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How to Remove a Stripped Allen Screw from a Faucet?

How to Remove a Stripped Allen Screw From a Faucet
Written by Lewis Turner

It’s really easy to damage a screw by putting pressure the wrong way. It’s even easier with Allen screws. The material of the screw corrodes over time and gets easily stripped when you apply force. This gets especially tricky with a faucet or some narrow places your tools can’t easily reach.

However, there are multiple ways you can recover your stripped Allen screws from your faucet without damaging anything around. Join us as we explore a couple of ways you can safely remove a stripped Allen screw from your faucet.

7 Easy Methods to Remove a Stripped Allen Screw From a Faucet

Method 1: With an impact driver

Step 1: Gather tools

  • Impact driver
  • Safety glasses
  • Hammer
  • Screwdriver/drill

Step 2: Insert and tighten a flathead driver

Step 3: Make sure the screw head doesn’t have any loose dirt. You don’t want to tighten up the screw, so check if the bit is in the right direction

Step 4: Wear safety glasses and place the driver a bit snugly into the screw head

Step 5: Hit the end of the handle with a hammer a few times so that the bit sets into the screw head. The impact driver head also rotates and loosens the screw

Step 6: Remove the stripped screw with a screwdriver or drill

Method 2: With pliers

Step 1: Gather tools

  • Locking pliers/vise grip pliers

Step 2: Grip the screw on both sides with vise grip pliers or locking pliers

Step 3: Twist the screw left and right until it’s loose enough to pull out

Method 3: With a cobalt drill bit

Step 1: Gather tools

  • Two cobalt drill bits
  • Drilling machine

Step 2: Find a cobalt drill bit with a diameter big enough to fit into the screw head slot

Step 3: Drill through the center of the head until the bit passes through the screw head. Do the step slowly and cautiously so you don’t make it difficult for yourself

Step 4: Swap the cobalt bit for one that will match the screw head diameter when you reach the base of the screw head

Step 5: Position the drill on the hole that you made and use the new drill bit to drill out the head of the stripped screw

Step 6: Continue to drill the screw head until you get to the inside diameter. Pop the drill bit out from the handle at a slow pace

Step 7: Remove the allen screw from the faucet. You may have to wiggle the handle to get the job done

Method 4: With rubber bands

Remove a Stripped Allen Screw from a Faucet With rubber bands

**Photo Courtesy: YouTube

Step 1: Gather tools

  • Rubber band
  • Screwdriver

Step 2: Place your rubber band over the stripped allen screw and put the screwdriver into the screw head

Step 3: Extract the screw with slow and firm pressure

Step 4: Apply hard but with a slow force or you will chew up the band

(Pro tip: Put some steel wool onto the screw head if you don’t have a rubber band. This also helps provide some grip to extract the screw.)

Method 5: With a hammer

Remove a Stripped Allen Screw From a Faucet - With a hammer

**Photo Courtesy: YouTube

Step 1: Gather tools

  • Screwdriver
  • Hammer

Step 2: Place a screwdriver onto the screw head. Provide a couple of taps with the hammer so that the screwdriver is set into the screw

Step 3: Continuously strike the screwdriver once you are sure it is set into the screw. The driver will push deeper into the screwhead for a good grip

Step 4: Turn the screw with the screwdriver once the tool is firmly set in and you have the grip. This will allow you to remove the fastener from the faucet

Method 6: With spot-weld a nut

Step 1: Gather tools

  • A nut
  • Welding machine
  • Wrench

Step 2: Pick a nut that is similar to or slightly smaller than the stripped screw

Step 3: Weld the nut onto the screw

Step 4: Remove the screw with a wrench once the weld is done

Method 7: With a screw extractor

Step 1: Gather tools

  • Screw extractor
  • Drill driver

Step 2: Chuck your screw extractor in a drill driver with the burnisher end facing out

Step 3: Slowly reverse the drill with the burnisher engaged in the screw head

Step 4: Drill into the screw head for about 1/16 inch

Step 5: Turn the driver around so the extractor section faces outside

Step 6: Squeeze the trigger slowly while you press the extractor in reverse on the screw head. You will feel engaged with the screw head and it will come out slowly.

What to do if the screw has no head?

Step 1: Gather tools

  • Drilling tool

Step 2: Put a positioning hole with a center punch

Step 3: Pick a tool to drill. The drill should feature a left-handed direction to unscrew

Step 4: Drill the screw until the shaft is outside

Step 5: Take the shaft out

Step 6: Put a positioning hole with a center punch to remove the remaining parts of the screw broken inside

Step 7: Use a drill smaller than the screw size for the drill so the screw thread isn’t damaged

Step 8: Unscrew with a tool that features a left-hand direction. The screw breaks when the direction is reversed, so you need to turn the tool gently

Step 9: Keep drilling until a small amount of the shaft is exposed to the outside. Use the tool gently to unscrew out the shaft in the left-handed direction

What to do if the heads are severely stripped?

A slightly bigger Torx driver with a hex or a flathead is the perfect tool when your screw head is too stripped.

Flathead screws do have sharp edges and they dent faster. Be careful that you don’t end up breaking anything.

An important note is that your driver can be harmed when you try this method. Don’t forget to take your time or you will need a replacement before you will be bale to complete the job.

FAQs

Q. What happens if a screw is stripped?

Stripped screws are often old, so you can’t get a good grip when you use a drill or a screwdriver to remove them.

Q. How do I remove a stripped screw by hand?

You can’t remove a stripped screw by hand in most cases. Try one of our methods mentioned above.

About the author

Lewis Turner

Market Researcher

Lewis has been a contributor to FaucetsReviewed for the last five years. After graduating in Marketing and Business Administration, he joined a multinational farm that used to be a leading manufacturer of plumbing fixtures and appliances. His professional experience opened doors for him to the diversity of the industry. His deep insights and product analysis add to the site’s authenticity. He is an avid reader and spends most of his past time studying. Lewis is also a trained photographer. He does the most photography of the site. His in-depth reviews are highly informative and insightful.

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