23 Different Types of Screwdrivers

Different Types of Screwdrivers
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

There are different types of screwdrivers because manufacturers constantly create new varieties of screws.

The most popular tool used by experts and do-it-yourselfers is the screwdriver used to drive or remove screws. These tools are available in many shapes, sizes, and sorts. 

Some screwdriver models have an inbuilt motor to drive the screws, although most are operated manually.

The motor of these goods is powered by batteries or by a direct electrical connection to a nearby outlet. 

They have sturdy steel shafts that can withstand twisting and bending. This article breaks down the various varieties to help you select which screwdrivers you need in your toolbox. 

A screwdriver is a device that can be powered or operated manually to drive screws.

The common screwdriver consists of a handle, a shaft, and a tip to insert the screw before rotating the handle.

A power drill, which is more modern and multifunctional and also drills holes, has taken the role of this sort of screwdriver in many workplaces and houses. 

The tip of the screwdriver must make contact with the heads of screws that are the same size and type to be used properly.

Below are the different types of screwdrivers;

1. FlatHead

One of the different types of screwdrivers is Flathead. A flat wedge-shaped tip on the flathead screwdriver is used to tighten or loosen screws with straight, linear notches on their heads.

This comes in every shape imaginable and has a handle attached to a steel shaft with a flattened tip. 

Even while flat head screws aren’t as frequently used in a residential buildings anymore, there are still a lot of applications for them, such as furniture construction, cabinets, and some electrical applications.

The steel shank’s tip size and length serve as size indicators for these ratcheting screwdrivers and drills.

2. Phillips

A Phillips head screw is made with an X-shaped notch that is intended to fit into the X-shaped tip of a Phillips screwdriver.

These tools were developed in the 19th century as an improvement over flathead screwdrivers because the shape of the screwdriver head enables better traction or grip when driving or removing screws.

Phillips screwdrivers offer superior control and driving strength, but if used too forcefully, the tip can still come out of the screw head.

Go slowly to ensure the screwdriver tip is securely gripping the screw to prevent stripping the screw head. 

3. Pozidriv

Next on our list of different types of screwdrivers is Pozidriv. Pozidriv, commonly known as Pozidrive, was developed by GKN Screws & Fasteners when Phillips’ patent ran out.  

This tool’s function is to stop Phillips screwdrivers from camming out. When the screwdriver’s torque exceeds the drive recess’s maximum, cam-out happens. 

The key features are increased torque without cam-out and improved contact between the drive and fastener head recess, which reduces the likelihood of the drive slipping. They function similarly to Phillips screws but are more readily available. 

The handle is sturdy and effective, and it is also made to rotate swiftly in low-torque applications for greater performance and a more secure grip. The packed shape of the screwdrivers makes it simple to store them. 

4. Torx

Use Torx screwdrivers to tighten or loosen screws on fasteners with a 6-pointed star notch.

Torx screwdrivers are frequently used in the economy’s appliance, electronic, and security sectors because their six-pointed star form prevents repeated use from harming the screws.

Because of its distinctive design, the screwdriver tip can spin Torx fasteners or screws with little radial force, extending the life of both the screw and the screwdriver. 

It is a good idea to carry at least one Torx screwdriver or a pair of magnetic Torx bits to use in a multi-bit screwdriver for the rare occasion when you may need one, even if Torx screwdrivers are not frequently used around the house. 

5. Frearson or Reed and Prince

Frearson is one of the different types of screwdrivers. At first impression, this screwdriver resembles the Phillips; however, there are some significant distinctions.

A Phillips tip has a rounded tip and an angle that is more similar to a 45-degree angle than a Frearson tip, which has a sharp point.

Its main application is in marine equipment requiring less precision and hand tools. It helps prevent typical issues like bit shattering and premature wear. The power tool’s chuck receives the bit right away. 

The ergonomic acetate handle’s resistance to most solvents and chemicals ensures a firm grip while minimizing slippage.

Steel alloy with high strength makes up the blades. This handle’s color coding makes it simple to identify the tip. It adheres to ANSI requirements. 

6. Hex

The purpose of a hex screwdriver is to drive or remove fasteners with a hexagonal notch, such as the screws frequently used in furniture products.

To ensure rapid and efficient installation or removal, it’s crucial to use a tool compatible with the screws because hex screwdrivers exist in various sizes and lengths.

Hex fasteners can be driven at high speeds by electric-powered hex screwdrivers or drills without the screwdriver head tearing the screw notch because the hexagon’s six sides lessen the likelihood of slippage. 

7. Robertson or Square

In honor of a Canadian inventor, the square screwdriver is sometimes called the Robertson screwdriver.

It is one of the different types of screwdrivers we have. Robertson screwdrivers have a square tip and a small taper at the end.

In Canada, where the tool was developed, they are well-liked because the tapered end makes it easier to insert a screw and keep it on the tooltip without holding it. They are frequently employed in furniture and automobile repair. 

Ford Motor Company was the first to adopt them for industrial uses because they increased production, reduced damage, and were very dependable.

They are quite popular in the United States and Canada but less in Europe. The handle’s integrated flange provides a superior twist-resistant blade anchor. 

8. Offset

A Z-shaped instrument called an offset screwdriver has screwdriver heads on both ends and a horizontal metal grip in the middle.

This device is perfect for working in remote locations where a regular screwdriver would be too lengthy to fit, such as behind a heavy appliance, in the ceiling, or behind a wall.

Offset screwdrivers can have different screwdriver heads, such as Phillips or Flathead, and varying diameters and lengths. 

Remember that an offset screwdriver shouldn’t be your go-to for everyday use because it can slip and strip the screws, even if the Z-shape gives excellent leverage for driving or loosening screws and fasteners. 

9. Clutch Head

In recent years, clutch head screws have undergone design changes. The original model had a circular recess in the middle, while the slots now resemble bow ties. Both the automobile sector and leisure vehicles employ them. 

These heads have slotted drives with one-way screwing capabilities and will deliver more torque. You can only take them out slowly. 

They are typically located in locations that receive little care, including bus stops or jails. They have heat-treated steel gears with helical cuts and long service life. 

10. Ratcheting Screwdriver

This is one of the different types of screwdrivers we have. When it would be too challenging to constantly reposition the driver on the fastener, use a ratcheting screwdriver.

When spun oppositely from how it spins freely in one direction, it snags the screw or fastener.

This kind of screwdriver functions similarly to a ratchet. Most devices contain a switch that may be used to reverse the ratcheting mechanism’s direction, allowing you to loosen fasteners and tighten them. 

In most cases, employing this kind of screwdriver is unneeded, but if you’re working in a small area or installing or removing particularly lengthy screws, utilizing a ratcheting screwdriver is advised to increase project productivity. 

11. Hex Socket

Since socket drivers work as socket wrenches instead of having a blade and tip, they are extremely helpful in the mechanical industry. When reaching recessed bolts, a hex socket comes in handy. 

A socket wrench requires more room to turn since the handle is parallel to the surface where the bolt is lodged. It is one of the different types of screwdrivers we have.

Hex sockets can be utilized for low-torque applications since they feature a straight handle and shank, but they can also be used with a standard ratchet plus socket set for bigger applications. 

An Allen, hexagonal, or screwdriver is needed to drive hex sockets. The hexagonal tip of hex screwdrivers is used to turn screws, bolts, and nuts. 

Hex nuts, bolts, and screws are simple to loosen and tighten, thanks to the vast selection of hex screwdrivers available in standard and metric sizes. Aluminum, brass, copper, and steel can all be used to make hex nuts, bolts, and screws. 

12. Precision

Precision screwdrivers are tiny, slender instruments that tighten and loosen teeny screws. When working with computers, displays, and other electronics, precision screwdrivers are another tool you can employ. 

Keeping a set of precision screwdrivers in your workshop or toolbox for DIY repairs is a good idea because appliances frequently feature tiny screws that call for similarly tiny screwdriver heads.

Although Torx precision screwdrivers are sometimes available, Flathead or Phillips’s heads are the most common types of precision screwdriver heads 

13. JIS (Japanese Industrial Standard)

When fastening cross-point screws, a JIS driver is one of the most common types of drivers in your toolbox. Unlike many other sorts, this type of driver doesn’t have any “cam-outs” or broken screws. 

Thanks to its self-centering construction, this screwdriver was superior to Phillips screwdrivers because users could rapidly and efficiently engage its tip into screw heads. 

The Japanese industrial standard allows the operator to regulate torque and overtightening rather than the screw’s head since tool and screw encounters are rapid and self-centering. 

14. Electric Screwdriver

An Electric Screwdriver is one of the different types of screwdrivers we have. An electric screwdriver can greatly increase project efficiency while reducing user fatigue because the screwdriver’s head is driven by an internal motor and powered by electricity, similar to a drill. 

Remember that the slotted or Phillips head screwdriver bit will more likely come out of the screw notch during operation the higher the torque.

Electric screwdrivers are also constrained because they require a direct electrical connection to a power source or a fully charged battery. 

15. Spanner

Other names for spanners, other than the British term wrench, include Snake-Eyes screwdrivers, pig-nose screwdrivers, and drilled head screwdrivers. 

These special screwdrivers remove flathead screws with two tiny depressions around the head.

They differ from regular screwdrivers in that they feature two prongs, similar to those on a barbeque fork. As a result, a spanner is required to remove some types of screws.

Maintenance workers in bus terminals, elevators, stalls, and subways commonly utilize these safe screwdrivers. There are M4 to M12 spanners available. 

16. Multi-bit Screwdriver

Use a multi-bit screwdriver to complete various repairs and chores around the house. This screwdriver features a hollow handle that can hold several screwdriver bits.  

The availability of a wide range of screwdriver bit types is the clear advantage of this kind of screwdriver.

However, because of the poor fit of the bits, which can cause sliding and screw stripping, these tools are better suited for light-duty general use. 

17. Watchmaker

A watchmaker is also one of the different types of screwdrivers we have. Sets of screwdrivers for watchmakers are available. A set includes six screwdrivers with number markings ranging from 0 to 5.

The screwdriver’s bit gets smaller and thinner as the screwdriver’s number decreases. A cap that is attached to the shank takes the handle’s place.

The cap and the shank can be moved independently because of how the cap is fastened to the shank.

A screw can be tightened or loosened by placing the tip at the screw’s head, pressing the cap with one finger, and rotating the shank with the other. Any device, including timepieces, can be fixed using a watchmaker’s screwdriver. 

18. Battery Operated

This tool can be used by professionals, beginners, DIY enthusiasts, computer repair specialists, electricians, and appliance repair workers. 

It can be utilized for tasks that other similar devices can’t because it is a light, strong LED light. For instance, it can fix and remove screws without disassembling the computer. 

This gadget is perfect if you need to lie below an object and there is little room between the floor and the working area. 

It works well for driving light screws but is not the best for drilling or driving heavy ones. Even on the lowest level, the torque is substantial, and the device is functional until the battery runs out. 

19. Tri-Point

There are different types of screwdrivers, but these are widely used in the electrical sector, and tech behemoths like Apple and Nintendo use them in their phones, game consoles, and other products. 

The tri-point driver creates a Y-shaped tip with three blades angled at a 120-degree angle. It, therefore, also goes by the name 3-prong or Y-tip drivers. Only tri-angle drivers compatible with hex drivers have safety difficulties with tri-point drivers. 

20. Magnetic

The screw is held in place by the magnetic tip of magnetic screwdrivers, making it simpler to insert or remove the screw. Manual screwdrivers are increasingly being made with magnetic tips. 

Small electronics manufacturers can use it to install screws in challenging locations. Instead of purchasing additional screwdrivers with magnetic tips, you can magnetize your current set with a rare earth magnet. 

21. Jewelers Screwdriver

Jewelers screwdriver is one of the different types of screwdrivers jewelers use. The small screws on pocket timepieces and eyeglasses are worked with the accuracy of a jeweler’s screwdriver.

The majority of screwdrivers used by jewelers are Phillips screws. However, slotted screwdrivers are also available. 

Pocket watches and spectacles use small screws that are precise tools. It’s also called a watch driver or an eyeglass driver. Typically, flat and Philips head screwdrivers are used. 

22. Tri-wing

The tri-wing screwdriver has a pinwheel-like tip. For screws with triangle sockets and three wings, use a tri-wing screwdriver.

Because of their peculiar slot, these screws are challenging to remove without the screwdriver. 

The primary benefit of these screwdrivers is their ability to tighten to exceptionally high torque values while being more expensive and less widely available than other varieties. 

23. Tri-angle

Last on our list of different types of screwdrivers is the Tri-angle screwdriver. These screwdrivers, often referred to as TAs, have a triangle-shaped tip designed to fit into triangular depressions on screw heads.

Many businesses, including those that deal with toys, electronics, and appliances, use it to increase security.

Tri-angle screwdrivers are uncommon in DIY or home tool kits because hex screwdrivers can also drive TA screws.

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