26 Types of Screw : Definition, Uses, Pros & Cons [Pictures & PDF]

Being aware of the types of screws and their uses is deemed essential knowledge for DIY enthusiasts. A significant role is played by screws in holding together everyday items, ranging from furniture and hobby projects to buildings. All screws are made for different purposes. Hence, understanding the main types of screws is crucial to ensure the right selection for specific applications, particularly for frequent home repairers or DIY enthusiasts.

types of screw

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What is a Screw?

A screw is a short piece with sharp-pointed metal tip. It also has helical threads around its shaft and a slotted head. It is mainly used for joining objects by twisting. They are a type of fasteners that secure materials using tools like hammers or screwdrivers.

Screws are majorly self-threading. They contribute in cutting into the material as they are turned, creating an internal thread. This helps to hold the materials together. It also prevents them from being pulled out. Each screw type has different functions. They can round, flat, short, or long.

To provide detailed information about different types of screws, I have listed commonly used screws in industries and homes. Let’s learn about each type.

What are the Parts of Screw?

The main parts of a screw are:

  1. Drive
  2. Head
  3. Threaded shank
  4. Non-threaded shank
  5. Thread
  6. Thread length
  7. Tip
  8. Crest
  9. Screw thickness
main parts of screw

Drive

These parts are also referred to as screw heads. The drive is the slot where the tip of a screwdriver fits to rotate the screw. There are various sizes and shapes of drives of screw available, so it’s advisable to have multiple screwdriver tips in a personal toolbox.

Head

The head is the top part of the screw. It allows tightening or loosening with a screwdriver or wrench. Head of the Screw is typically wider than the shank and thread, providing the fitting for the tools.

Threaded Shank

This is the tapered part of the screw where the threads and helical grooves are located. This area is responsible for creating the grip on the joining materials.

Non-threaded Shank

This is the longer part of the screw that does not have threads. In some types of screws, this part may be absent. Usually located at the top, it allows the tip of the wood screw to pull the screw into the wood, functioning similarly to a regular screw.

Thread

It is a ridge or helical spiral on the surface of a cylinder or cone. The distance between each thread of screw, known as the pitch, varies between screws. Some screws have short threads that are closely spaced, while others have larger threads that are further apart.

Thread Length

In general, screw threads can be either full or partial in length. As a result, you can find both full thread and partial screw thread options available.

Tip

This is the pointed end of the screw that enters the object you are fastening. It assists in driving the screw through the joining materials. If a screw lacks this pointed tip, it becomes a bolt that necessitates a pre-made hole. However, certain screws may be without this tip of the screw while still having threads present.

Crest

The crest of the screw thread is the main part of the thread. It can be both internal or external thread. It forms the highest point of the thread. The valley is the lowest point.

Screw Thickness

The thickness of a screw is determined by two diameters. One is the major diameter. It is the thickest part of the thread. The other one is minor diameter. It is the diameter at the base of the screw.

Types of Screw

There are a number of Screws available in the market. Each type of screw is used for specific use. Below is a list of the primary types of screws:

  1. Wood Screws
  2. Deck Screws
  3. Drywall Screws
  4. Masonry Screws
  5. Sheet Metal Screws
  6. Lag Screws
  7. Hex Screws
  8. MDF Screws
  9. Carriage Bolts
  10. Double Ended Screws
  11. Eye bolt screws
  12. Framing screws
  13. Fillister head screws
  14. Hex cap screws
  15. Hammer drive screws
  16. Lag Screw
  17. Machine Screws
  18. Oval Head Screws
  19. Pan Head Screws
  20. Particle Board Screws
  21. Self-drilling Screw
  22. Set Screws
  23. Shoulder Screws
  24. Socket Head Screws
  25. Thread Cutting Screws
  26. Washer Faced Screws

1. Wood Screws

what is wood screw

Wood screws are used for basic wood construction and woodwork projects to attach wood to wood. The coarse threads, smooth shank, and tapered head make wood screws an ideal choice for woodwork. The screw itself is self-tapping. This means it can be driven into the wood directly. The screw will require a pilot hole, or previously drilled hole, before you insert it into the wood. Wood screws have different types of thread depending on the kind of wood. Typically, wood screws that have fewer threads per inch are best for fastening soft woods such as pine, whereas fine thread screws are best used for connecting hardwoods such as oak.

2. Deck Screws

deck screw

Deck screws share similarities with wood screws but come with some additional specific features. Deck screws are specially designed for decking purposes. They serves to attach decking to a deck frame or composite decking. They are often self-tapping, enabling direct drilling into the material. Deck screws are corrosion-resistant. They also ensures enhanced durability, particularly for outdoor applications. The heads of Deck Screws are designed to countersink.

PreviewProductRatingPrice
Deck Plus 48419 Wood Screws #10 x 3', Tan, 5lb Box Deck Plus 48419 Wood Screws #10 x 3", Tan, 5lb Box 4,189 Reviews $29.47Amazon Prime

3. Drywall Screws

drywall screw

Drywall screws are specifically intended for installing drywall. Their self-tapping heads are designed to countersink effortlessly without causing damage to the drywall. These screws are great to work as fasteners. They help in attaching drywall sheets to wall studs or ceiling joists. They require a specialized drill bit that is not typically included in standard drill sets.

4. Masonry Screws

Masonry screw

Masonry screws serve as robust fasteners designed for working with masonry and concrete. They are characterized by flat tips and rounded hex heads. Typically, predrilling of holes is necessary before inserting and securing masonry screws into the material.

5. Sheet Metal Screws

sheet metal screws

Sheet metal screws are specifically crafted for attaching sheets of metal. They can be used with wood or to fasten other materials. Also their primary application is in sheet metal. Sheet metal screws have threads running all the way up to the head. This helps them easily go through sheet metal. It is Usually made from steel. Sheet metal screws are made to be self-tapping. This makes them sharp and durable. They come in wide variety of sizes, sharp points, and flat or hex heads. They are heavy-duty screws are both versatile and dependable.

6. Lag Bolts

lag bolts

Lag bolts are also known as lag screws and carriage screws. They are known for their substantial diameter and length. This enables deep penetration into wood or other materials. These bolts are exceptionally durable. They also has a corrosion-resistant coating. This helps them to ensure that they remain intact despite exposure to the elements or construction corrosives. Their primary purpose is to create sturdy connections. They are commonly utilized in decks, walls, and other outdoor structures. Carriage bolts is a type of lag bolt which excel at fastening thick wooden pieces together. This helps in offering enhanced security. Their round head design makes them tamper-proof. This makes them ideal for outdoor structures in public areas. Installing lag bolts often requires additional tools and a predrilled pilot hole for proper insertion into materials.

7. Hex Bolts

hex bolts

Hex bolts are commonly used to secure wood to metal, especially in furniture assembly. They have a hexagon-shaped head. Also Hex Bolts have small threads and a smooth shank. They are ideal for interior projects. But they can also be found in steel or galvanized versions for outdoor applications. Properly fastening hex bolts may require the use of both a drill and a wrench.

8. MDF Screws

mdf screw

MDF screws are widely utilized in crown molding, as well as in the construction of bookcases and shelves, and their alternatives. MDF stands for Medium Density Fiberboard.

9. Carriage Bolts

carriage bolts

Carriage bolts are specialized bolts used for fastening metal to metal or wood to metal. They are distinguishable by their shallow mushroom head. They also have a shank that is rounded along its entire length. The design of a carriage bolt features a domed head. This prevents loosening from one side and reduces the risk of the bolt being pulled through the wooden construction. It Utilizes a domed head nut. This further ensures that the carriage bolt remains secure and locked from the unprotected side.

10. Double Ended Screws

double ended screw

Double-ended screws are a type of threaded fasteners. They are employed to create concealed joints usually positioned beneath the object. They are utilized to join two pieces of wood or two movable parts together. They have two pointed ends. They can be inserted into two surfaces. This helps in forming hidden joints.

These headless screws feature rotating threads on both ends. It can be either wood screws with machine screws on both ends or a combination of wood screws. Due to their easy attachment and detachment, double ended screws are user-friendly and convenient to use.

11. Eye bolt screws

eye bolt screws

At one end, an eye bolt has an eye-shaped loop. It has threads at the other end. They are used to attach an eye to a structure. It makes tying ropes easy.

Eye bolt screws are made of sturdy metal. It offer stability and strength. This helps to allow objects to be easily lifted. It also helps the objects to be pulled with the help of a rope. These screws helps to connect points for various applications, including anchoring, pulling, pushing, or hoisting.

12. Framing Screws

framing screws

Framing screws are versatile screws suitable for sheet metal, wood, composite decking, and cement fiberboard applications. They can work with various materials. It includes hardwood floors to brittle ones.

They are similar to circular saw blades. They avoid sawdust from reaching the edge of the screw hole. They are commonly used in outdoor projects like kitchen cabinet installation and deck building.

13.  Fillister Head Screws

Fillister head screws

Fillister head screws, also known as cheese head screws, are slotted head machine fasteners with larger heads. They are ideal for attaching metal or wood to metal and commonly used in tool manufacturing and automotive applications. The large, deep heads are suitable for counterbore holes and reciprocating and slot drives.

14. Hex Cap Screw

Hex cap screws

Hex cap screws have a six-sided perforated hex head. It also has a washer face on the bearing surface. They are used to fix wood or metal to wood. These type of screw are ideal for interior home improvement projects. Hex cap screws include a flat washer under the head for precise application and find extensive use in docks, bridges, road structures, and buildings.

15. Hammer Drive Screws

Hammer drive screws

Hammer drive screws are self-tapping screws with rounded heads and no slots. They are used for attaching nameplates, wall signs, and sealing drain holes. They are used for corrosion-resistant tubular structures. These screw are similar to nails. They are driven into holes using a hammer or mallet for fast assembly. Successful installation may require a small pre-drilled hole.

16. Lag Screws

Lag screws

Lag screws are robust fasteners commonly used in construction to join pieces of wood for heavy-duty applications. They come in hex or square shapes with thick threads, capable of holding up heavy workpieces.

Due to their long length, lag bolts provide a durable connection, making them suitable for materials exposed to heavy force or bearing heavy loads. They are heavier than traditional wood screws. They are also distinct from ordinary wood or sheet metal screws.

17. Machine Screws

Machine screws

Machine screws are a type of fasteners. It comes with a socket in their head. It is used to turn with a screwdriver. They are widely used in industries like electronics, engineering, and manufacturing. Its main task is to hold machine parts together.

They can easily fasten a tapped hole to a surface using a nut. This creates a secure connection through tensile loads. They typically have pointed ends for connecting metal parts. Machine screws come in various materials, including nylon, brass, stainless steel, and carbon steel.

18.  Oval Head Screws

Oval-head screws

These screws have undercut or trim heads with shorter lengths, providing a longer thread grip. Oval-head screws are somewhat countersunk, with the head about halfway above the surface, featuring a rounded finish top. They are commonly used to cover switches and enhance the product’s appearance. Oval-head screws are available in two types: rounded head screws and Phillips oval head screws.

19. Pan Head Screws

Pan head screws

Pan head screws are a common type of non-countersunk screw head. They are mainly used in wood. They can be self-tapping, self-drilling, or machine screws. With wide heads and a flat bearing surface, they sit on top of the material they fasten to. The deeper drive slot, due to their larger diameter and higher edges, enables increased torque without risking screw damage. Some pan-head screws have single cuts in slotted heads, compatible with any screwdriver. They are used to secure metal components, such as machinery and automotive engine parts.

20. Particle Board Screws

Particle board screws

Particle board screws are full-length threaded screws, offering greater engagement and higher pulling force due to their longer threads. They are specifically designed for composite wood. Also they are like laminated particle board or craftwood. Particle board screw are commonly used by cabinet makers in domestic and commercial joinery.

They are similar to drywall screws. Particle board screws come in shorter lengths. They are ideal for lightweight applications. This makes them easy to carry and handle. These screws remain popular among cabinet makers for both domestic and commercial joinery purposes.

21. Self-Drilling Screw

self drilling screw

Self-drilling screws feature a highly sharp pointed end that functions like a drill bit, cutting threads and creating tap holes during installation. They don’t need pilot holes because of their drill-like tip. These screws are commonly used for quick drilling in both metal and wood. The screws can be identified by their point and flute tip, allowing them to drill and tap their own holes in harder materials, which saves time and effort. Their distinct point curves at the end, resembling a twist drill, making them easy to find.

22. Set Screw

set screw

A set screw is used to secure one object within or against another, like fixing a pulley or gear on a shaft by applying pressure and/or friction. It is threaded into a hole drilled in two objects, eliminating the need for a nut. The projected end of the set screw presses firmly against the second object, functioning like a clamp. These screws are typically headless and fully threaded to sit completely inside the hole.

23. Shoulder Screws

shoulder screw

Shoulder screws are screws that fit into one part and create a freely rotating pin joint connection with another. They have a large diameter shank. It is just below the head and a smaller diameter for the threaded length. This design allows a shoulder screw to be securely fitted to one part without locking the other, providing axial clearance. They offer versatility by acting as a shaft for rotating items, such as shoulder bearings.

 24. Socket Head Screws

socket cap screw

A socket cap screw is a machine screw. It has a cylindrical barrel-shaped head and a hexagonal socket. The internal wrenching feature allows for use in locations where external fasteners are not preferred. They are ideal for fastening below the material’s surface and create strong and reliable joints. These screws are corrosion-resistant. They provide an attractive and high-quality finish.

25. Thread Cutting Screws

Thread cutting screws

Thread cutting screws have sharp edges because the hole depth is slightly longer than the screw length. This arrangement prevents metals from getting locked inside the device. These screws are commonly used with wood and metal. Their purpose is to reduce internal tool stresses, making them suitable for extremely hard materials. Unlike thread-forming screws, they lack a cutting edge, making them more suitable for materials with low compressive strength.

26. Washer Faced Screws

Washer-faced screws

These screws act as springs. It reduces the distance between the nut and the screw head. Washer-faced screws are available in various types and sizes. Some types have teeth that penetrate the surface, securing the screw head into the workpiece. The washer face is located just below the head. This provides a smooth bearing surface for easy tightening.

Conclusion

From wood screws and deck screws to specialty screws for machining, woodwork, or metalwork, selecting the appropriate fastener is crucial for a smooth project. With various types available, choosing the right screws for your materials ensures the best results.

I hope this article has covered everything about “types of screws“. If you have any doubts or questions on this topic, feel free to ask in the comments. If you found this article helpful, please consider sharing it with your friends.

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