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Pocket Hole Screws vs Regular Screw | The Definitive Guide.

Are you confused about how to use pocket hole screws? Or if you’ve never heard of them before? If you’re a DIY enthusiast, then you might be wondering if pocket holes are worth the hassle.

They are used to attach wood parts together using screws. The process involves drilling holes into the wood first and then screwing the two pieces together.

It’s a lot easier and faster than regular wood screws because there is less mess involved.

But do you know the difference between pocket holes and regular screws? In this article, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of both types of screws and help you choose which one is better for you.

What is the main difference of a pocket hole screw and a regular screw head?

A pocket hole screw has a specially designed screw head that allows for a pilot hole in the wood before driving the screw into place.

This creates a small space between the wood and the screw head, which reduces the chance of splitting the wood.

The other advantage of pocket screws is that they can hold more weight compared to normal screws. They have larger threads on their heads so they can handle heavier loads without breaking or bending.

On the downside, it takes longer to drill the pilot hole since you need to make sure your drill bit goes through all three layers of wood.

On the other side regular screw are usually made from steel with sharp edges. These screws don’t require any special treatment like pre-drilling.

You just drive them straight into the wood. However, they tend to split easily when under heavy load.

The advantage of using regular screws are that they’re cheaper and easy to find at hardware stores.

You also won’t have to worry about damaging the surface finish of your furniture by sanding off the excess paint after installing the screws.

So what’s my recommendation? Pocket holes are great for attaching smaller items such as picture frames and drawer fronts.

But I would not recommend using them for large projects where you want to add strength to the joint.

Regular screws work well for most applications but if you plan to install something really heavy, consider getting some extra long ones instead.

If you’d like to learn more about pocket holes, check out our video tutorial below:

How to use pocket holes screw?

To install a pocket hole screw, start by marking out where you want the screw to go. Then mark off an area around 1/4 inch away from each corner.

Next, measure down 2 inches from the top edge of the board and draw lines across the width of the board. You should now see four marks along the length of the board.

Use a pencil to trace over those lines onto the backside of the board.

Now cut out the areas marked with a jigsaw or circular saw. Make sure not to remove too much material as you will lose some strength once the screw gets inserted.

Once you’ve finished cutting, sand the surface smooth.

How to use regular screw?

Regular screws work best when attaching thin materials such as plywood or particleboard. To avoid damaging the wood, always keep the thickness of the wood at least 3/8th of an inch thick.

Start by measuring the distance between the boards you wish to connect. Mark the center point of the boards and then add another line perpendicular to the first line.

Now divide the total number of feet by 4 to get the amount of spaces needed per foot.

What are the other types of screw?

If you’re thinking about buying a wood floor, chances are you’ve seen at least one or two different kinds of screws before. Each type has its own benefits and drawbacks.

So, what are the other types of screws?

There are basically three main types of screws: lag screws, setscrews, and machine screws. Let’s take a closer look at each type.

A lag screw is used to secure material such as plywood or particle board into place.

It’s usually driven into the surface of the material using a hammer. A lag screw is also commonly called a lag bolt.

A setscrew is designed to hold materials together while allowing for easy separation. Setscrews are often used to hold parts together temporarily until they are permanently attached.

A machine screw is similar to a lag screw in that it is designed to secure materials together.

However, unlike a lag screw, a machine screw is usually threaded onto a shaft rather than being hammered into place.

The following are other types of a common wood screws and screw head types:

  • Machine screws

This type of screws are typically found on power tools.

They have threads which allow them to be screwed into wood without stripping the thread. The most popular sizes include 5/16″ and 9/64″.

  • Flathead screw

Flathead screw are sometimes referred to as Phillips Head screws. These screws come in many shapes and sizes but all share the same basic design.

Flathead screws can be either self-tapping or non-self tapping.

Self-drilling flathead screws require no piloting and simply drill their way through the wood. Non-self-tapping screws need a bit to guide them into position.

  • Pocket screws

Pocket screws are very useful because they provide extra support where there isn’t enough room for a standard screw. This makes pocket screws perfect for securing cabinets and furniture legs.

Pocket screws are available in several lengths ranging from 1/2″-1″, 2″, 3″, 4″, 6″, 8″, 10″, 12″, 16″, 20″, 24″, 30″, 40″, 50″, 60″, 80″, 100″, 120″, 160″, 200″, 240″, 300″, 400″, 500″, 600″, 700″, 800″, 900″, 1000

  • Deck screws

Deck screws are screw materials that is used for attaching deck boards. Deck screws are made up of four components: the shank, the tip, the washer, and the nut.

Shanks vary depending upon the size of the screw. Shanks range from 7/32″ – 11/4″.

Tips are the part of the screw that actually goes into the wood. Tips may be straight or slightly curved.

Straight tips are generally preferred over curved ones since they tend to penetrate more easily.

  • Regular wood screws

A regular wood screws are common screws used for general construction purposes.

Commonly known as “flat head,” these screws feature an oval shaped head with parallel sides.

  • Slotted screws

Slotted screws are another kind of wood screws.

Slotted screws are designed to work well when you don’t want your screw heads showing. For example, slotted screws would be ideal if you were installing crown moldings.

  • Metal screws

This type of a threaded screw used for fastening metal objects such as pipes, beams, etc.

Metal screws are not recommended for use in softwood due to the risk of splitting the wood.

  • Cabinet screws

This type of screws are commonly used for making cabinet doors and drawers.

Cabinet screws are also called face plate screws. Faceplate screws are often used by carpenters who make custom cabinetry.

  • Hole sawed screws

These screws are specially designed so that they will fit perfectly into holes cut using a hole saw. Holesawed screws are primarily used for framing lumber.

  • Drywall screws

This type of screws are used for dry wall applications. Drywall screws are usually longer than other types of screws.

  • Kreg Screws

Kreg Screws are special purpose screws which have been developed specifically for working on wooden surfaces like plywood and particle board.

Kreg screws are manufactured by the company Kreg Industries Inc., located in Grand Rapids Michigan.

They are widely used in home improvement projects including kitchen remodeling, bathroom renovation, and interior decorating.

  • Phillips head screws

A Phillips head screws are screw materials that is used for connecting two pieces of material together. They can be found at hardware stores.

  • Stainless steel screws

This type of screws are used for joining metals together. Stainless steel screws are very strong but their high cost limits its usage.

  • Star drive screw

Star drive screws are one of the most popular kinds of screws available today. Star drive screws are typically used for light duty jobs where strength isn’t required.

  • Threaded screw

This type of screw are used for securing items together. Threaded screws come in different sizes and shapes.

The thread pitch determines how many threads per inch there are. A higher TPI means stronger connection between the parts being connected.

  • #8 1-¼” screws

#8 1-¼” screws are among the strongest screws available. These screws are made from stainless steel and are suitable for heavy duty tasks.

  • Rockler Hi-lo screws

This type of screws are used for general-purpose construction. Rockler Hi-Lo screws are made out of chrome vanadium alloy and are corrosion resistant.

  • Already-plated screws

This plated screws are construction screws suitable for indoor or outdoor environments. The coating protects them against rusting.

  • Blue screws

Blue screws are coated with zinc chromate paint. This makes it easier to identify when these screws need replacing.

Blue screws are generally more expensive than regular screws.

  • Brass-plated screws

Brass-plated screws are coated with brass powder. Brass-plated screws are ideal for exterior uses because they resist weather damage better than ordinary screws.

  • Bugle head screws

This type of screws are used for fastening wood products such as cabinets and furniture. Buglehead screws are commonly known as cabinet screws.

  • Cheap drywall screws

Cheap drywall screws are not recommended for use in any kind of project involving structural integrity. Cheap drywall screws may break easily if you try to remove them after installation.

  • Countersunk screws

Countersunk screws are screwed into countersunk holes. Countersunk screws are often used for attaching decorative elements to walls.

  • Coated deck screws

Coated screws are designed to prevent moisture penetration. Coated screws are also easy to install and require less time compared to other types of screws.

  • Corner pocket screws

These screws have a special design which allows them to fit tightly within corners. Corner pocket screws are usually used for small assembly work.

  • Diameter screws

Diameter screws are used for assembling wooden components. Diameter screws are available in various lengths, diameters, pitches, and finishes.

  • Double headed screws

Double headed screws are used for holding multiple objects together. Double headed screws are sometimes referred to as double ended screws.

  • Dualthread screw

Dualthread screw are two sided screws that can be installed on both sides of an object without having to turn the screw twice. Dualthread screws are useful for installing things like picture frames.

  • Flat head production screws

This type of production screws are manufactured using high quality materials.

Flat head production screws are strong enough to hold large loads. They are also very durable.

  • Galvanized screws

Galvanized screws are coated with zinc so they will last longer than uncoated screws. Galvanized screws are good for outdoor projects where exposure to rain is common.

  • Flathead wood screw

Flathead screw or flathead wood screw are one side heads of wood screws. These screws are typically used for interior applications.

  • Hexagon head screws

Hexagonal head screws are popular among DIY enthusiasts due to their unique shape. Hexagonal head screws come in different sizes and shapes.

  • Leverage screws

Leverage screws are used for securing heavy items. Leverage screws are stronger than standard screws.

  • Masonry screws

Masonary screws are specially designed to withstand extreme temperatures.

  • Grain screws

Grain screws are made from steel and copper alloys. Grain screws are generally used for indoor purposes only.

  • Hardened-steel screws

Hardened-steel screws are more resistant to corrosion and rusting. Hardened-steel screws are ideal for exterior uses.

  • Hi-lo pocket-hole screws

Hi-lo pocket-hole screws are similar to regular pocket hole screws except they feature a larger diameter at the top end. Hi-lo pocket-hole screw has a smaller diameter at its bottom end.

This makes it easier to drill through hard surfaces such as concrete.

  • Highpoint screws

Highpoint screws are used for fastening metal parts. Highpoint screws are commonly found in construction sites.

  • Inexpensive drywall screws

This inexpensive drywall screws are great for home improvement projects. Drywall screws are often sold by volume rather than weight.

This means you get what you pay for when buying these screws.

  • Kreg pocket-hole screws

Kreg pocket-hole screws are specifically engineered for use in Kreg jig machines. The design of this screw ensures that the threads remain tight even after repeated tightening.

This helps prevent loosening during installation.

 Tips for using screws

Always use the correct screw thread type. This important for ensuring proper functioning of your device.

For example, using an incorrect size bolt will result in improper tightening of nuts on bolts. Using the wrong nut could cause loosening of the bolt over time.

Scott Buckley

Scott Buckley

I'm Scott, a Woodworker by day and book geek by night. I love making things out of wood. While I have and still, on occassion do, work with metal and plastics, I find them to be cold and somewhat boring. Wood is warm and I feel close to nature with it. I started as a means to help like minded creative folk to answer burning questions. I hope you enjoy reading and learning, and always feel free to reach out to me should you have any questions!

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