Different Types of Screw Threads and Terminology
From professional contractors to the DIYers at home, virtually every individual performing a construction, remodeling or decorating project will use screws and fasteners. These small tools come in many shapes and sizes, typically labeled using terminology that the average homeowner or novice repair servicer may not be familiar with.
At All Points Fasteners, we understand that learning and memorizing the different types of screw threads can be confusing. To help you identify the type and use of various screws, we’ve created this helpful screw thread terminology guide that you can quickly reference any time you need to select a specific screw and screw thread measurement.
What Are the Different Types of Threads on Screws?
If you’ve ever felt lost walking down the fastener aisle of the hardware store, you’re not alone. The types of screws you need for a woodworking project like building a table are different from the screw types and sizes you would use when building a deck. Refer to our list of the different types of screws to help you identify which is the right fastener for your job:
- Woodworking: Woodworking screws are some of the most common types of screws. Used for connecting two or more wooden objects, woodworking screws feature a tapered shank with sharp threading to dig into the wood.
- Drywall: Although they can be used for woodworking, drywall screws are designed for use on drywall projects. However, the wrong-sized drywall anchor screw could damage pure plaster walls. The drywall screw size, length and weight must match the type of wall or ceiling drywall being used. Drywall screws for metal studs or hardwood, when used in cabinet work, are fine thread and twinfast which features two threads. They typically have a sharp point and a black oxide finish. When drywall screws are used in wood studs or soft woods (in cabinetry), they feature coarse threads.
- Machine: Machine screws are a common type of screw used in machining applications to connect two or more metal objects. They fit in with corresponding nuts or tapped holes that have the same diameter and number of threads.
- Lag: Also known as coach screws, a lab screw is a type of screw that forms its own thread in pre-drilled holes and is usually used to fasten metal to wood.
- Gutters and siding: Screws used for gutters and siding are designed to provide a stronger hold, typically coated with a weather-resistant material and available in finishes to match the gutter or siding color.
- Security: Security screws are unique in that they do not have an operable head like other screws, which protects them from being removed or tampered with. To install or remove these screws, special tools are required.
- Self-drilling: Self-drilling screws are available as “magnetic” and “non-magnetic” stainless steel varieties that are used for metal-to-metal and wood-to-metal applications. Roofing screws are an example of self-drilling screws.
- Self-piercing: Self-piercing screws have powerful penetration capabilities because their threads are machined down to the end of the point. They can require fewer tools and help with faster installation.
- Self-tapping: Self-tapping screws are threaded to create their own holes when installed. They form a matching thread in whatever material they are installed into. Self-tapping screws like sheet metal screws may be used in HVAC applications. Self-tapping deck screws are often coated with a corrosive-resistant material, such as ceramic.
- Thread-forming: Used with plastic materials, thread-forming screws feature two separate threads: one high and one low. This makes the pullout strength higher while also ensuring plastic does not crack or otherwise break.
- Type U: Type U screws have a unique spiral thread, and they are typically fastened into a plastic or metal casing material via a hammer instead of a screwdriver.
If you still have questions about which type of screw you need, our expert staff is ready to help you match the screw to the project.
What Is a Screw Thread?
The thread of a screw is the helical shape that runs around the cylinder of the screw. It converts rotational movement into linear movement and can include a variety of differences, like the shape of the thread, its angle and the size of the pitch — the space between the crests of each thread. Each of these subtle and small characteristics can make a significant difference in the performance of the screw and its applications.
Screw Thread Terminology
Knowing the different screw types and sizes is helpful, but to accurately select the right screw for your project, you’ll likely need to know a little about how screw threads work, as well. So, how do screw threads work? Like the screws themselves, screw threads are designed to meet the needs of specific applications.
You can try to find a screw thread chart that outlines all of your different options, but what you really need is a guide to screw thread terminology that answers all your questions and provides a comprehensive rundown of different screw and bolt thread types and why they matter.
To help you make the best investments in fasteners for your next project, here’s a thorough guide to screw thread terminology:
- External Threads: External threads (ie: male threads) mean the threads are on the bolts or screws. Threads are sometimes on the nuts rather than the bolts or screws.
- Internal Threads: Internal threads (ie: female threads) mean the threads are on the nuts rather than the bolts or screws.
- Machine Screw Threads: Machine screw threads are unique in that they are specially designed to mate with threads on nuts or threads present in tapped holes. Not self-tapping threads.
- Spaced Threads: Spaced threads are designed to form their own threads in pre-drilled holes. You’ll most often find spaced threads on self-tapping, wood and coach screws.
- Lag Screws: Lag screws are just one example of screws that form their own thread in pre-drilled holes. Typically, coach screws are used to fasten metal to wood.
- Self-Tapping Screws: Self-tapping screws are threaded to create their own holes when installed. They form a matching thread in whatever material they are installed into. This makes using self-tapping screws incredibly efficient.
- Thread-Forming Screws: Used with plastic materials, thread-forming screws feature two separate threads: one high and one low. This makes the pullout strength higher while also ensuring plastic does not crack or otherwise break.
- Type U Screws: Type U screws include an unusual spiral thread that is most often driven with a hammer into materials like plastic and metal casings.
- Wood Screws: Wood screws feature a tapered shank with sharp threading.
Additional Fastener Terminology
Here are a few additional terms related screws and threading that are helpful to know:
- Major Diameter: This refers to the diameter of a screw including the raised helix’s height like an imaginary cylinder around the thread. It is measured using a slot gauge or a caliper rule. You can only measure major diameter with an external thread screw
- Minor Diameter: Minor diameter is a screw’s diameter measured at the base or root of the thread at the innermost part of the screw. You need specialized equipment to measure the minor diameter accurately.
- Effective Diameter: The effective diameter is essentially the average of the major and minor diameters. It is measured halfway up the raised helix, and, again, you need specialized equipment to get an accurate sense of a screw’s effective diameter.
- Pitch: The pitch is the distance between two threads on the same screw.
- Crest: The crest is the height of an external thread. Or, you can find the crest by subtracting minor diameter from major diameter. The crest is the difference between the two.
- Thread angles: The thread angle is the actual angle of both flanks of a screw. Symmetrical threads indicate that both sides of the thread are angled to the same degree. It’s common for thread angles to be referred to as simply “the flank.”
- Coarse and fine threads: The terms “coarse” and “fine” refer to the distance between the crest of each thread. Smaller gaps create fine threads and larger ones create coarse threads.
At All Points Fasteners, we offer an unmatched selection of different types of screw thread options, as well as different types of screw heads and other features. We often work with service contractors in the HVAC and gutter industries, as well as do-it-yourself enthusiasts who want to achieve professional-grade results with their projects. No matter why you need different types of screw threads, we want to offer access to the type of screw you’re looking for.
Why It’s Important to Get the Right Screw Thread
Not all screw threads are going to work with all applications. Each one is tailored to different tasks and different material sizes. Some will require pre-drilled holes while others have sharp designs meant for drilling directly into softer materials like wood. Other screws vary in thread spacing, which is important for various characteristics of the screw. If using any bolts or nuts, you’ll need to make sure they match the screw’s spacing.
By paying special attention to these characteristics, you can more readily ensure that your choice of screw provides appropriate strength and performance for the application.
Free High-Quality Fastener Samples From All Points Fasteners
Using our quick reference guide, you can effortlessly determine which screw thread is right for your application. If you’re still uncertain about which screw is right for you, we encourage you to request a free sample of our stocked items or reach out to us and talk with an expert. We’re ready to go above and beyond to help your source the exact fasteners you need for your project. Browse our site today to discover the best high-quality fasteners in the industry and visit our blog for more helpful advice Call All Points Fasteners today to speak with a knowledgeable staff member who will be happy to answer all your questions.
When you’re taking on a large project like building a deck or framing a new room, you’ll need an ample supply of screws and other fasteners. If you’re wondering about the different types of screws and when one will work more effectively than another, All Points Fasteners is here to help.
We offer multiple types of screws and have all the information needed to help you use them properly. We’re here to help you get your projects done right and done fast.
How Does a Screw Work?
The world of screws is vast, and you’ll find no shortage of different options when you shop for screws for your next project. How does a screw work?
A screw has the same overall shape as a nail, but it includes a spiraling groove travelling around and down the shaft. The head has several options, including hex, pan, flat and round. Drives can be slotted or made with a Phillips head design for driving.
When you need to hold two materials or objects together, the groove helps keep the screw in place and the bond secure. To drive the screw into a material, you’ll need a screwdriver or drill that’s compatible with the head design.
There are many different types of screws, and while their exact uses differ, what a screw does best is hold two things together. What are different types of screws used for? Here’s a primer on the different types of screws available to you, as well as some key information as you evaluate what types of screws will work best to meet your needs.
What Is a Screw Used For?
Screws are fasteners for all sorts of construction projects, large and small. The reason there are so many different types of screws is that there are so many different ways objects and materials need to be fastened.
Sometimes screws are classified by the material they are used to fasten. For example, you might find you need concrete screws for fastening objects to concrete, wood screws for fastening objects to wood, or drywall screws for fastening objects to drywall. No one screw or fastening could possibly serve as a one-size-fits-all solution, because there are simply too many different needs and applications for screws and fasteners.
What Are the Different Types of Screws?
Because of how many different ways there are to use screws, you’ll find there are tons of different types of screws. Here are just a few of the different kinds you’ll find when searching for the right solution:
These are just a few of the different types of screws. You may find that the screw you need is classified into one of the categories above, but it’s also categorized by its drive type (Phillips, slotted, combination, star, etc.) or by the shape of its head (oval, flat, button, round, pan, etc.). In some cases, you may find a screw is classified by a combination of terms. For example, you might find that you need a slotted flathead metal screw.
What Is the Difference Between a Self-Tapping Screw and a Normal Screw?
With most screws, you’ll need to drill a pilot hole that creates threads and helps guide the screw into a secure spot. That’s not the case with self-tapping (or self-drilling) screws. When you choose self-tapping screws, there’s no need for a pilot hole. The screw creates its own threads as it is installed and remains tightly in place despite any activity or vibrations.
What’s the benefit of self-tapping screws?
Self-tapping screws save tons of time when you’re working on a significant project. For example, if you’re working to fasten objects and you need to use several dozen screws to get the job done, choosing self-tapping screws can significantly decrease the amount of time the project takes you. This is incredibly important in large construction projects where getting the project done on time is of the utmost importance.
These screws are also reliable, as they hold materials together firmly and have a long service life. Installing self-tapping screws with a coating can also prevent discoloration of the material due to rust or corrosion, making these fasteners ideal for harsh environments.
Get the Screws You Need at All Points Fasteners
At All Points Fasteners, we work each day with service contractors to ensure they have the screws they need to deliver outstanding results. We specialize in tracking down even the most difficult-to-find fastening solutions — so our clients always have access to exactly what they need.
You find nothing but products of the highest quality in our selection, as well as affordable pricing that helps your project stay under budget. We provide domestic quality at an imported price. If you can’t find the right part for your project, let us know and our experts will point you in the right direction. We’re committed to your satisfaction, so we’re always happy to work with you to find the products you need.
Different Screw Head Types and What They Are Designed For
When you picture a screw, you might imagine a Phillips head or a slotted screw. Those are two common screw drive types, but there are so many other different screw drives in the world — and each offers unique value and benefits.
If you want to know more about all the kinds of screws, All Points Fasteners will explain your options. Here’s a look at different types of screw heads for you to consider as you search for the perfect fastener head type to quickly and effectively complete your work.
What Are the Different Types of Screw Heads?
The different screw heads include:
- Phillips tamper-resistant.
- Square recess.
- Square recess tamper-resistant.
- Torx tamper-resistant.
- Torx Plus.
- Torx Plus tamper-resistant.
What Are Screw Head Types Designed For?
Screw head varieties are designed for various capabilities, including tampering prevention, stability during installation, reliability in application and strength for high-torque insertion. We’ll explain the features and benefits of each option so you can decide which you need:
Slotted drive screws are perhaps the simplest you’ll find. These screws have a straight line through the middle of the head and are driven using flat head screwdrivers or drills with flat head bits. They are common for projects that use hand-driven tools or require little torque.
The challenge with slotted screws — common though they might be — is that it can sometimes be difficult to stabilize the screw during installation. That is, it’s easy for your screwdriver or drill to slip when driving a slotted screw. For that reason, slotted screws are still commonly used — but they’re generally on the decline, especially for contractors and others who need to drive many screws as quickly as possible.
What is the best type of screw head? Many would say the Phillips head screw, characterized by a pointed tip, tapered flanks and rounded corners. The Phillips screw is more commonly used than a slotted screw because it’s a lot more stable with four contact points. The Phillips head design was made to perform better with screwdrivers.
Most anyone has a Phillips-head screwdriver sitting around they can use to drive Phillips screws, and the sizing of Phillips drill bits and screwdrivers is relatively simple and straightforward. You’ll come across #1, #2 and #3 Phillips heads, though #2 is the most common size.
A Phillips tamper-resistant screw is just like a Phillips drive screw with one big exception. It includes a small pin in the center of the screw head that prevents — you guessed it — tampering.
Phillips tamper-resistant screw heads are a little more obscure because you have to have the right tools to install and remove them. Also, tamper-resistant screws aren’t nearly as strong as regular Phillips head screws. They are difficult to use in high-torque applications and cannot be made to meet high strength standards.
Square recess screw heads have a square-shaped socket and protrusion with a slightly tapered tool and socket. This style is becoming increasingly popular for a good reason — the tools used to drive them very rarely slip out of place and are easier to insert.
If you’re interested in working as quickly as possible at woodworking and construction sites, square recess screw heads might be your best bet. They come in two standard sizes — #2 and #3.
Square Recess Tamper-Resistant
This style of square recess screw head is similar to regular square recess screw heads with one key addition — a small pin in the center that prevents tampering, just like the tamper-resistant Phillips head screws have.
Quadrex screw heads are a unique blend of Phillips heads and square recess heads. They are relatively rare, though they provide a great deal of stability, allowing those using them to work quickly. You can use either a standard Robertson or Phillips tool with a quadrex screw or a quadrex tool that increases the surface area between the fastener and the tool for better torque handling.
These screw heads are like Phillips heads, though they have four additional contact points that provide greater stabilization. The Pozidriv screw head has eight contact points altogether formed from two intersected crosses. It’s also unique from Phillips heads because of its 45-degree radical indentations.
It’s rare to find Pozidriv screw heads in the United States, as they are much more commonly used in Europe.
Torx screw heads have a six-pointed star shape and are unique and recognizable among screw head types. This is an entirely new design that’s gaining in popularity and is often used in the construction and manufacturing of electronic products.
Like the other tamper-resistant screw head styles, this means the screw head design includes a small pin to prevent tampering.
Torx Plus screws are much like Torx screws, but their design creates a larger contact area between the screw head and the tool used to drive it. This produces greater torque and greater ease in driving the screw, even at high speeds. Though this design is new, it’s becoming more popular.
Torx Plus Tamper-Resistant
With a Torx Plus tamper-resistant, you get the greater contact area for greater torque, plus the small pin in the center of the head that prevents tampering. It differs from the standard Torx Plus design because it is a five-pointed star. They are common in high-security applications, like correctional facilities.
Tri-Wing screw types are somewhere between a slotted and Phillips head. They have three grooves that are slightly curved and come in #1, #2 and #3 sizes, though this screw head type is exceedingly rare.
Spanner screws feature two holes or two slots used to lock into a screwdriver or drill bit for installation. They are used to avoid tampering.
Learn More About Screw Head Types at All Points Fasteners
At All Points Fasteners, we offer a vast selection of different screw heads with varying shapes, dimensions and specifications — all so you enjoy fast, easy access to the fasteners you need for the project at hand. We even specialize in helping our customers track down unusual and hard-to-find fasteners. If you can’t find what you’re looking for in our selection, get in touch with our customer service team for assistance.
Browse our selection of different types of screw head shapes to find your perfect fastening solution today. For more information, contact us online or call 800-483-6354.
How to Use Self-Tapping Wood Screws
When executing Do-it-Yourself projects, quite a few folks get perplexed about what fasteners to use to perform their job. There are a lot of choices…so many dimensions to decide upon. What length should the screw be? How thick of a shank do I need? Philips drives? Torx drive? Hex Head? What type of point do you need? Zip? Tek Point? Type 17 point? There is a reason why each fastener has a certain specification or attribute and if you don’t know how your screw is going to perform you will end up blaming the screw if it doesn’t perform how you want it to when the real cause was how it was used.
All hardware stores which are truly really worth the name have an extensive assortment of wood screws and tools, bolts and nails for utilizing these items. Adding more difficulty, each type of tool and securer may possess a somewhat different method of correct usage.
Let us take a glimpse into how you will make use of wood fasteners as well as what you do not do with wood screws. At All Points Fasteners, we have a variety of self-tapping wood screws for do-it-yourself projects.
What is a wood Screw?
As the name suggests, wood screws are used when you are doing work with wood. Many of your wood screws will be produced from a metal that isn’t likely to react with the resins as well as treatment chemicals within the wood. Some metals will leave a rather unpleasant-looking stain if they come into contact with particular chemicals or resins. It used to be that you only had two choices of material for wood screws – plain carbon steel or carbon steel with zinc plating. Sometimes you could locate stainless wood screws. Now, however, you can find screws for wood, usually deck screws, with special plating to protect them from chemically treated wood. They are generally available in 500 and 1000 hour salt spray tested.
There are a few selections when it comes to wood screws or rather, screws you use in wood. There are wood screws that require pre-drilling since their point isn’t sharp or hard enough to self-start. They have coarse threads so that the wood will fill in between the threads and help to prevent them from pulling out of the softer wood or particleboard. Generally, they have a prominent smooth shank (sometimes called a shoulder) to help pull together the two pieces being fastened.
Another option is what is referred to as a Type 17 point, which has a very sharp point and the thread will go all the way to the tip of the point with finer threads, generally 18 threads per inch. These work wonderfully in the harder woods. As you put pressure on the screw and turn it using a drill it’ll cut into the wood and create its very own hole. These are typically rather tight-fitting and don’t often tear loose. They have a cut at the tip of the point so that the displaced wood has an avenue of escape and keeps the wood from splitting.
The vast majority of wood screws may also have an area of non-threaded metal just beneath the head. This is so that you are able to allow the top of the screw to slide through the top piece of wood so you are able to tightly fasten the two bits of wood together.
For DIY projects to go easily, make certain that you pick the proper screw with the right features for the wood you’re going to be using and for the correct application. You should also determine if you need to use of the self-tapping variety or if you will need to have to pre-drill. Just about all wood screws will work for just about all woods, however getting the best fastener for the job is definitely ideal.
What Does a Wood Screw Look Like?
A wood screw has shorter threading that is not throughout the whole body and fewer pitches, made for projects involving lumber, plywood and wood materials. Compared to other screws, they are easier to drive into wood, which is why you should always use a wood screw for wood projects.
You need to make certain the materials the wood screws are produced from will be the best sort of fasteners for your project. Some metals tend to be a lot more corrosion-proof, plus most can leave a terrible spot if you use them in wood because they react to the sap still left in the wood. Before purchasing self-drilling wood screws, do some study and ascertain exactly which type of screws you will be using.
Are Wood Screws Self Tapping?
Wood screws are self-tapping because they can tap their threads into the wood material. Before you can use a wood screw, you must drill a pilot hole, because self-tapping screws are not self-drilling. This pilot hole must be smaller than the screw, so the threads can go into the wood material and create a secure fastening.
How to Use Self-Tapping Wood Screws
The first thing you need to do when using wood fasteners is to get hold of individual tapping anchoring fasteners and regular wood screws. The self exploit fastener generally is a lot easier to install because it requires much less to do the job.
All you need to do is make use of either a Philips or flat head screwdriver. Set the point of the fastener on the spot you wish it to be and begin screwing. As you turn the screwdriver, the fastener should cut into the wood and make a hole for itself completely — no drills required.
Afterward, there is the standard self-tapping wood fastener. You will require a drill for doing so. You will have to mark out all of the places where you need to place fasteners and drill a hole in the wood, which is the correct size for the fasteners you will be using. Then, you need to go along and, while employing the proper kind of screwdriver, screw all the screws into place.
What Are the Risks of Self-Drilling Wood Screws?
The hazards of using self-tapping wood screws are:
- Not getting all of them in straight: An individual tapping screw might go in the wood skew because of the grain of your wood or from unequal pressure on the screwdriver as it’s flipped into the wood. If you help a drill afterward, you run a slightly decreased chance of going askew, as you are not going to place a lot of pressure on your drill to bite into the wood, and the drill isn’t possible to get pushed close because of the wood grain.
- Making the pilot hole too big: As a substitute, you risk utilizing a drill bit that’s a touch too large for the anchoring screws you will be utilizing in your do-it-yourself project. Using an oversized drill bit means that the fastener is not going to hold well, so the fastening won’t be secure.
Contact All Points Fasteners About Wood Screws Today
Picking the greatest kind of fastener for any job may not be as simple as it appears when the professionals get it done. There are truly lots of details to look at before you commit to a specific wood fastener or nail for your specific do-it-yourself project.
If you’re not sure which kind of self-drilling wood screw you need, ask the team at All Points Fasteners for help and get it right the first time. Between our quality products and helpful customer service, you will find what you need with ease. Get in touch with us by completing our contact form or by calling 800.483.6354.
How to Install Drywall Anchors
When hanging artwork, shelves, TVs or other heavier items on hollow walls, you can drastically increase their security by installing wall anchors.
Anchors reduce the chance of the hung materials becoming too heavy for the screw to bear, and they also help to cut down the chances of damaging the surrounding wall. Once you sort out the details, installing drywall anchors and screws is an easy task anyone can accomplish with the appropriate tools.
What Types of Drywall Anchors Can You Choose From?
Before drilling headfirst into your wall, you’ll need to analyze the different types of drywall anchors to determine the best fit for your situation.
Some popular models include:
- Hollow Wall Anchor: Also called “Molly” anchors, hollow wall anchors will often see use in medium-duty applications. They’re formed using a machine screw that’s been threaded through a slotted metal sleeve. Tightening the screw will cause the sleeve to expand, and its spread will rest against the inside of the wall to disperse the screw’s load. These anchors can usually hold around 50 pounds in 1/2-inch drywall.
- Toggle Bolts: “Butterfly” anchors are a classic type, and they’re arguably the strongest type of drywall anchors. The metal sleeves utilize two spring-loaded wings that open inside the wall. You need to fold back the wings and then insert the unit into the wall, and it will then spread back out to create a sturdy hold. Different models give you different holding capacities. Slender bolts can hold up to 30 pounds, while thicker iterations can hold more than 50.
- Plastic Screw Anchors: You’ll most often see plastic anchors for light-to-medium usage, making them exceedingly common. Its cost-efficient hardware that gradually expands as you thread the screw.
Tips for Installing Drywall Anchors
Once you’ve decided what type of drywall anchor you’re using, you’re ready to get to work. Here are five tips to consider when going through the process.
1. Find the Right Spot
As opposed to other mounting jobs, you can avoid using studs and instead pick anywhere that you feel comfortable. If you’re hanging multiple items, measure out the distances accurately to avoid overcrowding. Mark the desired spots with a pencil, then break out your drill.
2. Use an Appropriately Sized Drill Bit
Think about drilling a pilot hole like playing the Price is Right — get the closest without going over.
Your drill bit should nearly mirror the diameter of the anchor, but try to keep it a tad smaller. That slight size disparity creates a better hold when compared to larger holes, which will be too loose for the anchor to grasp. If you’re feeling weary about the process, start at a reasonably small drill bit size, test the fit and move up to the next size until you find your proper match.
3. Prepare the Screw and Anchor
If you’re using toggle bolts or hollow wall anchors, begin threading the screw in before installing them to give it a good headstart.
4. Secure the Anchor
You can then firmly press the wall anchor into the wall. For toggle bolts, you should hear the wings snap into place. When installing plastic anchors or molly anchors you should be able to slide them all the way in without any difficulties. If your plastic anchors need a push, you can lightly tap them with a hammer to get them flush with the wall. Be careful not to swing too hard, as you could damage the wall.
5. Drill the Screws
You can then drill the screws into place. Approach the screws from a 90-degree angle to ensure they go in straight, and drill slowly to prevent stipping the unit. The screw head should sit flush with the anchor head.
Find Your Drywall Anchors and Screws at All Points Fasteners
Now that you know how to install drywall anchors and screws, you can procure the best hardware for the job at All Points Fasteners. We offer free samples, monthly deals and custom requests to create a stress-free experience. Browse our different types of drywall anchors today and contact us to ask any questions you might have.
Screws are vital to the success of many different projects, whether you’re a do-it-yourself enthusiast or a service industry professional. However, you should consider some critical areas before you invest in screws for your next job. In this guide, we will answer all of your questions about screws:
- Does it matter how screws are made?
- What are screws made of?
- What does the coating on screws do?
- How do I decide what screw to use?
All Points Fasteners has the strongest screws and fasteners you need for your projects. Contact us today to learn more.
How Are Screws Made?
There are two different manufacturing processes for making screws. Most screws are made with the thread rolling method. Machining is used to make small or specialized screws that cannot be made by thread rolling.
The first step in making a screw with the thread rolling method is called “cold heading.” A wire is fed into a machine to straighten it, then cut it to length. The machine then cuts the head into the desired shape.
There are three techniques that can be used to cut the blank screw to give it threading:
- Reciprocating die: There are two flat dies — one is stationary, and the other moves back and forth. The screw is rolled between the two dies.
- Centerless cylindrical die: The screw is rolled between two or three round dies to create the thread.
- Planetary rotary die: As the screw is held stationary, several die-cutting machines spin it around.
Between these two screw manufacturing processes, thread rolling is better. The screws are more durable and high quality, avoiding weaknesses in the metal. The screw threads are placed precisely as well, so all screws are the same.
What Are Screws Made Of?
Screws can be made from all sorts of materials, yet there are some that are more popular than the others. The four most common screw materials are:
- Steel: This is by far the most common material used for manufacturing screws, and there’s a simple explanation for why — steel is cheap. The only drawback to steel is that it is weaker than some of the other options on this list.
- Copper: Copper screws are good for fighting against corrosion. If a screw is going to be exposed to the elements, copper helps to ensure the screw performs durably over the long-term.
- Aluminum: Aluminum isn’t as durable as other materials, but it does have one thing going for it — its weight. Aluminum is just about the lightest weight fastener you can find.
- Titanium: When you need a blend of strength and lightness, go with titanium. You’ll often pay a premium for titanium screws, but that extra cost pays off big time when you need a fastener that is robust but doesn’t weigh much.
What About Coatings?
Screws are often coated to make them even better by giving them desirable qualities. Screw coatings open up a vast number of possibilities when you’re seeking the right fastener for a specific situation. For example, screws can be coated in copper, ceramic, zinc and other materials, which can provide extra strength, extra protection against corrosion or even an aesthetic quality that might otherwise be missing.
For example, a zinc-plated steel screw will better fight corrosion than a steel screw on its own. Likewise, a copper-plated screw may look more attractive in a prominent place than a steel screw would.
Which Screw Should I Use?
No two kinds of screws are alike. Before you buy screws for your next project, consider these points to make sure you are getting the right kind.
First, identify what materials you are screwing into. Different kinds of screws are made to fasten different materials. For example, the strongest wood screws are made for joining two pieces of wood. Once you’ve determined the material, measure its thickness. You’ll want to get a screw that is long enough to pass through the material and at least halfway into the next for a secure grip.
The next consideration is material. This decision will be based on where you plan to use the screw — indoors or outdoors. For an indoor project, you may be able to use a less expensive screw that looks pleasing if it will be visible. Outdoor projects need certain kinds of screws since they will be exposed to temperature changes and moisture. Then, consider the coating options to gain even more ideal qualities.
Find High-Quality Screws at All Points Fasteners
Now that you know everything you need to know about screws, it’s time to find the perfect screws for your next job. Are you ready to secure high-quality materials for your next job? Find them in our selection at All Points Fasteners.
We pride ourselves on offering a vast and varied selection of screws made of different materials that match particular specifications and feature various types of coatings. When you’re looking for something specific for a unique job at hand, we have the solution. If we happen to not have the screw you need, we’ll find it for you.
In addition to our wide selection, you’ll find competitive prices, fast shipping and outstanding customer service when you choose All Points Fasteners. We are dedicated to making sure you get exactly what you need as quickly as possible.
How to Use Tek Screws
Tek screws are among the most popular screw types, and for a very good reason — they are a broad category that includes many different self-drilling screws. Tek screws are commonly used in the electrical industry and other service jobs where there’s a need to attach metal to metal or wood to wood. Tek screws are especially helpful when you are fastening in volume. Naturally, the self-drilling nature of Tek screws makes the work go much faster.
If you’re considering Tek screws for an upcoming job, here’s a look at what they are, how to use them, as well as the different types of Tek screws you can find.
What Are Tek Screws?
Tek screws are incredibly common due to their self-drilling or self-tapping nature. Whether you’re a service contractor or a do-it-yourself enthusiast, time is precious — and Tek screws help you save time.
Each Tek screw features a carving piece on its tip, which is what makes self-drilling possible. This means you don’t need to create a pilot hole before the fastener, and it also means your work moves forward efficiently.
Plus, Tek screws are versatile. While they are often used in the electrical industry, you can apply them to almost any project where a Tek screw’s self-drilling ability will be helpful.
The Ins and Outs of Using Tek Screws
The best way to use a Tek screw is with an electric screwdriver or drill. You can choose to create a pilot hole, which will ensure your Tek screw goes in straight. Just make sure your pilot hole is slightly smaller than the Tek screw, or else the screw’s grooves won’t be able to catch.
Many choose not to drill pilot holes, though, as one of the significant benefits of using Tek screws is that you don’t need to. Still, drive Tek screws as slowly as possible, which will help them drive straight even without a pilot hole. Tighten the screw, but make sure it’s not too tight. Tightening too much can lead to the head stripping, which will make it difficult to remove the Tek screw if necessary.
Different Types of Tek Screw
You’ll find a wide range of diverse types of Tek screws. Your application is unique, which is why you need to find a Tek screw that’s well-suited for the job. Some of your options will include:
- Low-Profile Tek Screws: Low-profile Tek screws are perfect when you need to limit how far the screw’s head protrudes from its hole.
- Hex Head Tek Screws: Hex heads always provide greater stability during installation. Find Tek screws with hex heads when you’re engaged in roofing and other applications that require self-drilling through aluminum or other metals.
- Pan Head Tek Screws: Pan head Tek screws are perfect for light-duty applications, and they diminish the need to create a pilot hole.
This is just a sampling of the many types of Tek screws available on the market. Once you understand the job at hand, you’ll be able to identify the perfect Tek screw for completing the task effectively and efficiently.
Get the Tek Screws You Need at All Points Fasteners
Are you wondering: What is the use of a Tek screw? When using Tek screws, you enjoy speed, efficiency and stability that isn’t always available with other types of screws. Now that you know how to use Tek screws, it’s time to find the perfect products.
At All Points Fasteners, we carry a massive selection of fastening solutions — Tek screws included. When you choose All Points as your fastener supplier, you can always count on competitive pricing, high-quality products and industry-leading customer service and support.
Find the Tek screws you need for your next job today. Contact us if you have any questions.
Self-Tapping Screws – Sharp Point or Drill Point
Since starting this fastener blog several years ago, one of the most common requests we hear is “I want self-tapping screws”. “I want self tappers”. We hear this more often than not. We have written several articles on what is the best terminology to use when ordering your screws to make sure you get the right parts and not have to go through the time and expense of returning them to your supplier.
Summer is here and the building season is booming so this would be a great time to go over this again. Even some employees at fastener supplier houses are confused as to the correct usage of ‘self-tapping screw’ Self-tapping is referring to the threads and NOT the point of the screw. For a more detailed description of fasteners that are often referred to as ‘self-tapping’, please click here to watch our informative video.
Most of the time, when we hear someone ask for a self tapping screw, they really are looking for a self-drilling screw. One that has a point sometimes described as looking like a shovel, but in fact, is actually a small drill bit. The confusion comes with so many different screw names describing the same screw. Some are brand screw names that have just been used for so long that they have become synonymous with the part. Some screw names have just been used incorrectly for so long, that you kinda have to give in an say ok. Like “dove” which is now commonly referred to as “dived”.
Here are the most commonly used terms for the screw that looks like this:
• Tek Screws
• Self-Drilling Screws
• Self-Tapping Screws
• Bit Tip Screws
Here is a really helpful Self-Drilling Screw Chart that can be used for submittals.
Please feel free to contact us with your questions regarding self-drilling screws, often called tek screws. If we don’t have the information you need, we’ll do our best to point you in the right direction!