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Is it possible to fix a screw that has been stripped? It is not an uncommon problem to run into when you are into the DIY projects. I personally have come across this quite frequently. I would like a solution that would be permanent, and one that doesn't involve buying new screws. How do I do this?


I'm not asking how to remove them, as asked How to remove screws with stripped heads?. I want to know how to fix it.

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A whole lot depends upon where the screw is deployed, the types of materials involved and what types loads the screw may be subjected to. Without that information your question is basically unanswerable. Add on top of that the preconditions that you have imposed and it is unlikely that any good answer can be provided. –  Michael Karas Jun 22 '13 at 18:30
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What do you mean by "stripped"? Is the slot (straight or recessed) in the head stripped, or are the threads in the screw stripped? Or is it the material the screw goes into that is stripped? –  bib Jun 22 '13 at 18:33
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May I ask why you don't want to replace the screw? –  RedGrittyBrick Jun 23 '13 at 12:28
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Even if you could, it's not going to be as strong as a new screw. A screw costs pennies; even if you barely value your time (eg consider your worth as pennies per hour), it's still a waste of it. Take it out, throw it in the garbage, and put a new one in. –  gregmac Jun 24 '13 at 12:57
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2 Answers 2

Damaged screw-head

You can repair many small metal parts using a micro welder. Alternatively (and probably far more commonly) some people use a vice and a hammer to form the damaged head into a suitable shape for the next stage ...

You can re-cut a drive slot using a suitable tool. For slotted screws this would be a file intended for that purpose

Damaged screw-thread

For machine bolts, threads can be repaired using dies or helical inserts. I'm not aware of anything equivalent for things like wood-screws.

Standard practise

I admit I can't imagine any circumstances where I would not just drive to the store and buy a new screw (and probably a better screwdriver to match).

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I found this on the web a few weeks ago. This could have saved me many times. I plan on purchasing one. http://www.amazon.com/home-improvement/dp/B002L6HJAA

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