How to Drill Out a Bolt : Best Guide

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Anyone who’s ever tried on How to Drill Out a Bolt that it can be a real challenge. Depending on the bolt, you may be able to use a wrench or socket to try and loosen it, but if that doesn’t work then you’re left with two choices: either try and break the bolt using a hammer and chisel, or drill it out. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the best way to remove a stubborn bolt or broken bolt – using a drill. We’ll also provide some tips for avoiding common mistakes when drilling out bolts.

What are bolts?

Bolts are a type of fastener, typically made of metal, that is used to hold two or more pieces of material together. They are usually placed through holes in the materials and then secured with a nut. In some cases, bolts may also be used to secure a piece of equipment to a surface.

Types of bolts

There are three main types of bolts- standard, metric, and specialty.

How ro drill out a bolt - best way

Standard bolts

Standard bolts are tightened and loosened using a wrench. But when a bolt becomes seized or stripped, it can be extremely difficult to remove. In these cases, drilling out the bolt may be your only option.

Metric bolts

Metric bolts are sized according to diameter, pitch and length, in millimeters (mm). For example, a size of 12×1.75×30 bolt has a diameter of 12 mm, a pitch of 1.75 mm and a length of 30 mm.

Specialty bolts

Specialty bolts are designed for specific tasks or applications. There are several ways to remove a specialty bolt, but the most common is drilling out the bolt.

Materials Needed on Drilling out a bolt

Drilling out a bolt is a common DIY task that is often required when removing a stripped or damaged bolt. In most cases, the best way to remove a damaged bolt is to drill out the center of the bolt until the threads are no longer engaged. This can be done with a variety of different tools, but it is important to have the right materials on hand before beginning the project. 

Drill

A drill is one of the most versatile tools you can have in your home workshop. With the right attachments, you can use a drill to clean carpets, cut wood, and even polish metal. But one of the most common uses for a drill is to remove screws or bolts that are stuck or stripped.

If you’re trying to remove a screw or bolt and it just won’t budge, you may need to drill it out. This can be a difficult task, but with the right techniques and tools, you can get the job done.

Drill Bit

Determine what type of drill bit you need. If the head of the bolt is still intact, use a standard drill bit. However, if the head of the bolt is sheared off, you’ll need to use a left-hand drill bit so that the drill can bite into the metal as it turns in a counter-clockwise direction.

Socket

A socket that is the same size as the head of the bolt is placed over the head of the bolt. A ratchet is then placed in the socket and turned counter clockwise to loosen the bolt. If the bolt is difficult to remove, heat can be applied to the head of the bolt with a torch to make it easier to remove. Finally, a drill is used to drill out the head of the bolt

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Impact wrench

An impact wrench is a powerful tool that can remove even the most stubborn bolts quickly and easily. However, if you don’t have an impact wrench, don’t worry – you can still remove the bolt using a drill.

Lubricant

Before you start drilling, it’s a good idea to apply some sort of lubricant to the drill bit. This will help to keep the drill bit from overheating as well as making the drilling process easier.

Abrasive

In order to drill through a bolt, you’ll need an abrasive material. The most common abrasive is sandpaper. However, you can also use a grinding wheel or an abrasive cloth.

Patience

Patience is a virtue when drilling out a bolt. It’s easy to want to give up and move on to another task, but being able to drill out a bolt correctly can save you a lot of time and energy in the long run.

Safety Gears and Precautions

Drill Out Bolt

Before starting any work with the power drill, it is important to gather all of the proper safety gear. This includes safety goggles or glasses, a face mask, and ear plugs or headphones. It is also important to make sure that the area around the work site is clear of any clutter or debris. Once the area is clear and all of the safety gear is in place, the power drill can be plugged in and turned on.

When using the power drill, it is important to keep a firm grip on the tool at all times. The drill bit should also be kept level with the surface that is being drilled into. If the drill bit becomes stuck, do not force it out. Instead, turn off the power drill and use a wrench to remove the drill bit.

Drilling Out the Broken Bolt

If you have a broken bolt that needs to be removed, the first step is to drill out the broken bolt. This can be done with a hand drill or an electric drill. First, you will need to make a pilot hole in the center of the broken bolt. Next, you will need to increase the size of the hole by drilling out the broken bolt with a larger drill bit. Finally, you will need to remove the brokenbolt from the hole.

If you are having difficulty removing the broken bolt, you may need to use a bolt extractor. A bolt extractor is a tool that can be used to remove a broken bolt. First, you will need to place the bolt extractor over the broken bolt. Next, you will need to turn the bolt extractor in a clockwise direction to remove the broken bolt.

Once the broken bolt has been removed, you will need to clean out the hole that was left behind. This can be done with a wire brush or a drill bit. Finally, you will need to insert a new bolt into the hole. Make sure that the new bolt is the same size as the old bolt so that it will fit properly.

Tips and Tricks on How to Drill Out a Bolt

Assess the situation

You will need to determine the size of the bolt, as well as how it is attached.

If the bolt is holding something in place, you will need to support that object before proceeding.

For example, if the bolt is holding a shelf in place, you will need to put something under the shelf before beginning to drill. This will prevent the shelf from falling and breaking once the bolt is removed

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Choose the right drill bit

To remove a small diameter bolt, use a 3/32-inch drill bit. For medium diameter bolts, use a 1/8-inch drill bit. To remove large diameter bolts, use a 5/32-inch or larger drill bit. Drill slowly at first to avoid overheating the drill bit and breaking it off in the hole.

Drill a pilot hole .

This will help to ensure that your larger drill bit doesn’t wander when you start drilling. A 1/16″ or 1/8″ drill bit is a good size for most pilot holes. Place the tip of the drill bit on the center of the bolt head and drill straight down into the bolt.

  • Remove the drill bit and insert a slightly larger drill bit.
  • Start drilling slowly, then increase the speed as needed.
  • Keep the drill bit perpendicular to the surface of the bolt head.
  • Drill until the head of the bolt is flush with the surface of the material.
  • Remove any debris from the hole with a wire brush or other small tool.
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Enlarge the hole

Enlarge the hole slightly with a drill bit. This will give the extractor more material to grip. Break off the head of the bolt with a hammer. Place the tip of the extractor in the hole and turn it clockwise with a wrench or ratchet. As you turn, the extractor will grip the bolt and start to remove it from the hole. Continue turning until the bolt is completely removed.

Use a hand drill or power drill to enlarge the hole in the center of the broken bolt. This will give you more room to work with and make it easier to remove the rest of the bolt. With a small drill bit, carefully create a new hole perpendicular to the first one. This second hole will act as a guide for your drill bit and help keep it from slipping.

Now that you have two holes, you can use a larger drill bit to enlarge the first hole. This will make it easier to remove the rest of the bolt. Start by drilling a small hole in the center of the bolt. This will help to keep the drill bit from slipping. Next, use a larger drill bit to enlarge the hole. Continue drilling until the hole is large enough to fit the extractor through.

Now that you have drilled out the bolt, you can remove it with an extractor. Insert the tip of the extractor into the hole and turn it clockwise with a wrench or ratchet. As you turn, the extractor will grip the bolt and start to remove it from the hole. Continue turning until the bolt is completely removed.

Remove the debris

Remove the debris from the hole with a wire brush. Center the drill bit over the hole and begin drilling. Apply moderate pressure to the drill, using short strokes. When the drill breaks through the other side of the bolt, remove it from the hole. Repeat this process if necessary to enlarge the hole.

If you’re dealing with a particularly stubborn bolt, you may need to first use a smaller drill bit to make a pilot hole. Once you’ve made a pilot hole, you can then use a larger drill bit to enlarge the hole. Always be careful when drilling, and make sure to wear safety goggles to protect your eyes.

Finish up

If the bolt is stripped, you’ll need to drill out the head in order to remove it. Be careful not to damage the surrounding area while doing so. Use a cobalt drill bit and start slowly, then increase speed as needed. Always use lubrication (coolant or cutting fluid) when drilling metals.

Once the head of the bolt has been drilled out, you should be able to remove it easily. If the bolt is still stuck, you may need to use a extractor tool to remove it.

Troubleshooting

If your drill bit isn’t getting a good grip on the bolt, try using a smaller bit. If the head of the bolt is stripped, you can try using a larger drill bit.

  • Start by attaching the drill bit to the drill.
  • Make sure the drill is in the correct setting. If you’re not sure, start with a lower setting and work your way up.
  • Place the drill bit on the head of the bolt.
  • Apply pressure to the drill and begin drilling.
  • Drill slowly at first, then increase the speed as needed.
  • Once the hole has been drilled, remove the drill bit and clean up any debris.

If you’re having trouble removing the bolt, try using a bolt extractor. Bolt extractors are specialized tools that can grip onto the head of a bolt and help loosen it.

  • Attach the bolt extractor to the drill.
  • Place the bolt extractor on the head of the bolt.
  • Apply pressure to the drill and begin turning the extractor.
  • As the extractor turns, it will grip onto the head of the bolt and begin to loosen it.
  • Continue turning the extractor until the bolt is loose enough to remove by hand.
  • Once the bolt has been removed, clean up any debris.
  • You may need to use a hammer to tap the extractor out of the hole.
  • Remove any remaining debris from the hole.
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Advantaged and Disadvantages of Drilling Out a Bolt

There are advantages and disadvantages to drilling out a bolt. The main advantage is that it can be done relatively quickly and easily. It is also a good way to remove a damaged or stuck bolt without damaging the surrounding area.

However, there are some disadvantages to this method as well. For one, it can be difficult to control the drill and avoid damaging the surrounding area. Additionally, this method will not work if the bolt is too tight or if the head of the bolt is broken off.

If you are considering drilling out a bolt, it is important to weigh the advantages and disadvantages to decide if this is the best method for your needs. In some cases, drilling out a bolt is the best option, while in others it may be best to use another method.

Why this method is the best

This method is the best because it is less likely to damage the surrounding material, and it can be done quickly and easily. Plus, you probably already have the necessary tools on hand.

When to call a professional

There are a few instances where you should always call a professional to do the job. These include:

  • When the bolt is in a hard-to-reach or difficult spot
  • When the bolt is rusted or corroded and needs to be replaced
  • When you are not confident in your skills or abilities to do the job safely
  • When the bolt is holding something important in place, like a car engine

If you find yourself in any of these situations, it is always best to call a professional. Trying to do the job yourself could end up costing you more money in the long run, and it could also be dangerous.

What could happen if you don’t follow these steps ?

If you don’t follow the proper steps when drilling out a bolt, you could end up damaging the surrounding material, or worse, injuring yourself. Make sure to take all necessary precautions and follow the instructions carefully to avoid any accidents.

Conclusion

Now that you know how to drill out a bolt, you can easily remove any stubborn bolt from your home. Just remember to use the correct size drill bit and take your time. With a little patience, you’ll be able to remove even the most stubborn of bolts.

FAQ’s

Q. What is the best drill bit for drilling out a bolt?

A. The best drill bit for drilling out a bolt is a cobalt drill bit. Cobalt drill bits are made of high-speed steel with a cobalt alloy, which makes them harder and more durable than other types of drill bits. This makes them ideal for drilling through tough materials like bolts.

Q: What is the best way to remove a stripped bolt?

A: The best way to remove a stripped bolt is by using a drill bit that is slightly smaller than the diameter of thebolt. This will allow you to drill into the bolt and then use a wrench to remove it.

Q: How do you remove a broken bolt?

A: To remove a broken bolt, you will need to use a drill bit that is the same size as the diameter of the bolt. Drill into the center of the bolt until you hit the metal below. Then, use a wrench to remove the broken bolt.

Why trust Handyman.Guide?

s written by Itamar Ben-Dor, who has 25 years of experience in renovations, carpentry, locks, creation, landscaping, painting, furniture construction, and furniture renovation, works with concrete, plumbing, door repair, and more.

Itamar Ben-Dor has been in the home improvement business for over 25 years. Itamar Ben-Dor is a jack of all trades. He's worked in the renovation field for years, doing everything from locksmithing to carpentry. He's a small repairs specialist. But his true passion lies in furniture construction and renovation - he loves seeing old pieces come back to life with some new woodwork or a fresh coat of paint.

He has taken courses on many topics in these fields at professional colleges in Israel. Over the years, Itamar has also become quite skilled in gardening, carpentry, and renovations. He's worked on projects of all sizes, from massive renovations to small repairs. No job is too big or too small for him!


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