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How to unscrew a torx screw

Updated February 21, 2017

A six-pointed recessed star located on the screw head signifies Torx screws, which are common in the automotive and electronics industries. Corrosion on the screw head enlarges the star and makes removing Torx screws difficult with traditional tools. You should always try to remove a Torx screw with the proper tool, as the process involved in removing a stripped Torx screw will render the screw unusable. By using a combination of techniques, you will be able to successfully remove a Torx screw.

Spray penetrating oil on the heads and threads of the Torx screw. Allow the oil to set on the screw for two to three hours.

Select a Torx screwdriver that matches the size of the six-pointed Torx star.

Fit the end of the Torx screwdriver into the end of the Torx screw. Turn the handle of the screwdriver counterclockwise to loosen the screw. If the screw does not loosen or the tip of the screwdriver turns inside of the recess without turning the screw, proceed to Step 4.

Secure the .045 abrasive cutting wheel to the 4½-inch angle grinder.

Put on a pair of safety glasses.

Cut straight across the head of the Torx screw with the angle grinder to form a ...-inch-deep groove across the screw head. The heat generated by the cutting process will help loosen corrosion from the threads of the screw.

Place the tip of a flathead screwdriver in the groove you created and turn the screwdriver counterclockwise to remove the Torx screw.

Things You'll Need

  • Penetrating oil
  • Torx screwdriver set
  • .045 abrasive cutting wheels
  • 4½-inch angle grinder
  • Safety glasses
  • Flathead screwdriver
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