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The Best Screw Extractor: Your Easy Way out When It Comes to Broken Bolts

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As a technician, repairman, or even just a homeowner, you’re bound to see broken bolts. Damaged screws happen when the grain of the pin gets stuck in the hole. Thus, this causes it to snap off if you try to pry it out.

Many repairers view this problem as familiar and easy to solve. That is the case mostly because they have an assortment of tools to use. However, for the average homeowner, this can be scary. That is why having the best screw extractor is a must if you’re handling damaged bolts. Stay tuned to find out more!

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The Root Causes of the Problem

Before we go on to talk about the reliability of screw extractors, let’s talk first about the problem. Damaged bolts usually occur as a result of irresponsibility, accidents, or old age. When it comes to old age, damaged pins happen when the mechanical piece is worn out.

You can see this in a lot of examples. For starters, your very own vehicle can be a good illustration of this. Automobiles use hundreds if not thousands of bolts and nuts. If not securing the engine block, you can use it for screwing the axles and the wheels.

When it comes to your car, you’re bound to remove a few screws, especially when you’re troubleshooting the engine. If you have a car that’s ten years and older, there’s a high chance that the bolts can snap off.

However, always remember that old age is uncommon of the two previously mentioned. Irresponsibility or human error mostly cause broken bolts and stripped bolt holes.

Unforeseen Damage Of Best Screw Extractor

Another cause that you may not have any control on are accidents. Based on my experience, I needed a screw extractor after my glasses broke from a motorcycle accident. The temples snapped off, causing the pins by the hinges to tear.

There are many cases where this can happen. Car accidents and factory accidents are frequent instances as well. The best you can do here is to take caution. However, if ever it does happen, a handy screw extractor is a lifesaver!

 Best Screw Extractor

Human Error, a Lack of Understanding, and Irresponsibility

Let’s face it if we ever witnessed a broken bolt, the one at fault is most probably the one who inserted the screw. For starters, let’s get one thing clear: Bolts go through final bolt holes that are designed to accommodate them.

That rule applies to any item that uses bolts and nuts. That can be your vehicle; it can be a robot or electronics such as computers and consoles. With that said, I have a story where a friend of mine mishandled his laptop. Of course, this led to broken bolts and stripped bolt holes.

My friend of mine encountered a problem on his laptop. Mainly, the power button is not responding with the monitor. Because of this, he assumed that the wire connecting the power button towards the motherboard of the laptop was snapped off.

To inspect the wiring of the laptop, he needed to disassemble the plastic casing it had. He had to remove the battery, the keyboard, the ram, and other hardware inside. As we all know, laptops make use of many little screws.

Wrong Placements

In the end, my friend’s hunch was correct. The connecting wire snapped off, and it only needed to be reconnected. However, one solved problem led to a bigger one. What my friend didn’t do was label the screws as he removed it.

As we said earlier, each bolt has a particular screw hole. No matter how identical the pins may seem, wherever you took them out, you must place them back in. My friend didn’t know this, so he screwed each bolt randomly until completed.

It looked pretty good until a few days. However, after that, the laptop’s hinge shattered upon opening it. The plastic soon cracked, and a few of the screws splattered due to the force.

 Best Screw Extractor

Stripped Bolt Holes and Snapped Bolts

 Best Screw Extractor

Had my friend knew how bolts and its holes work, he could’ve avoided paying $50 for repairing the laptop. Because the screws were not in the right positions, two problems occurred. Notably, we call this problem as stripped bolt holes and snapped bolts.

There’s a big difference between the two. However, it’s important for you to understand that both happen because of the same reason. Snapped bolts usually happen first. As you can see with any screw, it has a spiral structure that aligns with its respective hole.

Now, imagine if you put a pin that has a different spiral pattern with that of a different hole. That would force the screw and destroy the grains inside. From the outside, the screw might seem tight and beautiful. However, the over time, this will cause great consequences.

The first that will happen is the bolt will potentially snap. Even if it’s at rest, the bolt receives a lot of tensile force because it’s stuck inside. Every time you apply force on the area surrounding it, the screws can potentially break. The bolt hole that it’s screwed into will squeeze the pin, snapping it off.

Once the pin is snapped off, the next problem might be a stripped screw hole. The stripped bolt hole is a screw hole that had its grains ruined. That is a result of the contact made by the wrong pin.

As a result, the bolt holes will be too loose to put a screw on. In worse scenarios, the grains of the pin hole flattens. Thus, it’s only a hole that doesn’t have any use for pins.

Tips When Buying Screw Extractors

Screw extractors are necessary, but treat it only for emergency purposes. The best cure is prevention. Extracting a pin is made possible thanks to these tools. However, treating stripped bolt holes can be difficult to fix.

With that said, it’s still a must to have these extractors because accidents always happen to everyone. Damaged locks can occur even if the screws match the holes. In the end, there are some things that we can’t control.

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Before buying, make sure to consider a few factors first. Some of the factors to keep in mind are versatility, effectiveness, and material.

For me, versatility is the most important factor. We handle so many items nowadays that make use of different bolt sizes. You’ll never know if your cell phone will have a broken pin or your vehicle. Since these are handy emergency tools, it’s best to have all sizes.

 Best Screw Extractor

Our Top 5 Picks

With Zelar Made’s Screw Extractor Set, you get four pieces of stripped screw removers made with high speed/hardened steel. The four screw removers come in different diameter ranges making the set extra versatile.

Zelar Made claims to have tempered the screws twice making it extra hard. You can use it on bolt or bolts of any type and size. It also comes with a carrying case and a 100% money back guarantee should you not feel satisfied with the said product.

We like

  • It is a two-step drill bit and an extractor all in one product.
  • It comes with a 100% money back guarantee, unlike other products.
  • It also comes with a carrying case that does not look low quality.
  • No need to bother with gift wrapping if you plan to give this to someone else or you just want easier storage for your tool shed.

We do not like

  • It might have a hard time removing broken/rusted bolts and screws.
  • The teeth might not be thick enough.

On the other hand, this model of damaged screw remover claims to be ideal for stubborn screws and bolts with broken heads. Similar to Zelar Made’s, it is also hardened steel tempered twice for extra hardness (62-63 HRC).

However, what makes it different is that it is highly compatible with quick chuck systems for drills. So you can simply just “chuck” it into your drill. But most importantly, it comes with a limited lifetime warranty. Just contact the manufacturer.

We like

  • The pieces fit perfectly into almost any drill.
  • Like Zelar Made, it also comes with a storage case.
  • It does its job at extracting even broken and rusted screws.

We do not like

  • It might not be ideal for stainless steel screws, bolts, and other industrial usages.
  • The carrying case might not be as high quality.

As for this damaged screw extractor, the pieces come with high-quality chrome vanadium steel and full heat treatment. It comes in five different sizes that are also ideal for extracting damaged bolts and screws.

The pieces are groove designed with round flutes, making them very efficient and easy to use.

We like

  • With the design of the parts as well as the sizes included in the set, it is a versatile tool to have in your tool shed.
  • It is easy to utilize.
  • It incurs little to no damage at all while in use, due to its good quality.

We do not like

  • It does not come with a manual/instructions.
  • It might not be ideal to use with a powered screw driver.

Ilova’s Stripped Screw Extractor comes with four screw removers ideally meant for damaged ones. It comes with hardened alloy steel, it is also at 62-63 HRC range for hardness and is very easy to use when removing broken screws.

It features a self-centering tip and a rapid acting helix which makes it work faster and more conveniently. Lastly, it also works well with almost any surfaces and types of screws. However, be careful not to use the burnishing tool tip to drill a hole.

We like

  • It is relatively cheaper compared to other products.
  • It comes with a carrying case.
  • The sizes that are available in the set are highly versatile and works smoothly with any drill.

We do not like

  • It does not come with a warranty.
  • Similar to other products reviewed, it is also not very ideal for bolts.
 Best Screw Extractor

TackLife Damaged Screw Remover and Extractor Set

And last would be, Product Stop’s Damaged Screw Remover and Extractor Set. It comes with four pieces of different sizes as well as a carrying case. But most importantly, it comes with a 100% money back guarantee.

Also, should the product end up damaged or broken, Product Stop Inc. claims to be able to give you a replacement for free.

We like

  • Product Stop offers an excellent guarantee, unlike other brands
  • It comes with a 100% money back guarantee as well as replacements for free.
  • Then, it is very well made, making it ideal for removing damaged or rusted bolts and screws.
  • Their customer service stays faithful to their words.
  • They send out the instructions/manual via e-mail.

We do not like

  • It might not be ideal for very long screws.
  • The smallest size might not be tiny enough if you plan on using it for gadgets or devices.

Our Verdict

No matter what your project is, durability and versatility are the most important factors. With this said, ​TackLife’s Damaged Screw Remover, and Extractor might be a good option for you.

Not only does it work as advertised, but its customer service is also excellent. You get money back guarantee as well as free replacements, ensuring you of your money’s worth whatever issue you may encounter.

With that said, good luck and always remember to place your screws where you took them! If you found this article informative, leave a comment to let us know what you think!





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