I don't tackle many DIY projects. But when I do, the most frustrating thing is knowing that I'm doing things inefficiently. I watch a YouTube video where the guy says it should take 5 minutes to disassemble. 2 hours later, I'm using my fingers to try and unscrew a bolt because I don't know how he did it in 5 minutes.

I'm there now. I don't know what to Google to help me either.

I'm working on my garage door opener and I need to remove a 5/16 screw from inside of the opener. I have no idea what tool to use. I'd normally use a socket wrench for this but it won't fit in such a small opening. I'm trying to take off the bolt that is circled in the picture below.

Any ideas? I know this is probably a simple question but it's driving me nuts.

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  • The tool you're using now could be adequate if the circuit board could be moved out of the way. Is that possible? Apr 4, 2023 at 12:04

2 Answers 2


Ratchets can be rather bulky as you've found. Combined with a deep socket in the wrong place, you aren't going to remove the fastener. Using a shallow socket and and proper length extension moves the ratchet out of the way to where it belongs.

enter image description here Straight Drive Extension

enter image description here Wobble Drive Extension

The wobble drive allows for some misalignment between what the socket is removing and the ratchet drive handle, probably what you're looking for to take care of the fact that gear is in the way.

Or you use this drive handle to convert the socket to a simple nut driver

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Then there's the time honored nut driver

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  • That wobble extension will be the most sure fire way to get past the issue, although it looks like maybe a longer extension will help get the ratchet head out of its own way. For a 5/16" hex head, a 1/4" ratchet with a long enough extension will narrow things down a bit more too
    – Jack
    Apr 1, 2014 at 22:52

Assuming you are okay with the nut falling once removed, you could try an offset ratchet wrench similar to these

offset ratchet

There are a wide variety of types, styles and price points.

 Images and links for reference only. Not an endorsement of any goods or sources.
  • I just had to do this, and this is exactly what I used.
    – Tester101
    Apr 1, 2014 at 16:02
  • 3
    Heck, you could even use an old skool box end wrench, without ratchet.
    – zipzit
    Nov 8, 2015 at 22:49

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