How To Remove A Bolt That Is Stripped?

Well while trying to loosen up a bolt we use most kinds of things wd-40, grease but the major problem starts when you strip up a bolt. So in the post, we will know how to remove a bolt that is stripped.

Rusted bolts are a common sight, particularly for those who work outside. Machine bolt heads can oxidize to the point where you can’t tell they’re there. The nuts that secure carriage bolts can also rust, making removal impossible.

How To Remove A Bolt That Is Stripped?

how to remove a bolt that is stripped

A stripped bolt is one whose head has been rounded due to age or misuse. Sockets and wrenches cannot grip the rounded edges of the bolt to gain leverage to turn it. Stripped bolts are commonly formed when a bolt is rusted on, or when a bolt is cross-threaded.

It will be necessary to use a sharpened screwdriver or small chisel. Position the tool blade where the bolt head meets the adjacent part surface. Tap the sharpened blade into the gap between the bolt head and the part with a hammer.

The bolt should begin to back out of the hole as you tap. It is possible that you will need to move your tool point to the opposite side of the bolt head and repeat this action several times. If you strike the tool too hard, the bolt head will break off.

Cause of Stripping of bolts

how to remove a bolt that is stripped

Some of the reasons due to which bolts gets stripped are-

Screws with the incorrect bit size

When it comes to screws, one of the most common ways to strip them is to use the wrong tool, such as a screwdriver or drill with a head that is too small for the screw.

This applies excessive pressure to the center of the screw head, where it is weaker, and the metal begins to bend and break. This first cause can be avoided by simply using the correct size bit to manipulate your screw.

Bolt Overtightening

When it comes to bolts, overtightening is the most common way to strip them. A screw is much easier to deal with than a stuck bolt. Overtightening the bolt weakens the metal and causes it to fail.

Steps and Tools Required for Removing The Bolt

This is how to remove a bolt that is stripped

  • Oil for penetrating
  • Set of socket wrenches
  • Wrenches
  • Pliers for locking
  • Hacksaw

Steps To Remove Stripped Bolts

To how to remove a bolt that is stripped follow these steps

1. The first step is to apply penetrating oil to the bolt.

2. Apply the penetrating oil to the affected bolt and leave it for as long as the directions specify. Using the socket wrench, try to loosen the bolt.

3. Tap the side of the head with a hammer if the bolt is threaded into an assembly and does not move.

4. If the bolt head or nut is rusted and won’t turn, spray it with penetrating oil, wait, and then loosen it with the appropriate size wrench. Again, if the head or nut is excessively oxidised, the wrench may be unable to engage the shape and slip.

Removing Broken Head of The Bolt

how to remove a bolt that is stripped

Most stripped bolts and nuts can be removed using this method. This method involves making two to three cuts in the bolt head or nut. The goal is to cut just enough to almost completely through the head of the bolt or nut.

Then, using a chisel and a hammer, hit the cuts a few times to split the nut or bolt and release the tension. When it comes to nuts, you can usually just split it off the bolt, clean up the threads, and replace it. With bolts, you can grab the bolt head with locking jaw pliers and turn the bolt out.

Using Auto-Tools


A very effective way to grip a damaged bolt, nut, or stud is by using an external bolt extractor tool.

These sockets have internal spiral teeth with a slight internal taper and are made of high-strength steel.

Fitted onto a rounded-off bolt head or broken-off stud, the extractor must be hammered firmly into place. Then it can be turned using a conventional 3/8″ or 1/2″ drive ratchet or breaker bar.


Hopefully, you now have a better understanding of how to remove a bolt that is stripped, a stripped screw head, or any of the other causes of a bolt or screw that refuses to budge.

I hope this information helps you understand why this occurs in the first place and how to avoid it in the future.

There are products available to assist with this, but common household items can also be used (like the rubber band trick.) At the risk of sounding repetitive, your main concern here should be avoiding further damage to the bolt or screw. Take care not to rip the head off, and don’t strip it any further.




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