Removing a screw with stripped slots?


Old 05-06-01, 12:56 PM
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We're trying to replace a washer in the hot water faucet in our shower. We got the water turned off with no problem, but when we tried to unscrew the faucet handle in the shower, the screw was frozen up. After lots of WD40 and tries with several different screwdrivers, we found that the slots in the screw head were stripped - rounded out big time. Any suggestions on how to get that little stinker unscrewed? We called Home Depot, and their advice was to get a hacksaw and cut off the faucet (thus requiring a whole new faucet) - I'm hoping for a less drastic solution than that. Any advice would be appreciated - thanks!

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Old 05-07-01, 01:18 AM
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removal of stripped screw

1. Try to get a visegrip around the screw edgewise

2. Can you cut a new grove in the screw with a metal saw?

3. Drill a hole into the screww and use an "easyout" (which is a reverse threaded screw available at better hardware stores)

4. Reluctantly, destroy the least valuable part that will allow you to remove the screw.

Good luck!

Old 05-08-01, 07:52 AM
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Thanks for the tips. I don't think #1 and 2 will work - the screw is set back into the faucet handle about 1/2-3/4 of an inch. I wonder if the hot water running has caused the screw to expand? Of course, even if I could get it cooled off to contract, I still couldn't just unscrew it at this point - a screwdriver won't even catch anymore on where the slots used to be. We'll probably just end up calling someone to fix it for us now - I can see myself trying to drill a hole in the screw and making the problem worse than it is already!

Old 05-09-01, 07:06 AM
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Drilling the screw out is the way to go, after which you should be able to remove the handle and stem, there will a replacement for the entire stem. (make sure to take the old stem with you when getting a replacement)
Cutting the handle will make a mess of the finish, that is unless you are able to turn the fosset to he open position and get the saw on the stem.

Good Luck

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