Encountering a stripped screw hole is pretty normal for all of us. From sheet metals to wooden doors, these holes can appear anytime anywhere. And when they appear, they surely bring a lot of difficulties with them.
Isn’t it frustrating how a little screw can cause you so much trouble? Well, wave off your annoyance. Cause here we’ll be discussing how to fix a stripped screw hole in sheet metal once and for all.
While there are many methods to fix a stripped screw hole, we’ve rounded up the easiest and most effective strategies to get rid of them.
Ready to talk that damaged hole down? Walk with me.
How to Remove a Stripped Sheet Metal Screw?
Before fixing the stripped screw hole from your sheet metal, you gotta know how to remove a stripped sheet metal screw. While some stripped screws tend to come out easily, some stubborn ones can give you nightmares.
So, here we’ve rounded up methods of removing a stripped screw under two categories: The easy methods and the slightly complicated methods. You can choose THE one method that’ll meet your needs. Without further ado, let’s dive in.
The Easy Methods:
Method #1) Grab the Drill and Pull
Can you reach the screw head? If the answer is yes, then that drill of yours can save you from a lot of hassle.
Place the chuck of the drill over the screw and tighten it to make sure the drill jaws have a good grip on it. Don’t forget to switch your drill driver’s transmission to reverse. Pull the trigger and take out the screw slowly and smoothly. Easy-peasy, isn’t it?
Method #2) Grip it with a Rubber Band
Pick a wide rubber band and place it on the head of the stripped screw. Then, insert the screwdriver and extract the screw with firm and gentle pressure. With the extra provided grip of the rubber band, removing the stripped screw will be a walk in the park.
The Slightly Complicated Methods:
Method #1) Screw Extractors to The Rescue
When the screw is stripped and buried deep into the sheet metal, you’ve to take some assistance. The Screw Extractor bits can rescue the stripped-headed screws from almost anywhere.
First, make sure you use the right-sized extractor bit. Then, Place the screw extractor over the screw head and use the drill to extract the damaged screw from the hole. That’s all you have to do!
Method #2) Use Rotary Tools
This method is actually more destructive than complicated. If removing that screw is your main concern and you don’t mind scraping the metal surface, then rotary tools are an option for you.
Before anything, wear your safety glasses first. After that, get a rotary tool and select a suitable angle to cut a thin slot in the screw. The tricky part is, you’ve to make sure the slot is sufficiently deep to fit a flathead screwdriver blade.
After making the perfect groove, use your screwdriver to pull the stripped screw back. Your metal surface might have been damaged in the process, but hey, you got rid of the screw.
How To Fix a Stripped Screw Hole Metal?
When it comes to metal, the process of fixing a stripped screw hole is a bit harder than wood or plastic. Here are the most convenient methods to ease the task for you.
Method #1) Try Using Slightly Oversized Screws
That’s the classic and simplest way to fix a stripped screw hole. For this, choose a slightly oversized screw that is longer and has a larger diameter than the stripped hole. After that, just use a screwdriver to tighten into the hole.
While it’s the easiest way, it might not always work. Like, if the hole has wrong angles or your metal just won’t allow a bigger screw. Then what?
Worry not! we’ve got your back.
Method #2) Thread New Threads with Tap & Die Set
Using Tap & Die set is more of a well-organized way to fix a stripped screw hole. Although the process is slightly complicated, it leaves no room for discontent.
Here’s the step-by-step procedure of how to fix a stripped screw hole in sheet metal with Tap & Die set
Step 1: Calculate the Hole Size
This is one of the most important steps of this method.
You can measure the internal width of the hole or you can do it by using a screw that fits. The estimated diameter of the screw is the diameter of the hole.
Alongside the hole diameter, you’ll need the thread count. For this, measure the thread count of a screw that reaches the bottom of the hole. Count the number of threads for every inch length of that screw. Hence, you got all the necessary measurements.
Step 2: Drill A Blind Hole
A clean blind hole is crucial to facilitate the tapping process.
Use a drill to make a clean and smooth hole that is smaller than the tap head. The blind hole provides an even surface to the tap so that it can add threads effectively.
Step 3: Start Tapping the Blind Hole
Use the thread count and hole diameter to choose the right tap size. Place the tap over the blind hole and start the threading process.
You don’t want the metal chips to interfere with the threading process. To avoid this, turn the tap one-half turn back for every full turn forward. Continue this procedure until you reach the bottom of the blind hole.
Step 4: Place the Screw
Now that you’ve created new threads up to the bottom, it’s time to place the screw into the new threads. Insert the screw slowly with the help of the tap. Once the screw has reached the bottom, your task is achieved.
Method #3) Get a Helicoil Insert
The Helicoil insert is another handy kit that is widely used to fix a stripped screw hole metal.
Below are the necessary steps for the installation of a Helicoil insert.
Step 1: Take Care of the Old Hole
Firstly, you have to get rid of the older threads. Drill out the damaged hole to make room for new threading. The kit will contain instructions so that you can choose the correct-sized drill bit.
Step 2: Select the Right-Sized Helicoil Insert
You already know how important it is to choose the right size. We’ll use the old-school method for this. Determine the measurement of the old screw that previously resided in the hole. Select the right-sized Helicoil insert based on that measurement.
Step 3: Use a Tap Set for New Threads
Create new threads with a Tap set for the installation of the Helicoil insert. Follow the previous instructions for the Tap insertion and don’t forget to use the right sized drill.
Step 4: Install the Kit
Set the Helicoil to insert into the tap with the help of the insert tool. Once it reaches the bottom, withdraw the Tap and insert tool and keep Helicoil insert inside the hole.
In the end, remove the tang with the help of a pinch. And Voila! Mission accomplished!
With all our useful techniques and tricks, you’re now pretty much an expert on how to fix a stripped screw hole in sheet metal.
Little tricks like these can make your daily life so much better. Just use the right tool for the right work and see the magic.
How to Fix a Stripped Screw Hole in Wood?
We’d recommend starting with using larger screws for wood. Those few extra threads can work like magic! Another quick way is to use wood chips. Dip the chips in wood glue and dab them on the stripped area. For better results, you can use two-part epoxy like J-B Weld to fill up that extra space. If unfortunately, none of this works, use a hardwood plug.
How to Fix a Stripped Screw Hole in Metal Door?
First of all, get rid of that stripped screw. You can use a drill machine or heavier equipment like Jigsaw. Then use a Tap set to replace a new screw. You can also use adhesives like epoxy resin and liquid nail adhesives. In unreasonable circumstances, you can buy custom-made screws from a sheet metal store.
How to Fix a Stripped Screw Hole in Aluminium?
For Aluminium, our recommendation is to use a metal screw hole repair kit. You can also use the Helicoil insert kit or use the Tap & Die method mentioned earlier.
How to Fix a Stripped Screw Hole in Aluminium Storm Door?
To fix an aluminum storm door, our recommendation is to use a larger screw, JB Weld, or the Tap & Die method.