Self-drilling screws are unique, multi-functional screws. They are designed to drill its own hole into metal and then form threads into the hole. Often used for attachment of steel siding or roofing, they can also be used in other applications where a premade hole is not possible or convenient. While these screws can be a great solution for your application, here are 4 things to keep in mind:
1. Length of Drill Flute
The length of the drill flute must be longer than the thickness of the material being drilled. If the material is too thick, the chips cannot escape, which will cause excessive heat and damage to the screw or mating material. The point length must be long enough to complete the drilling operation before threading starts, otherwise damage may occur.
2. Thread Pitch
For thinner sheet metal applications, a coarse thread (wider thread spacing) is recommended. For thicker metal, (3/8 to 1/2″ thick) a fine thread will work better, creating less drive torque.
3. Thread Length
The thread length of the screw should be sufficient to fully engage into the base metal, keeping in mind that the first few threads are not fully formed. Two to three threads should show on the back side of the base material.
4. Installation Tools
Specialty-corded and cordless tools are available specifically for drill screws which run up to 2500 RPMs for fast setting of screws. Standard drills or drivers may be used as well, but impact drivers are not recommended for hard joint applications that are considered structural. Depth gages are often incorporated into the nose of the tool to disengage the head after it has been properly set. Some tools may also have an adjustable clutch that will allow for proper setting torque.
Do you have an aluminum or stainless-steel application which requires corrosion resistant self-drilling screws? Checkout our ecosyn®-MRX screw!
Looking for a self drilling screw supplier, or have additional questions? Contact us at ProvenProductivity@bossard.com!