If you look into any junk drawer or toolbox, you will find a flathead screwdriver. In fact, it is arguably the most common tool on the planet. Although it has been supplanted in many instances by screw types such as the Phillips head, square drive, hex, and Torx, you will still need to use a flathead from time to time. The flathead screwdriver features a handle with a flat, wedge-shaped tip, which fits into the slot in the head of a flathead screw. Different screwdriver sizes are available for different screwheads, so it is important to select the proper size for each job.
Unlike nails, which can be bent and shaped to fit any fastener, screws are made of metal and require considerable effort, expense, and skill to mold from raw material. Screws are used in a wide variety of applications, including woodworking and fastening electronic components. They also are used to hold together weapons, armor, and a variety of other items. In addition, many modern appliances are assembled using screws.
A flathead screw has a head that is usually flat, although you will sometimes see raised countersunk heads as well. The head is often used for decorative purposes, and it may be recessed to allow room for an electrical connector or to create a flush surface with surrounding materials. Most electrical work is done with a flathead screw, and you will probably find them in most of the outlet covers in your home.
One of the advantages to the flathead screw is that it can be driven with almost any type of screwdriver, although it is most often used with a standard, slotted screwdriver. The flathead head is less susceptible to camming than other screwhead designs, and it provides a better grip on the screwdriver. However, the screwdriver must be kept clean and dry to avoid rusting. A wet, grimy screwdriver is more likely to slip and cause damage or injury.
Another advantage to the flathead screw is that it can take more torque than other screw types without stripping. This is a result of the larger contact surface on the head and the flat bearing area that provides more strength.
The flathead screw is a very versatile tool, and there are several variations on the basic design. Some of the more popular include:
Before you pick up your next screwdriver, make sure that it is the correct size for the job at hand. You should also check that it is the proper screwdriver type for the fastener. If you do not have the right tool for the job, it will be difficult to loosen or tighten the screw. Additionally, a screwdriver that is the incorrect size will be uncomfortable to use and can wear out quickly.
Regardless of what type of screwdriver you use, it is a good idea to keep it clean and dry. This will reduce the chances of corrosion and extend the life of the tool. It is also a good idea to store your screwdrivers in a tool box or magnetic storage system to prevent them from getting lost. Flat Head Screws