How To Remove A Stripped Allen Screw

Often a problem arises when a hexagon bolt is torn off and it is not possible to unscrew it with a wrench. Causes of such a problem can be a sticking effect, displacement of the parts being fastened, over-tightening when installing the hex bolt, and the use of unsuitable wrenches. Fasteners in modern technology are very diverse.

These include conventional hexagonal bolts and nuts, flat and Phillips screws, Torx sprockets, and many others. The parts with internal hexagons stand out here. They are difficult to open without the right tool. The internal hexagonal slot was first patented in 1936 by the German company Bauer & Schaurte. In foreign technical literature, such screws are usually referred to under the brand name Inbus (inbus).

Advantages of the Internal Hexagon

Bolts and screws with an internal hexagonal slot have a number of advantages over conventional fasteners. First, there is no need to leave space around the head with this slot for the fastener. It is possible to completely “sink” the screw into the part, which is very convenient for all kinds of drain plugs.

Secondly, the torque transmitted to the part can be almost ten times greater than that of fasteners with a Phillips spline. That is why the Indus slot is often used in assemblies operating under heavy loads (machine tools, road equipment).

It also allows the use of small heads for screws with large stem diameters, allowing the use of tools of the same size for the maintenance of different assemblies. Bicyclists know this well – a single hex wrench is enough to service a bicycle on the road.

Third, with the right quality wrench, it’s hard to break the notches on the inner hex. The notches are almost wear-free, the fastener can be used repeatedly, which is important for fixing all kinds of inspection hatches that require frequent opening-closing.

Fourth, the internal hex wrench is simple and cheap compared to the horn, socket, and socket wrenches of external hexes.

Finally, screws with internal hexagon heads are much safer, because they do not have sharp outer edges, and yes, they look more aesthetically pleasing.

How to Unscrew the Hexagon without a Wrench?

Of course, now the hexagonal key is not something inaccessible. In any store or car market, you can find an Allen key of any size. But is it worth buying even a relatively cheap wrench in order to unscrew a tricky screw once?

This is a problem often faced by motorists, who decided to repair their car on their own. The internal hexagon is almost always the drain plug on the gearbox and often the plugin the engine crankcase pan.

The home handyman may encounter hexes when repairing a bath faucet or ball valve – conventional fasteners just do not fit there.

And in all these cases, the size of the hexagon is quite decent. What to do? A bolt with a regular hex head will help.

The head of the bolt is inserted into the hexagonal slot and unscrewed by the rod with a gas wrench. You can also screw 3 or 4 nuts onto the threads of the bolt, wedge them into each other and unscrew them with a normal ring spanner.

When unscrewing, use the nut closest to the head and the farther one when tightening. If the size of the hexagon is irregular, the head of the bolt can be sharpened with a file or a sharpening machine.

What to do if the Hexagon is Torn off?

It happens that attempts to unscrew a screw with an internal hexagon by improvised means or with a wrench of a slightly inappropriate size lead to tearing of the facets. In this case, too, there is a solution.

If the hexagon is small, you can hammer a TORX star of the right size into it and unscrew it. If the head is available, it is worth trying to unscrew the screw with pliers, a gas wrench, or a hand vise.

A hammer and chisel are almost always helpful if space is available. The chisel should not be very sharp, and the blows should be tangential to the unscrewing side. By the way, check if maybe the threads on the screw are left-handed.

For steel bolts and screws with an internal hexagon can be welded to the head of a nut, a piece of rebar, or something similar, for which the bolt can be unscrewed. And remember, what one person has fastened – the other will always be able to unscrew.

And here is another way to unscrew problematic screws using an engraver with a cutting wheel. You can also do this on a large scale by using a hacksaw or a bolt cutter.

How to Remove a Fender on a GMC Sierra?

  • Remove any screws that attach the wheel directly to the fender. There will be six Phillips head screws attached along with the wheel.
  • Remove all of the screws that secure the fender to the hood panel using a ratchet and turn counterclockwise. There are four bolts holding the two parts together.
  • Remove all of the bolts securing the rocker panel to the fender. The fender will have three bolts attached, depending on the year of your GMC.
  • Open the truck door on the side where the fender will be removed. Remove any bolts on the post located inside the door jamb.
  • Lift up the GMC hood. Remove the bolts securing the radiator bracket to the fender. Use a socket and ratchet to remove the bolts from the fender.
  • Slide the fender and remove it from the truck.

Items you will need: Phillips screwdriver, ratchet, and Connector.

How to Remove a Fender from a 2002 Ford Explorer?

  • Open the hood and remove the three screws around the flasher using a Phillips head screwdriver. Remove the blinker.
  • Remove the two bolts that are now exposed, using a socket wrench and an 8mm socket.
  • Unscrew the three bolts along the top of the fender and the two bolts along the bottom using a socket wrench and 8mm socket.
  • Open the conductor door and remove the two bolts at the front of the door jamb with an 8mm socket and wrench.
  • Remove one bolt connecting the fender to the bumper with a socket wrench and 8mm socket.
  • Unscrew one bolt inside the fender using a socket wrench and an 11mm socket.
  • Remove the screw holding the fender liner to the fender using a Phillips head screwdriver.
  • Remove the fender.

Items you will need: Phillips screwdriver, Allen wrench, 8 mm socket, and 11 mm socket.

How to Remove a Fender on a Ford F-250?

  • Lift the hood and support it with support like a big stick. Remove the truck’s support strut by disengaging the retaining clips with a small screwdriver and pulling it out sharply.
  • Remove the headlight and turn signal light covers. Pull up the headlight retainers and disconnect the electrical connectors, then remove the mounting screws for the turn signal housing and slide it forward and out of the truck.
  • Disconnect the grille. Remove the plastic overlay at the top of the assembly by removing its retainers, removing the four upper mounting screws, disconnecting the lower half of the clips, and pulling it out.
  • Unscrew the mudguard screws in the fender and remove them. Remove the running board, if you have one.
  • Remove the bolts and clips connecting the fender to the rocker panel and radiator support, open the door and unscrew the door post bolts, then remove the top bolts along the edge of the engine compartment. Most of these bolts require an Allen wrench.
  • Detach the fender and remove it from the truck. Ask a helper to support the fender as you remove it to avoid damaging other panels on the truck.

Items you will need: Big stick, Screwdriver, Wrench, Hex key.

How to Remove a Fender from a Chevy 87 Pickup Truck?

  • Remove the front right wheel mounting nuts on the Chevy pickup using a tire iron. Lift the front right side of the truck with a house jack and place the front end of the Chevy on the jack supports. Remove the front right tire from the frame.
  • Remove the screws on the wheel housing cover on the inside and outside of the cover with a screwdriver. Remove the cover from the frame and from the wheel housing.
  • Remove the mounting screws on the edges of the wheel housing on the inside that secure the fender to the frame, using a set of ratchets. Detach the plastic locking pins inside the wheel housing using a screwdriver.
  • Remove the mounting bolts inside the engine compartment that secure the upper fender to the frame using a set of ratchets. Lift the fender and pull outward to remove the fender from the Chevrolet frame.
  • Repeat the above steps for the left fender.

Items you will need: Tire iron, Jack, Jack stands, Screwdriver, and Ratchet kit.

How to Remove a Fender on a Camaro?

  • Remove the wheel nuts from the wheel. Lift the right side of the front and remove the wheel from the Camaro.
  • Remove the wheel recess cover by removing the rivets with a flathead screwdriver. Remove the wheel from the Camaro body.
  • Remove the bolt securing the Camaro fender to the body inside the wheel housing using a set of wrenches. Place the bolts in a place where you won’t lose them.
  • Remove the bolts that secure the fender to the body inside the engine compartment using a set of wrenches.
  • Remove the Camaro fender from the body and set it aside. Repeat these steps for the left side of the Camaro.

Items you will need: Jack, Flathead screwdriver, and A set of wrenches.

How to Unscrew the Hexagon?

Whatever the reasons for the situation when a bolt stops unscrewing, the following steps should be performed before locksmithing:

Before unscrewing the hexagon, to reduce the coefficient of friction, it is necessary to open the bolt fastener with greases like WD-40, kerosene, or brake fluid. You can start unscrewing the bolt 30-60 minutes after application. You can gently tap the stuck bolt with a hammer to avoid further dislodging the thread. If the location of the fastener allows, you can heat it with a gas torch to make the metal more pliable, and the rust and dirt turned into ashes.

How to Unscrew a Torn-off Hex Bolt?

To unscrew a protruding hex key or “star” bolt, you can use the following methods:

Use a metal saw or a bolt cutter to make a neat and clear vertical cut across the head of the screw. After these steps, it can be unscrewed with an ordinary flathead screwdriver.

Using a Torx star: you need to hammer it into the recess for the hexagonal key in the head of the hardware. The size of the star should be such that its slits do not pass into the hole. Then the hardware is unscrewed with a sharp jerk. It is not recommended to use a Torx with a hole in the center, the sprocket can break off. Before unscrewing a hexagon with torn edges, a drill with drills and extractors is drilled in the center of it.

The extractor is then hammered into it, then pulled out with pliers along with the hexagonal screw. Using a drill with reverse rotation, a thin hole is drilled, then a left-handed drill bit is inserted and the fastener is unscrewed. At the same time, the rotation of the drill should be slow and the pressure should be strong.

How to Unscrew the Internal Hexagon with Torn Edges?

To unscrew a bolt connection with a through-hole, you can use a file. With it, the hexagonal metalware is bored to the next size and unscrewed with a wrench. The second method is to use a Torx. It can be used to punch a new slot and reuse the hexagonal hardware, but it can only be unscrewed later with a Torx star.

Wrap Up

Before unscrewing a torn hex, you can see through the inner axis of the hex fastener for a screwdriver, and unscrew. This method is not always convenient to get to the fastener, sometimes its location does not allow the use of a screwdriver. How to unscrew the hexagon without a wrench other ways to unscrew a bolt without a hexagon are the following: If the size of the bolt is not too small, you can use a chisel or an ordinary hammer: with them strikes at an angle in the direction of unscrewing the fastener.

The method with the use of a ring spanner or a gas spanner. If there is a problem, with how to unscrew the “plucked” hexagon, you can use an impact wrench with a nozzle. The bolt connection is unscrewed with an impact mechanism. The method of welding: a small amount of metal is welded to the fastener with a nut or any piece of rebar, with which it is then unscrewed. The extreme measure for unscrewing an internal axis hexagonal metal fastener is the complete dismantling of the fastener when notches are made with a hammer and the fastener is disassembled.

Jonathan Tim
Jonathan Tim
A bicycle geek since early childhood spent his twenties as a mechanic in bike shops. His passions include flatland BMX, unicycles, cycle touring, mountain biking, and road riding.