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How to avoid screws from coming loose


We’ve seen a greater interest in DIY as a hobby, after a year and a half where we were forced to stay indoors. But more and more people have realised the sense of accomplishment you feel when building something entirely by yourself. One of the best DIY projects to set aside a weekend for is to overhaul your garage storage. And with easy-to-assemble products like those in Pinnacle’s garage storage catalogue, all you need is to grab your tools and you’re ready to go.

However, always remember to pay extra attention to your fasteners and fixings: the little things that hold your hardware together. Screws are especially susceptible to minor problems like stripping or loosening, which if left over time can grow into a major problem. Have you ever wondered how to keep your screws from coming loose? Here’s a guide to prevent it from happening.

Why do my screws keep coming loose?

Often the most common cause of loose screws is weathering with use, such as the hardware being old or used to store heavy objects very often. However, sometimes loosening occurs even with newer fasteners and fixings. If while putting together the hardware, the screw gets damaged or tightened too hard, chances are it will come loose later, and suffer stripping on its head as well. Screws used in conjunction with the wrong nuts can also come loose because of vibrations from the nut relative to the screw head during assembly. It is imperative, then, to take care when assembling your storage so the fastener supplies are screwed in correctly to securely hold the hardware together.

Another common cause for loose screws is from temperature changes in the environment, especially if you’re located in the colder south of Australia. When the temperature drops, the metal can contract leading to screws coming loose. But don’t worry, there are fixes available for this as well.

Use thread locker glue

If you’re putting together your garage storage yourself, then you must absolutely keep thread locker glue on hand to apply to your screws before fastening them. Use a rag dipped in solvent to completely clean each screw of grease and let them dry, before applying several drops of thread locker glue on the screw thread as directed. If necessary, use additional locking material on the screw hole to increase friction and ensure your screw is fastened evenly and smoothly. Clean up any excess thread locker glue with a paper towel, and you’re set!

Use the correct screws and washers

Most hardware these days comes with pre-drilled holes which are made for specific fasteners and fixings. If however you are making the holes yourself, make sure you select the correct drill bits for the length of screws you have on hand. Shorter screws are more likely to come loose as they have less threading, so if you’re unsure, go for a longer screw. Check the diameter of the screw heads as well; a smaller diameter screw may wobble and come loose when more weight is applied to it. Use the right screws for the right material, like countersunk screws for timber holes. You can also use flat washers beneath the screw head to reduce vibrations that could loosen it further.

Most of all, make sure your screwdriver technique is correct. Always hold the screwdriver perfectly parallel to the shaft and wind it in the direction of the thread, and never over-tighten your screws. Improper assembly and over-tightening of fasteners and fixings can lead them to come loose and suffer damage, as described earlier.

Find all the best fasteners at Pinnacle Hardware

The best way to keep your hardware secure and long-lasting is by using fasteners and fixings that are of the highest quality. Look for the Pinnacle range of bolts, screws and nuts the next time you’re planning a DIY project for the weekend. Explore all our products on our website, or ask for Pinnacle at your local Bunnings Warehouse.

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