Types of Screwdriver Tips

Written by gregory hamel
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Types of Screwdriver Tips
Screwdrivers come with a variety of different tips. (Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images)

Screws are one of the most common types of fasteners used to build homes and goods such as appliances and electronics. During home repair projects, you are likely to encounter screws you need to remove; screwdrivers come with a variety of different tips that allow them to remove different types of screws. Sometimes a single project will require more than one type of screwdriver.

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Flat-Head Screwdrivers

Flathead screwdrivers, or slotted screwdrivers, have a flat, line-shaped tip. Flathead screws are among the most common types of screws, so you are likely to encounter them in home repair projects or when taking apart equipment. The sizes of the slots on flathead screws can vary significantly, so you may need flathead screwdrivers of several different sizes to remove all the flathead screws you encounter.

Phillips Screwdrivers

Phillips screwdrivers have a cross-shaped tip. Phillips screws are exceedingly common in a wide range of applications. It may be possible to remove a Phillips screw with a flathead screwdriver in some cases, but using the wrong type of screwdriver can damage screws and make them more difficult to remove.

Square-Head Screwdrivers

Square-head screwdrivers have square-shaped tips. Square-shaped screws are advantageous in that the screwdriver head fits snugly into the screw so the tool is less likely to slip out of the screw and damage it as you're applying pressure.

TORX Screwdrivers

TORX screwdrivers have tips that look like six-pointed stars with rounded edges. TORX screws are commonly used in electronic devices.

Hex Screwdrivers

Hex screwdrivers have hexagon-shaped tips. Hex-headed screwdrivers are an alternative to Allen wrenches or hex keys, which are hexagonal pieces of metal with a 90-degree bend that are commonly used to remove hexagonal screws and bolts.

Tamper-resistant Screws

Some screws are designed with pins in the middle that make them impossible to remove without a special screwdriver. Phillips screwdrivers, square-head screwdrivers, hex screwdrivers and TORX screwdrivers also come in versions that can accommodate tamper-resistant screws.

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