How to Remove a Broken Set Screw

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Broken set screws can be difficult to remove as set screws are used to hold a lot of parts together. If its parts are incomplete or have been broken prior to removal, it makes it more difficult for you to take it out. You need to soften the set screw prior to removal in order to prevent damages in the threaded hole where the screw is located or placed. To do this, you will need a few tools and materials to release the set screw from its installation.

Things You'll Need

  • Allen wrench
  • Carbide drill bit
  • Cutting fluid
  • Screw extractor

Turn the set screw’s head in a counterclockwise direction using an Allen wrench. Give the screw a few minutes to cool down in case it jams in the hole where it is placed. Turn the set screw in a clockwise direction to achieve a quarter turn before you completely remove the screw.

Install the carbide drill bit in the drill motor’s chuck in case its head breaks off while you attempt removal in Step 1. Make sure that the drill bit is smaller than the set screw’s diameter.

Continue to drill slowly into the broken set screw’s shaft. Apply more cutting fluid to your drill bit once smoke starts to form.

Take out the carbide drill bit from your drill motor when you have a 1/4-inch-deep hole that is drilled into the shaft of the broken set screw. Place the screw extractor into the drill motor’s chuck.

Reverse the drill motor and set the extractor’s tip into the hole that you just drilled into the set screw. Push your drill motor towards the extractor while you slowly press the drill motor’s trigger. Take out the broken or damaged set screw from the threaded portion.

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