screw head. The deeper you make the notch the easier it will be to remove the screw.
  9. Weld It – If you know how to weld and heat will not damage the device the screw is in, weld a nut or piece of metal to the screw. Once welded you simply only need to turn the nut or metal piece and the screw will be extracted.
  10. Drill Head Off Screw – Use a drill and as a last resort, drill the head of the screw completely off. Use a smaller drill bit than the width of the screw so you do not drill the threads out on the device the screw is in. Do not drill deep and you only want to remove the screw head. When the screw head is removed, the shaft of the screw should be sticking out. You should be able to grip it with a pair of pliers and unscrew it out.

Below are 3 different charts to help you better understand what type of screw head and screw type you are working with. If you need to go to buy a screw extractor kit, use the charts below to know what type of kit you may need as extractor kits differ slightly.

screw--head--chart078 screw-ident types_of_screw_heads

Got a great tip we don’t have listed here to remove a stuck screw? Help everyone out and leave a comment below.

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10 thoughts on “10 Easy Ways To Remove A Stripped Screw”

  1. I don’t know who you are and I doubt you’ll ever see this comment, but you totally saved the day for me. I couldn’t get a screw out of my TV monitor that I’m packing to move across country. I was about ready to throw the $$$$ flat screen tv in the trash, I was so frustrated. I used the heating and rubber band methods. The combination worked. Thank you, internet person!

  2. 120 grit lapping compound before you ever turn the screwdriver. Prevent the strip. Also works on mildly stripped screws.

  3. Sandra Sanders

    The stripped screw I’m trying to get out is in a tub spout, it’s a phillips head.
    I’ve tried a pb blaster, I’ve tried the rubber band, and I’m about to take a hammer to it.
    I know that could and probably would make it even worse.

  4. DIY Project Help Tips

    Use a cordless drill with a small drill bit and drill completely into the screw. If you find the perfect thickness of drill bit, it will drill it out so the threads are removed from the screw, therefore it will come out. Use a smaller drill bit first, and slowly go to a thicker drill bit until the screw is able to be removed. Use caution that you do not damage the threads in the door handle. They may already be damaged as someone has glued the screw in place. So maybe drill it out and if needed buy a new door handle as the handle is most likely damaged.

  5. The screw on the handle of my sliding glass door was installed with glue (not by me). I have now completely stripped the screw trying to get it out with no success. I have tried a screw extractor, also with no success. I have tried acetone as well as heat, also with no success. I am now desperate.

  6. DIY Project Help Tips

    Keith Emery,
    Depending on what you are extracting the bolt from, use heat and try lubricating penetrating sprays. Spray the bolt and let the penetrating spray sit for 20 minutes, wipe off any left over and try heating the bolt. They try your impact driver with extra strong bits. DO not use the bits you get in a 100 pack for $5 dollars. Have you tried screw/bolt extractor bits?

  7. What about removing seized Phillips bolts that aren’t stripped. I’ve tried the manual impact driver. The bits just break instantly. No damage to the bolt at all.

  8. DIY Project Help Tips

    Corroded as in rust? If the screws are in an oven, they should not be corroded. They are more than likely just covered by years of baking splatter and it has baked onto the screws. Buy a screw extractor or drill the screws out with a durable drill bit.

  9. kim Boulbassa

    i need to replace the element on my cooker but the screws holding the backplate in place are very corroded, we have used pliers and bigger phillips screwdrivers but they wont budge, any tips?

  10. You could also try Bit-Biter. The unique formula multiplies friction between a slipping driver and fastener head, creating enhanced gripping power during installation and removal processes. Stripped, rusted, or damaged fasteners and drivers become workable again!

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