How to remove a stripped screw – 4 foolproof hacks you should try right now

DIY has seen a surge in popularity over the past year. With many Brits stuck in a rut over the successive lockdowns, some have turned to home improvements to stave off boredom. Don’t worry if you have overestimated your DIY skills, however, as here is an easy guide to removing pesky stripped screws.

If you have tried and failed to remove a screw multiple times, you might have worn away the indents on the head of it.

When this happens the screw can be even more challenging to remove as your screwdriver or drill effectively has nothing left to grip onto.

If you don’t have a fancy, albeit inexpensive, screw extractor which is a tool specifically designed to extract screws, don’t panic – there are other options.

However, if you do have a screw extractor to hand it is best to try this tool first.

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Then begin turning the screw out, even if you can only just grab the top rim of the head of the screw this method might work a treat.

Use steel wool

Stripped screws are so tricky to remove due to the lack of grip conventional tools can get a hold of.

One way to try and grip the head of your bored-out screw is to use steel wool.

Just pop some steel wool in between your screw’s head and your screwdriver and rotate as normal.

Use wide rubber bands

This is a more unusual method but it can work a treat.

Rubber bands can provide the driver bit with enough traction on the stripped screw to remove it.

Simply cut a wide rubber band then place it across the screw head, then put the driver bit on top of the rubber band.

Press down hard while you turn the screw out counter-clockwise.