How to Remove Stripped Bleeder Screws


Bleeder screws are used in a number of different vehicles and power tools. These screws fit tightly into a socket and keep the fluid inside from leaking out. The purpose of bleeder screws is to provide small adjustments for hydraulic and fluid systems. Because these screws may be used frequently, they are susceptible to stripping, rendering them useless. If you are ever faced with a stripped bleeder screw, however, there are a number of different solutions you can try to free it.

Things You'll Need

  • Degreaser
  • Penetrating lubricant
  • Rag
  • New screwdriver
  • Rubber band
  • Hammer
  • Vise wrench
  • Drill with bit
  • Screw extractor kit

Spray degreaser on the stripped bleeder screw. Clean off as much grease, dirt or debris as possible with a rag. Spray penetrating lubricant on the screw. Let this soak in for about half an hour.

Place a rubber band over the head of the screw. Press a new screwdriver into place on top of the screw so that it grips the rubber band. Turn counter-clockwise. The rubber band will help the screwdriver grip onto the screw.

Place a new screwdriver on the screw head. Tap the handle on the screwdriver lightly with a hammer. This will drive the screwdriver into the screw and allow it to grip better. Turn counter-clockwise.

Grab the screw head with a pair of vise grip pliers. Tighten the end of the pliers .Turn counter-clockwise.

Drill a hole in the head of the screw, smaller than the screw shaft and about 1/4 inch deep. Tap a screw extractor into the head of the screw. Attach the screw extractor handle and turn counter-clockwise until the screw comes out of the hole.

Tips & Warnings

  • Always use a new screwdriver when trying to extract stripped screws. It will grip the screw better than an older screwdriver.
  • Don't try to heat the bleeder screw, as it may ignite fuel or other flammable vapors.

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