How to Drill Into a Stripped Screw Head

Drilling strips screws in auto shop

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Once you realize that you have irreversibly mangled the head of a screw, you have to go about the business of getting it out. After all, that's the reason you got into this mess in the first place.

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Drilling Out the Stripped Screw Head

You can use any kind of drill for this process. Find a drill bit that has just enough diameter to drill out the center of the screw head. If it's a Phillips head screw, find a bit that just covers the star shape in the center.

Slowly begin drilling the center out of the screw head. It should go pretty fast. If the screw was soft enough to strip it should be nothing for a steel drill bit. You don't need to drill too deep, just far enough to disconnect the screw head from the rest of it. Usually, it will start to spin as it separates.

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Removing the Rest of the Screw

Now that you have the head drilled out, you should be able to remove the part you were working on. In this case, it was a brake disc. With the disc off you can see the stump of the old screw. We need to get that out.

Grab your Vise-Grips and attach them firmly to the stump. Slowly unscrew it until the whole thing comes out. Done!