When the head of a screw is broken off, removing it can be difficult. It can be even more frustrating when it’s stuck in a difficult-to-reach spot, or in a thick piece of wood.
Fortunately, there are a few ways to remove the broken head of a screw. Some involve using an extractor or a drill bit, while others use pliers or even cover the screw.
Use a Left-Handed Drill Bit
Using a left-handed drill bit is an effective way to remove a screw with no head. This is a method that requires precise accuracy and training, but it can be worth it when you get the screw out.
Unlike right-handed twist drill bits, which have flutes that twist clockwise from the rear of the bit toward the point, left-handed drill bits have flutes that twist counterclockwise. This gives them a better bite when used in reverse to extract a fastener.
This method is especially useful if you don’t have access to a hammer or can’t use one because of the material that the screw has been drilled into. It also works with soft metals like aluminum or brass.
A left-handed drill bit is the best option for removing a stripped screw. This is because it allows you to make a hole in the screw’s head and then use your drill in reverse to extract the screw.
Weld a Nut
When a screw has been stripped, you can try spot welding a nut to the head to make it easier to remove. This is a type of projection welding that can be used on a variety of materials, including stainless steel.
Some common types of weld nuts include round base nuts, slab base nuts, tab base nuts, hex weld nuts, retainer weld nuts and tube end nuts. Some other types of nuts include self-locking nuts and twin piloted nuts.
Weld nuts are a popular choice for industrial applications because they can be welded to flat surfaces to provide a female threaded mounting point. They also can be welded onto thicker materials to improve strength.
Make a New Head
A broken screw is a common problem at home and in furniture workshops. It is caused by various factors, including oxidation and rust from atmospheric agents, pressure and age.
Hence, it is always better to replace these screws within a period of time. This way, they will not break down and you will not have to face this issue again.
However, if you do not want to use any extractor tool and are not interested in the destructive method, there are some hacks that can help you remove a screw with no head.
For example, you can use a rotary tool to cut a slot into the screw head. Once you have done that, use a flat-head screwdriver and press it firmly into the new slot. Then, twist slowly until it comes out. This is a good trick for stuck round or pan head screws.
The Pliers Method
Pliers are a hand tool that provides leverage to grip and manipulate items too small or difficult to handle with the fingers. They are also useful for cutting and bending materials.
General-purpose pliers are typically forged from alloyed steels with additives like vanadium or chromium to improve strength and prevent corrosion. They can be made to grip, cut, or bend various types of objects, such as wires, sheet metal, or fine machine components.
Depending on the type of pliers, the jaws may be shaped or angled to provide more gripping power. They may also have serrated or cross-hatched teeth to provide more control.
To use pliers, grip the handles in your hands and open them (some pliers are spring loaded and automatically open). Position the flat parts of the jaws either side of an object to be gripped or cut.