What’s the toughest part of the home repair work? Any guesses? If you’ve done it before, you’ll definitely agree that stripped screws are toughest, and test even the most experienced laborers.
A stripped screw is a screw with a damaged or broken head, and the screw will no longer provide any grip on your screwdriver to apply the force. Unscrewing these little devils can be the most challenging part for any repair enthusiast because they simply don’t want to come out.
What could you possibly do when the ‘+” shape on the head has turned into a “o” shape? Frustrating, isn’t it?
There are several reasons why this “shape-change” happens, and some of them are listed below:
- Using low-quality tools
- Fast working
- Using wrong screw bit while screwing
- Over tightening
- Using incorrect sized drill bit with a power drill
- Using the incorrect sized screwdriver
Screw Types Used In a Shower Faucet
There are solutions to solve this problem, and we will provide you an answer and different ways to extract a stripped screw. First, keep in mind that there are two types of screws with a shower faucet.
It is also known as socket head cap screw, a unique type of fastener. This screw has a small head with a threaded end. Usually, socket cap screws are used in machines. It has a cylindrical head containing a hexagonal socket.
The Allen wrench tool is used to drive these screws with a hexagonal socket.
Phillips head comes with a cross shaped head, and it works with Phillip’s head screwdriver. Usually, it comes in a variety of sizes.
How to Remove a Stripped Screw from a Shower Faucet
First, I’ll explain how to remove a Phillips screw, stripped of course, from the shower faucet. By the way, you can follow this method to remove the screw from almost any surface.
Follow these steps:
Make a hole on the screw by using a drill machine with a cobalt-made drill bit. Check the screw size and choose the same drill bit size. It should fit the stripped screw without any gap.
Drill a Hole
Now, set the drill bit carefully on the stripped screw head and switch on the drill machine. You need to drill until it reaches the bottom of Phillips or Allen head screw. After reaching at the bottom, remove the drill machine carefully.
Remove the Stripped Screw Head
After drilling the screw, now you need to remove the screw head. Change the drill bit and attach a new one according to the size of the screw head. You need to drill carefully to reach the faucet handle’s inside diameter.
Be very careful and stable while drilling the faucet handle. After you reach inside of the faucet handle, you can remove the drill without damaging the handle.
Insert the Screw Extractor
Choose the right size screw extractor from the set box and insert it inside the drilled hole. The screw extractor may be more oversized than the drilled hole in the screw head. In this case, you can use the drill bit and machine to deepen the hole slightly.
Now, you can insert the screw extractor properly in the screw head hole.
Remove the Screw
Now, it’s time to remove the screw. For this purpose, an adjustable wrench is required to attach with the screw extractor. You can also use locking pliers if you don’t have an adjustable wrench for this work.
Now, attach the wrench with the screw extractor, and after tightening it, move it in the counterclockwise direction to remove the stripped screw from the faucet handle.
How to Remove a Stripped Allen Screw from Faucet
Allen screws have a cylindrical shape on their heads and work with the Allen screwdriver. In case it gets stripped, there are many techniques to remove it easily.
The Rubber Band Trick
You can use a rubber band and wrap it over the stripped screw. Firmly insert the flat head screwdriver right on the rubber band. Rotate the screwdriver in a counterclockwise direction gradually.
As another option, you can use a screw extractor. For this job, you must know the right size and use an adjustable wrench with the screw extractor.
There are many products available in the market specially designed to solve this type of problems. Once you apply the product on a stripped screw, it will increase friction between the Allen Head and the screwdriver.
It works the same way as rubber bands. However, it is not a 100-percent cure for all but still can provide you the best results on screws that are not too much stripped.
Dremel Tools Or Hacksaw
You can easily cut the top stripped screw if you have Dremel tools. Use the flat head screwdriver, insert it into the groove, and rotate the screw out of the hole. You can also use a hacksaw to cut the notch if you don’t have a Dremel tool.
How to Avoid Stripping the Screw
- When you are using a screwdriver, try to snug fit into the screw head without any gap.
- Electrical tools are not appropriate for driving in screws. Drills may help make holes but don’t provide enough torque at a low speed to drive in screws properly.
- Drill the screw at a low speed, because there’s a risk of the drill bit slipping out of the slot and causing damage to the screw head. Damages could happen if you don’t apply the right pressure on the screw head or run the drill at faster speed.
- You can do the screwing manually. Just take care of the right amount of force on the screw head.
- Make sure that the screwdriver’s head matches the screw’s head size.
- If it’s a branded screw, then use the screwdriver from the same brand, if possible. That’s because the tools of the same brand will give you the best torque and less slippage.
The essential tool you require to remove the stripped screw from the shower faucet is a drill machine. Once you make the correct hole and attach the extractor inside. At that point, you can take off the stripped screw with the help of locking pliers or an adjustable wrench.
This whole removal process will take not more than 3 to 4 minutes. Safety should be your first priority. Finally, always wear gloves to avoid any accident while working with stripped screws.