Know Your Screws and Their Uses

Know Your Screws and Their UsesOur fastener experts at Fasteners, Inc. work hard to help you know your screws and their uses. Screws are one of the most popular and often used fasteners and although they may look alike, there are differences. Depending on your project, you will need different types of screws.

According to a Bob Villa article, there are five types of screws.

Wood Screws

Wood screws have coarse threads to grip the wood securely until it is screwed in. It is smooth just under the screw head. This allows an even tighter connection but lets the top of the shank spin freely to keep the head from not going too deep into the wood. The threaded end of the screw grabs the bottom of the wood, pulling the two boards tightly together. The tapered head sits flush or slightly below the surface of the wood. These screws are used for attaching wood to wood.

The length of the screw should let the tip of the screw to go into the bottom board by about 2/3 the thickness of that board. Screws are sized by widths varying from #0 which is 1/16 inch in diameter to #20 which is 5/16 inch in diameter. Most projects use #8 size which is approximately 5/32-inch in diameter. Finish wood screws have smaller tapered heads to screw in just below the surface of the wood for trim and molding. This leaves just a tiny hole to fill with wood putty.

They come in both interior and exterior screws. The exterior screws are galvanized or treated with zinc to resist rusting. Most of the time you drill a small hole before screwing in the screw. Some screws are self-drilling screws which have a sharp tip like a drill bit, which allows you to skip the pre-drilling step.

Drywall Screws

These screws, from 1 to 3 inches in length, are used to install drywall panels into wood, metal studs, and joists. The bugle-head countersinks into the surface of the drywall panel without tearing drywall paper covering. You don’t have to predrill holes. They drill into the wood studs or joists. If you are installing drywall over metal studs use screws for metal studs.

Masonry Screws

Masonry screws are called anchors because they’re not pointed at the tip. You will need to predrill the hole and then insert the screw. They are used for attaching wood or metal to concrete, often used to attach wood floor plates to a concrete floor.

Decking Screws

These screws are used to fasten deck flooring to the deck’s joist system. They countersink just below the surface. This exterior screw has coarse threads and a smooth upper shank and is made to resist rust and corrosion. The screw length can vary from 1⅝ to 4 inches long. Many decking screws are self-tapping.

Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) Screws

These self-tapping screws often are used for interior trim like base and moldings or bookcases and shelving. MDF screws can pierce harder woods without splitting the wood. You can either pre-drill the holes in DMF and use regular screws or use the self-tapping MDF screws.

At Fasteners, Inc. in Denver, our staff’s experience helps you know your screws and their uses for your particular project. Our goal is to provide the ideal product for your application at a fair price. We maintain the highest standards of courtesy and ethical business practice and our fastener experts work hard to ensure your complete satisfaction.

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